08Aug 2016

USPTO Unveils New Pilot Program By Silvia Salvadori, PhD{1:35 minutes to read} On July 11, 2016, the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) initiated a pilot program called The Post-Prosecution Pilot Program (P3). Under this program, once an applicant files an after final response, a panel of examiners, including the examiner of record, will conduct a conference with the applicant to review the applicant’s response to the final office action of record.

This P3 program is a combination of two existing pilot programs: The Pre-Appeal Brief Conference Pilot Program and The After Final Consideration Pilot Program 2.0.

In order to participate in the P3, the applicant is required to file a request for consideration within two months from the mailing date of a final rejection and prior to filing a notice of appeal, together with a response to the final rejection and a statement that the applicant is willing and available to participate in the conference, either in person or by phone.

It should be kept in mind that participation in the P3 is possible only after the receipt of a final office action and cannot include more than five pages of arguments (exclusive of any proposed “after final” claim amendments which, unlike in the pre-appeal brief conference, are allowed in the P3).

There are many advantages for participating in the program. For example, under this program, the applicant will have the possibility to participate and to understand if and why the prosecution cannot go forward, since the office (USPTO) will arrange a conference with the applicant in-person, by telephone or by video conferencing tool.

The P3 program is free, however there is a limit as to how many applications the USPTO can accept for now. The USPTO is accepting 200 compliant requests for each technology center and will run this program until January 12, 2017. Moreover, the USPTO is taking comments from the public to see whether or not this pilot program is effective to improve after final practice.

Contact me with questions or comments at silvia@salvadorilaw.com.
Silvia Salvadori, PhD

Silvia Salvadori, PhD

(212) 897-1938