National Medal of Technology and Innovation Nomination Evaluation Committee Meeting
The National Medal of Technology and Innovation (NMTI) Nomination Evaluation Committee will meet in closed session on November 9, 2018. The primary purpose of the meeting is to discuss the relative merits of persons, teams, and companies nominated for the NMTI.
Request for Comments on Motion To Amend Practice and Procedures in Trial Proceedings Under the America Invents Act Before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board
This Request for Comments seeks public input on certain practices and procedures that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (``PTAB'' or ``Board'') of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (``Office'' or ``USPTO'') proposes regarding motions to amend filed in inter partes reviews (``IPR''), post-grant reviews (``PGR''), and covered business method patent reviews (``CBM'') pursuant to the provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (``AIA'') providing for trial proceedings before the Office. Specifically, the Office seeks input on a proposed amendment process that would involve a preliminary non-binding decision by the Board that provides information to the parties regarding the merits of a motion to amend, and an opportunity for a patent owner to revise its motion to amend thereafter. In addition, the Office seeks input on a proposed pilot program implementing the new amendment process. The Office also seeks input regarding whether the Office should continue to allocate the burden of persuasion regarding patentability of substitute claims as set forth in a recent informative Board decision, as well as any suggestions the public may have as to motion to amend practice before the Board generally.
Access to Relevant Prior Art Initiative
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is implementing the first phase of the Access to Relevant Prior Art Initiative (``RPA Initiative'') to import citations (e.g., bibliographic data on forms PTO/SB/08 and PTO-892) from the immediate parent application into the continuing application. The citations corresponding to the documents considered by the examiner in the continuing application will be printed on the face of the patent issuing from the continuing application without the applicant having to resubmit the information on an Information Disclosure Statement. Additionally, an applicant's duty to disclose information in the continuing application will continue to be satisfied for information considered in the parent application and will be satisfied for any additional information made of record by the Office in the continuing application. The RPA Initiative is being developed in response to public input following an August 29, 2016, notice and September 28, 2016, roundtable event on leveraging electronic resources to retrieve information from applicant's other applications. The USPTO plans to implement the RPA Initiative in phases to consider and address public and examiner feedback at each phase and determine how to effectively expand the RPA Initiative in future phases.
Changes to the Claim Construction Standard for Interpreting Claims in Trial Proceedings Before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (``USPTO'' or ``Office'') revises the claim construction standard for interpreting claims in inter partes review (``IPR''), post-grant review (``PGR''), and the transitional program for covered business method patents (``CBM'') proceedings before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (``PTAB'' or ``Board''). In particular, the Office is replacing the broadest reasonable interpretation (``BRI'') standard such that claims shall now be construed using the same claim construction standard that is used to construe the claim in a civil action in federal district court. This rule reflects that the PTAB in an AIA proceeding will apply the same standard applied in federal courts to construe patent claims. The Office also amends the rules to add that any prior claim construction determination concerning a term of the claim in a civil action, or a proceeding before the International Trade Commission (``ITC''), that is timely made of record in an IPR, PGR, or CBM proceeding will be considered.