United States Patent and Trademark Office March 30, 2010 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Streamlined Procedure for Appeal Brief Review
Document Number: 2010-7034
Type: Notice
Date: 2010-03-30
Agency: Department of Commerce, United States Patent and Trademark Office
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is streamlining the procedure for the review of appeal briefs to increase the efficiency of the appeal process and reduce pendency of appeals. The Chief Judge of the Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (BPAI) or his designee (collectively, ``Chief Judge''), will have the sole responsibility for determining whether appeal briefs filed in patent applications comply with the applicable regulations, and will complete the determination before the appeal brief is forwarded to the examiner for consideration. The Patent Appeal Center and the examiner will no longer review appeal briefs for compliance with the applicable regulations. The USPTO expects to achieve a reduction in appeal pendency as measured from the filing of a notice of appeal to docketing of the appeal by eliminating duplicate reviews by the examiner, Patent Appeal Center, and the BPAI. We are expecting further reduction in pendency because the streamlined procedure will increase consistency in the determination, and thereby reduce the number of notices of noncompliant appeal brief and non-substantive returns from the BPAI that require appellants to file corrected appeal briefs.
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