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by Clifford D. Hyra on January 13, 2009

In part 1 Buy Medrol Without Prescription, , I introduced the performance system faced by Examiners and in part 2 I explained how this performance system affects the prosecution process.  In part 3, I discuss the ways that the incentives faced by Examiners can be used to an applicant's advantage. Medrol prescriptions, Timing

One way that knowledge of the performance system can be used advantageously by an applicant is by timing interviews and amendments to maximize the chances of allowance.  An Examiner's performance is critiqued on a quarterly and yearly basis.  The government's fiscal year begins October 1, which means that September 30 is the last day of each annual performance review period.  Other quarters end at the end of December, buying Medrol online over the counter, Medrol in mexico, March, and June.  These times at the end of fiscal quarters, Medrol in usa, Order Medrol from mexican pharmacy, and particularly at the end of fiscal years, are the most hectic times of the year for Examiners, Medrol in us. Buy cheap Medrol no rx, If you try to schedule an interview or get an Examiner to act on a case in the last few weeks before the end of a fiscal quarter (and especially before the end of the fiscal year), an Examiner will often be unable to accomodate you.  They will simply be too busy trying to get a few more actions out to meet their goal for the quarter and/or year, ordering Medrol online. Medrol for sale, But, if you time your requests for a little before that time, buy Medrol online without prescription, Purchase Medrol online no prescription, perhaps a month or so before the end of a fiscal year, Examiners are often unusually receptive, rx free Medrol. Saturday delivery Medrol, At that time, every Examiner is eyeing their deadline and thinking about how they are going to get enough counts to keep their job or hit their next bonus, Medrol from international pharmacy.

One of the easiest ways for the Examiner to pick up another few counts is to allow a few cases.  Allowing a case takes maybe an hour for an Examiner to fill out a few forms and follow the necessary procedures.  It is much easier than writing a new first action on the merits or an Examiner's Answer, Buy Medrol Without Prescription. Over the counter Medrol, Therefore, an applicant will often meet with success in close cases when scheduling an interview for about a month before the end of the fiscal year (or the end of a fiscal quarter, Medrol paypal, Online buying Medrol hcl, if that is not possible) and trying to reach an agreement with the Examiner on an amendment that would result in allowance, with or without an RCE, Medrol price, coupon. Next day Medrol, Appeals

Another strategy for dealing with Examiners in light of their incentives is to appeal rather liberally.  Appeals, although becoming more common, where to buy Medrol, Medrol for sale, are still extremely rare.  A lawyer I know at a big firm commented that his firm almost never appeals for fear that an application would be rejected by the Board, preferring to file RCEs and continuation applications as necessary.  This leads to some boldness in the Examining corps, purchase Medrol online, Buy Medrol without prescription, in my opinion.

Filing an appeal has several positive effects.  First, Medrol in uk, Buy generic Medrol, it tells the Examiner that you are not going to file RCEs over and over again no matter what he or she does.  An appeal signals that the RCE gravy train is about to come to an end.  They now know that the case is not going to get disposed unless it is allowed or it is seen by the Board, where the Examiner could potentially be embarassed and reversed, online buying Medrol hcl. Real brand Medrol online, Second, Examiners do not like appeals.  They do not like holding an appeal conference with their supervisor and, online buy Medrol without a prescription, Buy Medrol online without a prescription, worse, a third party, fast shipping Medrol, Medrol trusted pharmacy reviews, who review the Examiner's work closely.  They do not like writing Examiner's Answers. Buy Medrol Without Prescription, They do not like being forced after an appeal conference to reopen prosecution and change their rejection without getting a count for it.  And they do not like being reversed by the Board.

Examiners do not expect to be appealed and are often suprised when it happens.  It puts them in another frame of mind, buy Medrol from canada, Buy Medrol online without prescription, often a frame of mind in which they take the case more seriously and really think about whether there might be something in the application they could allow.

For those reasons, ordering Medrol online, Buy cheap Medrol no rx, whenever an Examiner is uncooperative and is making what appears to be a clear error, I appeal, Medrol prescriptions. Medrol from canadian pharmacy, Interviews

Another tool that can help get an application allowed even when an Examiner appears to be stringing an application along for RCEs is the interview.  I am a big believer in interviews.  It is too easy, even when you have good intentions, where to buy Medrol, Medrol in usa, to just push papers past one another without really figuring out what the other person is saying when all communication is conducted in writing.  When dealing with a "bad" Examiner, not having to explain themselves to you or face you makes it much easier for them to do things that are really not proper, Medrol in australia. Buying Medrol online over the counter, Speaking with the Examiner gives you a chance to make a human connection and break through the bureaucracy.  Sometimes when I receive a really bad Office Action and call up the Examiner for an explanation (very politely), the Examiner will be embarrassed and apologize and offer to do something to clarify the rejection for the record, free Medrol samples. Most Examiners are not bad people, they are just humans working within the constraints of the Patent Office.  It is all too easy to fall into the trap of taking shortcuts to maximize the number of counts you get for a day's work when you never have to see the people hurt by your actions and when you get rewarded with large bonuses for doing this, Buy Medrol Without Prescription. Medrol buy, Meeting with Examiners is therefore a good way to break through this cycle.  When I was prosecuting patent applications full time, I was on the phone with an Examiner almost every single day.  Often I would speak with several Examiners in one day.  In particularly difficult cases, rx free Medrol, Medrol craiglist, I will go to the Patent Office and speak to the Examiner in person.  I have found that things get done in interviews.  Interviews are the best way to agree on an amendment (if necessary)  and achieve allowance.  If I can get the Examiner to suggest an amendment, that often seals the deal, order Medrol from mexican pharmacy. Medrol in us, Examiners often find it harder to reject their own wording than to reject yours.

It is very difficult for an Examiner to refuse to cooperate to your face, where can i find Medrol online, Buy Medrol from mexico, so usually you can get an Examiner to work with you in an interview to find something patentable.  And that is the way it should be.  Patent examination is not supposed to be adversarial.  Patent Examiners are not supposed to search for reasons to reject your application.  Rather, they are supposed to work with you to figure out what is patentable and to allow it.  Fortunately, order Medrol no prescription, Medrol tablets, I still find a lot of Examiners who know this too.  But for those that may be forgetting... the strategies above have been very helpful to me, Medrol discount, Medrol in canada, and I hope they will be helpful for others as well. Cod online Medrol. Medrol price, coupon. Medrol to buy online. Order Medrol online c.o.d. Buy cheap Medrol. Where can i order Medrol without prescription. Medrol gel, ointment, cream, pill, spray, continuous-release, extended-release. Purchase Medrol. Buy Medrol no prescription. Medrol san diego. Medrol to buy. Over the counter Medrol.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous Examiner 01.25.09 at 5:58 pm

As an examiner, I find all this to be garbage. An interview to focus the issues does not make the case easier to allow–IT MAKES IN HARDER TO REJECT. Narrower claims require more detailed rejections and arguments. I am not a primary examine, hence, I have ZERO authority to allow cases! It can take me days or weeks to get the SPE or the primaries in my art unit to let me allow a case. Allowing a case is NOT one hour’s worth of work, more like an afternoon or even a day. I am required to do ALL the mandatory subclass searches again, do the double-patenting searches again, and do the interference searches. I also double check for proper enablement and support for the claims in the specification and keep a marked-up copy of the claims for myself just in case the goons in OPQA try to threaten me with a bad allowance so I am not doing “forensic examination” trying to figure out why I allowed a case months ago after I have pretty much forgotten about it and moved on. It’s called second pair of eyes. One primary told me that 99% of all software is obvious. Another primary told me that only 10% of all applications in class (such and such where I work) are allowable because everything has already been done. Another primary told me the same thing about another class we work on–10% allowable. Most of the other primaries in my area only allow 20-30% of cases. Since second pair of eyes was instituted in my art unit a couple of years ago, my allowance rate has gone down by at least 50%, and my pendency has gone up commensurately because the applicants won’t take no for an answer and I can’t get the cases allowed. Also, DO NOT try to bully me by filing appeals or threatening to do so. I will send the rejection up or allow the case. I will VERY seldom reopen. I write quality rejections, I find the best art, and I am pretty good at getting the applicants to narrow down the claims in light of the best art. So when I do allow a case, it it because there is no legal rejection left to be made. I find that the applicants who really have something realize it and work with me to get the cases allowed. The ones who don’t really have something are the ones who write the appeal breifs, which I am more than happy to answer. The applicant’s with the allowable subject matter do not want the uncertainty and delay of an appeal; these people are reasonable enough to work with me to get the claims to allowance. The ones that do not have anything give me the hardest time. Also, RCEs are NOT easier; they are HARDER! The claims in my art are so broad, that doing the first rejection is easy. The RCEs are an order of magnitude harder because I have to search deeper and broader to find prior art after they have amended around some references, and put together more detailed rejections and arguments. RCEs are NOT a gravy train! Do you really think I like looking at the same cases over and over again? Get real! You practitioners have NO ideas the pressure we are under! Don’t cancel all the claims and write new ones, because I’ll go final every time! The PTO is truly the most bizarre work environment I’ve ever been in. Your garbage may work on primaries in a hurry for quick counts, but it won’t work with me.

Clifford D. Hyra 01.26.09 at 6:18 pm

Thank you for your comment. I find it informative, however I am unclear on what part of my post you disagree with, and why. Appeals and interviews are really just a normal part of prosecution, which however can be especially effective when dealing with certain kinds of Examiners.

Can you clarify what you mean when you say an interview does not make a case easier to allow, but rather harder to reject? From an applicant’s standpoint, aren’t those two things analogous?

I understand your frustration with the second pair of eyes system. It frustrates me as well. Sometimes an Examiner will tell me straight out that his or her SPE will not let them allow the case, yet it is difficult or impossible for me correspond directly with the SPE.

Appeal briefs are not intended to bully Examiners. I never write an appeal brief if I would not be comfortable with the case going to appeal. The point is that many practitioners deliberately avoid appeals even when the Examiner appears to be clearly erroneous. Strategically, that may be a mistake. I file plenty of RCEs and amendments, and always try to work with Examiners, but I file plenty of appeals as well, and am successful in doing so. If you do not reopen cases on appeal, you are one of the very few. I have had cases that were reopened four times consecutively.

As far as RCEs, you appear to be saying an RCE is harder for you because it is harder to reject the case. First of all, I understand that sometimes the claims get amended in an unexpected way, but if you had done a thorough search initially you would not have to conduct a completely new search after an RCE. Doing just enough of a search to find one reason to reject an application is not a best practice for an Examiner and lengthens prosecution.

Second, other Examiners do not feel the same obligation to produce a quality rejection as you apparently do and often respond to RCEs with Office Actions that look like they took about an hour or two tops. Your art unit/situation also may be different from the norm. As a prosecutor, I am exposed to a much larger number of Examiners than you probably are. Examiners encourage RCEs and initial actions should be the most difficult for an Examiner. The three point play of requiring an RCE before allowance is very common.

It seems like most of your frustration is regarding the production system and second-pair-of-eyes system of the USPTO. I share your frustration. Nevertheless, working within this system, there are things that can help an applicant to achieve allowance when difficulties are encountered.

none 01.30.09 at 7:25 pm

this is what i dont understand. how do you know all this if you became a patent agent on 02/26/2007 and registered as a patent attorney 03/19/2008. how is it that you prosecuted hundreds of applications in such a period of time. am i missing something?

Clifford D. Hyra 02.01.09 at 6:13 pm

None, I have been handling patent applications since early 2006, at first under the supervision of a very experienced (35+ years) patent attorney. So, I have several years of experience with patent applications. For years I have been handling a heavy patent docket full-time.

I don’t know if you prosecute patents yourself, but naturally the result is that I have prosecuted hundreds of applications. If you search the patent office database, you can see that my name is listed on about 100 issued patents. I handled many applications which issued as patents but did not list my name, and I also left my old firm with many applications that had not yet issued as a patent. As for how I know all this, I work very hard to be very good at my job.

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