New Director Turns Attention to Rule Making

This past Friday, Director Vidal announced that the agency will be keeping the current interim Director review process that was put in place post-Arthrex.  The Director added that the process (or some variant thereof) will be formalized via Notice-and-Comment Rulemaking after collecting stakeholder input.  In the coming weeks, the agency intends to issue a Request for Comment (RFC) on the Director review process. In addition to providing more details on the Director review process (here), Director Vidal “strongly encourage[d] parties to provide a priority-ranked list of issues being raised.”

Issues that may warrant review by the Director include:

    • Issues that involve an intervening change in the law or USPTO procedures or guidance
    • Material errors of fact or law in the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) decision
    • Matters that the PTAB misapprehended or overlooked
    • Novel issues of law or policy
    • Issues on which PTAB panel decisions are split
    • Issues of particular importance to the Office or patent community
    • Inconsistencies with Office procedures, guidance, or decisions

The agency is still not accepting Director Review filings for denied institutions, but a recently filed mandamus petition to the CAFC could change that practice 😉

To provide feedback prior to issuance of the RFC, email