Since CPA applications were eliminated for utility and plant applications, what should applicants who wish to continue examination of the same claimed invention after the prosecution of a utility or plant application is closed consider filing?
Effective July 14, 2003, continued prosecution application (CPA) practice was eliminated as to utility and plant applications. Henceforth, applicants who wish to continue examination of the same claimed invention after the prosecution of a utility or plant application is closed should consider filing a request for continued examination (RCE).
The answer to this question can be found in chapter 200 of the MPEP. This chapter covers Types, Cross-Noting, and Status of Application.
The answer is from the 9th Edition, Revision 10.2019. Depending on future changes to the MPEP, the question and answer may or may not be applicable in later Editions or revisions.
This question and answer comes from section 201.06(d) of the MPEP. The following is a brief summary of section 201.06(d).
201.06(d) 37 CFR 1.53(d) Continued Prosecution Application (CPA) Practice
This section discusses 37 C.F.R. 1.53(d), CPA practice in detail. CPA practice is not allowed for utility and plant applications, only design applications. CPA’s are treated as amended applications as of the filing date of the CPA.
This section covers conditions for filing CPA’s, signature requirements, filing date details, small entity/microentity status, extensions of time, inventorship, and examination of CPA’s including the benefit of earlier filing date, terminal disclaimers, prior election, information disclosure statements and preliminary amendments, copies of affidavits, and public access to CPA’s.