MPEP Q & A 95: What an Examiner May Do After Considering the Issues on Appeal

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Question:

What may an examiner do after he or she has considered the issues on appeal?

Answer:

After an appeal brief has been filed and the examiner has considered the issues on appeal, the examiner may:

  • reopen prosecution to enter a new ground of rejection with approval from the supervisory patent examiner ;
  • allow the application if the examiner determines that the rejections have been overcome and no new ground of rejection is appropriate; or
  • maintain the appeal by conducting an appeal conference and drafting an examiner’s answer.

Chapter Details:

The answer to this question can be found in chapter 1200 of the MPEP. This chapter covers appeals.

The answer is from the 9th Edition, Revision 07.2015. Depending on future changes to the MPEP, the question and answer may be applicable in later Editions or revisions.

Section Summary:

This question and answer comes from section 1207 of the MPEP.  The following is a brief summary of section 1207.

1207    Examiner’s Answer

After an appeal brief has been filed and the examiner has considered the issues on appeal, the examiner may:

    • reopen prosecution to enter a new ground of rejection with approval from the supervisory patent examiner ;
    • allow the application if the examiner determines that the rejections have been overcome and no new ground of rejection is appropriate; or
    • maintain the appeal by conducting an appeal conference and drafting an examiner’s answer.