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Sunday, May 9, 2010


Under the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP) 201.08; A continuation-in-part is an application filed during the lifetime of an earlier nonprovisional application, repeating some substantial portion or all of the earlier nonprovisional application and adding matter not disclosed in the said earlier nonprovisional application. (In re Klein, 1930 C.D. 2, 393 O.G. 519 (Comm'r Pat. 1930)). The continuation-in-part application may only be filed under 37 CFR 1.53(b). The continuation-in-part application must claim the benefit of the prior nonprovisional application under 35 U.S.C. 120 or 365(c). For more information on claiming the benefit of a prior nonprovisional application, see MPEP § 201.11.
A continuation-in-part application CANNOT be filed as a continued prosecution application (CPA) under 37 CFR 1.53(d).

An application claiming the benefit of a provisional application under 35 U.S.C. 119(e) should not be called a "continuation-in-part" of the provisional application since an application that claims benefit of a provisional application is a nonprovisional application of a provisional application, not a continuation, division, or continuation-in-part of the provisional application.

The mere filing of a continuation-in-part does not itself create a presumption that the applicant acquiesces in any rejections which may be outstanding in the copending national nonprovisional application or applications upon which the continuation-in-part application relies for benefit.

A continuation-in-part filed by a sole applicant may also derive from an earlier joint application showing a portion only of the subject matter of the later application, subject to the conditions set forth in 35 U.S.C. 120 and 37 CFR 1.78. Subject to the same conditions, a joint continuation-in-part application may derive from an earlier sole application.

Unless the filing date of the earlier nonprovisional application is actually needed, for example, in the case of an interference or to overcome a reference, there is no need for the Office to make a determination as to whether the requirement of 35 U.S.C. 120, that the earlier nonprovisional application discloses the invention of the second application in the manner provided by the first paragraph of 35 U.S.C. 112, is met and whether a substantial portion of all of the earlier nonprovisional application is repeated in the second application in a continuation-in-part situation. Accordingly, an alleged continuation-in-part application should be permitted to claim the benefit of the filing date of an earlier nonprovisional application if the alleged continuation-in-part application complies with the **>other< requirements of 35 U.S.C. 120 >and 37 CFR 1.78, such as:

     (A) The first application and the alleged continuation-in-part application were filed with at least one common inventor;
     (B) The alleged continuation-in-part application was "filed before the patenting or abandonment of or termination of proceedings on the first application or an application similarly entitled to the benefit of the filing date of the first application"; and
     (C) The alleged continuation-in-part application "contains or is amended to contain a specific reference to the earlier filed application." (The specific reference **>must be submitted either in the first sentence(s) of the specification or in an application data sheet (see 37 CFR 1.76(b)(5)).) See MPEP § 201.11 for more information on claiming the benefit of a prior nonprovisional application.< For notation to be put in the file history by the examiner in the case of a continuation-in-part application see MPEP § 202.02. See MPEP § 708 for order of examination. Use form paragraph 2.06 to remind applicant of possible continuation-in-part status.

¶ 2.06 Possible Status as Continuation-in-Part

This application repeats a substantial portion of prior Application No. [1], filed [2], and adds and claims additional disclosure not presented in the prior application. Since this application names an inventor or inventors named in the prior application, it may constitute a continuation-in-part of the prior application. Should applicant desire to obtain the benefit of the filing date of the prior application, attention is directed to 35 U.S.C. 120 and 37 CFR 1.78.

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