USPTO Pilot Program May Bring Welcome If Limited Efficiency

By Kelvin Varghese (January 18, 2022, 4:51 PM EST) -- The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has announced a new pilot program that allows an applicant to defer responding to a subject matter eligibility, or SME, rejection under Title 35 of the U.S. Code, Section 101, during prosecution of a patent application.[1]

As part of the Deferred Subject Matter Eligibility Response, or DSMER, Pilot Program, the applicant can respond to a nonfinal office action with both SME and non-SME rejections by directly addressing only the non-SME rejection.

Based on the applicant's response, the examiner will reconsider the SME rejection. In some situations, the applicant's response to the non-SME rejection will overcome...

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