Reexamination is a post-grant proceeding that allows highly skilled examiners at the United States Patent & Trademark Office to consider information that is material the patentability of an issued patent. To initiate reexamination of the patent, an interested party must submit prior art that raises a substantial new question of patentability. The interested party is often a third party involved in an infringement lawsuit filed by the patent holder. In such a case, the trial proceeding may be put on hold pending the outcome of the reexamination proceeding. Sometimes, a reexamination proceeding is initiated by the patent holder. The rationale for such a reexamination proceeding is to ascertain the validity of the patent in view of any patents and printed publications that have been uncovered since the grant of the patent. During the reexamination proceeding, the patent owner can narrow, cancel or submit new claims. A reexamined patent expires on the same day the originally granted patent would expire.
It should be noted that, aside from the initial filing of the Reexamination Request, the requestor has no further involvement with the reexamination proceeding.
If you have a question about Ex Parte Reexamination Proceedings, please feel free to reach out to us via telephone or email. You may also fill out our online inquiry form and we will strive to get back to you within 24 hours.