Evidentiary Hearing Held in Engineer’s Suit Against U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Alleging Bad-Faith Patent Examinations

“Hyatt’s counsel argued that [the] examples [provided in the suit] show that the conduct of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office indicated that there was some unofficial policy or order not to issue patents to Hyatt.”

Gilbert Hyatt

The extent to which the existence of a patent system will promote “the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to … inventors the exclusive rights to their … discoveries” depends on whether patent applications are examined in an unbiased manner and without undue delay. Some patent applicants and some patent practitioners have been fortunate and have generally observed reasonable timeliness and action by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Others have had a very different experience with the agency. Documents from a pending case at the Federal Court in the Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA) illustrate one of those circumstances. The story outlined in this case may help shape patent practitioners’ and applicants’ strategies with respect to monitoring for unreasonable examination behaviors and identifying strategies to confront any such situations—both with respect to individual patent applications and to policy-level approaches.

Gilbert Hyatt

Gilbert Hyatt’s academic and professional experiences demonstrate an impressive aptitude in engineering. He has a B.S. in electrical engineering and an M.S. in computer engineering and  has been an engineer at the Hughes Aircraft Company, Boeing and at Teledyne, Inc. Hyatt was a prominent aerospace consultant through the 1970s and 1980s and was successfully recruited in the early 1990s by billionaire Sheldon Adelson to develop virtual reality technology for theater shows.

However, Hyatt is perhaps most well-known in relation to his patent with priority claims dating back to 1970, titled “Single Chip Integrated Circuit Computer Architecture”. After years of appeals, in 1990, the USPTO granted the patent, which became the first patent to be granted on the microprocessor. Hyatt conceived the idea after quitting his job as an engineer at Teledyne Inc. and depleting his savings while working in his spare bedroom. During this time, he built and tested thousands of circuits with a primitive oscilloscope before arriving at suitable circuit-design configurations. Hyatt founded Micro Computer, Inc. in 1968, after having built an oversized prototype of the microprocessor. He received seed money from an investor, opened the company’s office, and 25 employees were hired. The intention was that the company would build small computers using the microprocessor technology to control machine tools in factories. However, those ambitions ended after multiple investors unsuccessfully tried to persuade Hyatt to give up patent rights to the technology if the company closed or was sold. Some of the patent claims of the microprocessor patent were withdrawn in 1996 after an extended interference litigation with Texas Instruments. However, the rest of the patent claims lived to a ripe old age of 17 years before expiring. Other Hyatt patents directed to the microprocessor, the personal computer, and various computer memory technologies were untouched by the interference litigation.

While significant, the 1990 microprocessor patent was only one of Hyatt’s hundreds of patent filings. Being a strong believer in the patent system, Hyatt filed many patent applications disclosing technology discoveries in various fields. Many (such as the aforementioned microprocessor patent granted in 1990) were filed before June 8, 1995, which means that a patent term of any patent issued thereupon is defined to be the greater of 20 years from the earliest effective filing date and 17 years from the patent grant (MPEP § 2701). Some of Hyatt’s patent applications were filed between June 8. 1995 and May 28, 2000. As a result of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), any patent issuing from a “post-GATT” patent application (filed on or after June 8, 1995) would have a patent term that would extend to 20 years from the earliest effective filing date. The term may be further extended if issuance was delayed due to an interference or derivation proceeding, secrecy order, or appellate review by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board or a Federal Court (MPEP § 2720). However, for patent applications filed in this time period (June 8, 1995-May 28, 2000), patent term adjustments for other delays of the USPTO were/are unavailable. In 1975, Hyatt also passed the Patent Bar and became a patent agent, and he is a pro-se inventor for most of his patent applications.

As noted, Hyatt has filed hundreds of patent applications. Many are hundreds of pages long with many patent claims covering many inventive features. Most have extended patent priority chains. However, Hyatt paid for this complexity. The USPTO required payment of substantial extra claim fees, so the government fees for these patent applications were millions of dollars. And it was the USPTO that determined what these extra claim fees should be, which set them to a price that was sufficient to examine a more complex patent application. But Hyatt alleges that the USPTO has not been fairly examining his patent applications and instead has been acting in bad faith.

Mandamus Complaint Filed with The EDVA Court

Hyatt’s Mandamus Complaint alleges that problems began in the mid-1990s, when then-Commissioner Bruce Lehman launched a major campaign to crack down on “submarine patents”. Multiple USPTO officials (including Commissioner Lehman, former Deputy Commissioner Lawrence Goffney, former Group Director Gerald Goldberg, Supervisory Patent Examiner Richard Hjerpe and Examiner Jose Couso) allegedly verbally informed Hyatt that the USPTO would no longer issue patents to him. Four of his patent applications were drawn back into prosecution after being allowed to issue as a patent and after payment of the issue fee. The Complaint alleges that Hyatt’s patent applications “were ‘parked’ in ‘Phantom Art Units where no work was ever done” and that they were excluded from statistics relied upon by the Government Accountability Office and Inspector General of the Department of Commerce.

Disdain Toward Hyatt: In the early 2000s, the USPTO established a new art unit that the agency refers to as “the Hyatt Unit”, which only examines Hyatt’s patent applications. Richard Hjerpe was the Supervisory Patent Examiner of this art unit. At a time at which he was supervising all of Hyatt’s patent applications, Hjerpe sent the following email to multiple USPTO officials, including the current and former Group Director and now-current Deputy Commissioner for Patent Operations, regarding Hyatt’s litigation against the California Franchise Tax Board:

Yuk, Yuk, Yuk… Gilbert trying to defend himself in the US Supreme Court??…there is some humor in here somewhere…maybe justice will prevail after all! I have a new-found respect for the wonderful state of California and tax collectors everywhere!

The Complaint asserts that this email reflects the “disdain” that Hjerpe had towards Hyatt and that Hjerpe believed that the sentiment was shared by the recipients of the email. 

Extensive Inaction: Multiple examples of substantial and unusual USPTO delays of action are asserted in the Complaint. For example, after U.S. Application Number 07/763,395 was allowed and its issue fee was paid, the agency withdrew it from issue in April 1997. Following this withdrawal, the agency took no further action on the patent application for 16 additional years, despite Hyatt petitioning for action. This patent application is still pending 22 years after it was allowed to issue, and the issue fee was paid. Similarly, the USPTO withdrew U.S. Application Number 08/433,307 from patent issuance in May 1997 and took no action on the patent application until 2013, despite Hyatt’s petitioning for action. 

SAWS: For decades, the USPTO operated the Sensitive Application Warning System (SAWS program). A patent application could be flagged as a SAWS application if it met any of hundreds of vague and broad criteria. For example, two criteria included “applications with pioneering scope” and patent applications “which if issued would potentially generate extensive media coverage” embarrassing to the USPTO. Other criteria included “submarine” patent applications and long-pending patent applications filed before June 8, 1995. Once a patent application was entered into the SAWS program, an examiner him/herself could not allow the patent application for issuance. Rather, a proposed allowance would need to be approved by multiple senior USPTO officials. Previous studies found that, on average, SAWS applications were found to be associated with lower allowance rates, higher rejection counts and longer prosecution. Hyatt’s Complaint asserts that then USPTO Deputy Commissioner Joseph Rolla indicated that all of Hyatt’s patent applications were subject to the SAWS program or to equivalent restrictions. Though the agency officially closed the SAWS program in 2015, the Complaint asserts that the SAWS program or its equivalent is still in operation.

Vexatious Rejections: The Complaint further alleges that Hyatt’s patent applications are being “buried … in vexatious rejections and objections so as to delay prosecution, delay final agency action subject to judicial review and prevent their issuance”. To support this allegation, the Complaint quotes Federal Circuit judge Kimberly Moore in her dissenting opinion in Hyatt v. Doll (576 F.3d 1246, 1289 (Fed. Cir. 2009)): “An average of 21 rejections per claim is hardly proportional. Mr. Hyatt was forced to appeal 45 independent issues to the [USPTO] Board [of Appeals] when the average [for all other appeals] is two …. Mr. Hyatt prevailed on 92% of all the examiner’s rejections at the Board level.”

Blocking Appeals: Hyatt has filed Appeal Briefs for many of his patent applications. However, before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) can assume jurisdiction over an appeal, the USPTO must file an Examiner’s Answer to the Appeal Brief. MPEP § 1207.02 indicates that an Examiner’s Answer is to be issued within two months from the Appeal Brief. The Complaint asserts that the USPTO has refused to issue Examiner’s Answers for more than 80 of Hyatt’s appeals between 2000 and 2013. For example, the Complaint indicates that an Appeal Brief for U.S. Application Number 08/463,118 was filed in 2004. Hyatt petitioned in 2007 and 2009 for an Examiner’s Answer to be issued, yet no Examiner’s Answer was ever issued, nor did the USPTO ever decide the petitions. As another example, patent applications 05/134,958 and 05/135,040 were filed in 1971 (this is not a typo, they were filed more than 45 years ago). The Complaint asserts that the USPTO’s records and Hyatt’s records indicate that Hyatt responded to a November 1989 final Office Action by filing a Notice of Appeal and Appeal Brief in 1990 and that nearly three decades later, an Examiner’s Answer had yet to be issued.

Suspensions of Action: The USPTO can issue “suspensions” to pause examination of a patent application. MPEP § 709 indicates that suspensions are to be avoided if possible and that if a suspension is initiated, it “should be terminated immediately once the reason for initiating the suspension no longer exists”. The Complaint states: “[F]our of Mr. Hyatt’s patent applications were suspended more than ten times apiece, more than 180 were suspended seven to nine times, and more than 120 were suspended five or six times. … [B]etween 2007 and 2012 alone, the PTO issued 2,200 suspensions—amounting to 1,100 years of aggregate delay—on Mr. Hyatt’s patent applications.” 

Ignoring Special Status: A patent application that has been pending more than five years is deemed “special” for expedited action and is to be handled out of turn (MPEP § 1704). The Complaint indicates that Hyatt filed over one thousand petitions for action on his patent applications and numerous requests for status updates. The USPTO allegedly dismissed the petitions rather than denying them. (Denials are subject to judicial review under MPEP § 1002.02). Allegedly, in 184 of the agency’s responses, the USPTO “stated that the applications were already entitled to priority in examination because they were ‘special’ under PTO policy, dismissed the petitions as moot, and promised that the examiner would be told that Mr. Hyatt’s patent applications are ‘appropriate for expedited action’.” The Complaint asserts that examiners were never so informed, such that the responses included willful misrepresentations and that the USPTO delayed many more years before acting on these patent applications on the merits.

Evidentiary Hearing

Judge Ellis of the Federal Court in the EDVA decided to hear Hyatt’s case against the USPTO based upon the agency’s alleged “bad faith” treatment of him. More specifically, the issue at hand focuses on whether the USPTO has any official or unofficial order or policy (which could include, in the words of Judge Ellis “a secret sort of agreement” or “in effect, a conspiracy not to give [Mr. Hyatt] any patents”) indicating that patents are not to be issued to Hyatt. An evidentiary hearing was held on June 20, 2019, and multiple USPTO personnel were called as witnesses.

Gregory Morse was one of these witnesses. He has been the examiner of Art Unit 2615 (“the Hyatt Unit”) since March 2013. Morse was asked to review the prosecution histories and/or provide testimonies corresponding to several of Hyatt’s patent applications and to explain USPTO delays.

With respect to U.S. Application Number 08/599,450, the USPTO issued no substantive action between February 25, 2002 and July 6, 2018, amounting to over 16 years of agency inaction. Due to the post-GATT and pre-patent-term-adjustment filing date, the patent application ceased to have any potential patent term on or about January 19, 2016. Morse explained: “I actually lost track of it” and did not know why the examiner had not acted on it. With respect to U.S. Application Number 08/762,606, the USPTO issued no substantive action between March 3, 2004 and June 15, 2016, amounting to over 12 years of agency inaction. Morse could not explain why there was no action during his time of supervision.

Three of Hyatt’s patent applications (U.S. Application Numbers 08/471,799, 08/470,897 and 08/470,075) were reviewed by the USPTO Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (now the Patent Trial and Appeal Board). For each of these three patent applications and with respect to at least some of the pending claims, the Board reversed each and every corresponding rejection. The Board decision and any reconsideration decision for these matters were issued between May 2005 and November 2007, yet the USPTO has yet to issue any allowance or office action. Thus, the agency has refrained from issuing any office action or allowance on these patent applications for 12-14 years, despite the fact that the examiners’ rejections were already reviewed and reversed by the Board. Morse acknowledged that the Board decisions for these matters were in favor of Hyatt and that the USPTO Manuel for Patent Examining Procedures indicates that, if the Board decision is clearly in favor of the applicant, that the patent application is to be issued. Hyatt’s counsel then asked: “What, is it, if anything, about the ‘799, ‘897, and ‘075 patent applications that has made it difficult for the [USPTO] to mail an office action on them in the six years since you’ve been the head of the Hyatt Unit?” Morse responded: “I don’t know”.

Morse and Judge Ellis indicated that Hyatt’s patent applications are more complicated than most, and that this added complexity likely contributed to at least some of the agency delay. However, as noted above, he had paid substantial USPTO fees as a result of this increased complexity. Further, the testimony also indicated that Hyatt seemed to have been complying with agency requests for facilitating simpler examination by substantially reducing claim sets to be examined and identifying support for claims.

Hyatt’s counsel argued that these examples show that the conduct of the USPTO indicated that there was some unofficial policy or order not to issue patents to Hyatt.

Judge Ellis has been consistent in his messages to the USPTO counsel and other USPTO officials and witnesses appearing in his courtroom that Hyatt’s applications must be promptly examined. During the June 20 Hearing, Judge Ellis conveyed the same sentiment. At that hearing , referring to examining Hyatt’s patent applications in a timely and unbiased manner, Judge Ellis told the USPTO to “get it done” 11 times. Judge Ellis ordered the USPTO to provide “a list of all actions it has taken to examine Hyatt’s patent applications between June 3, 2019 and July 26, 2019. He further explained:

“We’re here today on something [for which] we shouldn’t be here. No one doubts that this man has filed applications that are, in a bizarre way, way beyond anything you see. … But he filed it. And he wants it examined, and the law permits him to have it to have it examined. … [M]y strong advice to you is[:] Do it; get it done.”



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Join the Discussion

36 comments so far.

  • [Avatar for Joachim Martillo]
    Joachim Martillo
    July 27, 2019 07:35 pm

    angry dude@24

    Hyatt has spent a lot of money at the USPTO. The USPTO should issue the patents and repay him all the money he spent because of USPTO gaming of the system. It is obvious fraud in inducement and sounds in torts (FTCA)

    USPTO behavior is unlawful under the APA and criminal under 18 U.S. Code §?1001 (Statements or entries generally), 18 U.S. Code §?371 (Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud United States), the STOCK Act, and 26 U.S. Code §?7201 (Attempt to evade or defeat tax).

    Because the human race desperately needs to encourage invention to counteract climate change, I would argue that there is a fairly easily identifiable corrupt group, which is based within the USPTO and which threatens modern civilization. This group’s actions and intention probably constitutes a hitherto never identified criminal act and intention, which together may be called omnigenocide.

    Charging this corrupt group under 18 U.S. Code §?1091 (Genocide) is probably sufficient and may stimulate the USPTO to clean up its act. Maximum penalty under 18 U.S. Code §?1091 includes death by hanging but it not limited to this punishment.

  • [Avatar for Benny]
    July 22, 2019 01:40 pm

    The correct term is ” a warren of rabbit holes “.. There are no rabbit holes in the ocean.

  • [Avatar for Rene]
    July 22, 2019 10:41 am

    Joachim Martillo July @32

    It’s all sounding like yet another deep rabbit hole in an ocean of rabbit holes. Is there anything left to be trusted…(rhetorical)

  • [Avatar for Joachim Martillo]
    Joachim Martillo
    July 19, 2019 09:29 pm

    I meant the following.

    “FBI and SEC investigators should metaphorically be giving senior USPTO officials seriously deep proctological examinations.”

  • [Avatar for Joachim Martillo]
    Joachim Martillo
    July 19, 2019 12:49 pm

    You guys seem to be missing the forest for the trees.

    So Hyatt obtained a patent that made claims that were arguably speculative and not prophetic. Is it really worthwhile to the USPTO to spend 30 years in punishing Hyatt or to spend a decade in making my mother, my erstwhile business partner, and his brother waste money in chasing a patent for an application that was in SAWS because it was pre-GATT? $1.5 million is a lot of money to them, but it’s penny ante in the realm of governmental corruption.

    When we collected information on unlawful and on criminal activities, we found evidence of trading info on patent-issuance or on claim cancellation that could move markets, as well as some very good evidence of payoffs and of shakedowns. The layers of criminality seem to include crimes related to the STOCK Act, corrupt organizations, and defeating taxes.

    FBI and the investigators should metaphorically be giving senior USPTO officials seriously deep proctological examinations.

  • [Avatar for Mark Syman]
    Mark Syman
    July 18, 2019 10:27 am

    Hi B: The USPTO has a docketing system. It was very clear to the SPEs and the Examiners that no action was being taken. They knew what they were doing. The USPTO is lying.

  • [Avatar for Jeff Lindsay]
    Jeff Lindsay
    July 18, 2019 09:09 am

    Thank you, Gene, for taking a stand to expose this outrageous case. It epitomizes the corruption and arrogance that has harmed the entire innovation ecosystem of the U.S. We must hold the USPTO accountable for this and root out the extensive corruption and ineptitude behind this.

  • [Avatar for Josh Malone]
    Josh Malone
    July 17, 2019 11:13 pm

    If Hyatt’s patent takes 30 years to issue, does that mean it will take 100 years to enforce???? The PTAB will revoke it. The court will declare it an abstract idea. The Federal Circuit will remand it 3 or 4 times. At least Hyatt’s grandchildren will know that they can file and produce their inventions in China if they want to prosper.

  • [Avatar for Pro Say]
    Pro Say
    July 17, 2019 09:59 pm

    Eli @ 23: Thanks much to both you and Gil.

    Great interview. Great information. Great insight.

    Especially for independent inventors and — if they have such — their counsel as well.

    Everyone — if you haven’t already done so, you need to listen to Eli’s interview.

  • [Avatar for Joachim Martillo]
    Joachim Martillo
    July 17, 2019 06:42 pm

    The Patent Prosecution entity (RealVirt LLC) for my ‘161 Application was a plaintiff in a class action suit based on violation of the implied-in-fact contract between the USPTO and the patent applicant. The CFC dismissed the case, and the dismissal was affirmed without opinion under Fed. Cir. R. 36.

    I have never been a shareholder in RealVirt, and I seemed to be busy with dying during most of the period of the litigation. It was never clear to me that an implied-in-fact contract was within the purview of the Tucker Act. I thought that bringing a complaint under the FTCA in federal district court for the tort of fraud in inducement might have been more promising.

    Now that I have almost completely recovered, I am considering bringing such a lawsuit against the USPTO.

  • [Avatar for Vicki]
    July 17, 2019 05:16 pm

    Absolutely disgraceful! So their excuse is either that the PTO is a corrupt or completely inept organization? Have these people no shame? And exactly how will any one of them be held accountable? The Secretary of Commerce should clean house and can the lot of them.

  • [Avatar for Jianqing Wu]
    Jianqing Wu
    July 17, 2019 05:15 pm

    I had same experiences. So, keep waiting…. I hope someone will do more research and expose this kind of practices to the public.

  • [Avatar for angry dude]
    angry dude
    July 17, 2019 02:24 pm

    Rene Nielson @14

    “I don’t think I will ever see a patent”

    And maybe it’s a good thing for you..

    Trust me on this – I saw my patent and what patent litigation looks like – all before AIA

    Total waste of resources for me and my family … BUT… it did “promote the progress” – on my own time and effort and money (not to mention all the negative emotions…)

    Thanks but no thanks

  • [Avatar for Eli Mazour]
    Eli Mazour
    July 17, 2019 01:44 pm

    If you’re interested in learning more about Gil Hyatt’s fascinating story, check out my recent Clause 8 podcast with him: https://www.clause8.co/

    Coincidentally, I interviewed Gil the morning before the hearing.

  • [Avatar for Joachim Martillo]
    Joachim Martillo
    July 17, 2019 03:57 am

    I don’t think there is a list of all the patent applications (and also issued patents under reissue, reexaminations, post-grant review proceedings) targeted in SAWS, but there were many. Teresa Stanek (Mens) Rea seems to have transmitted to Congress a list of all pre-GATT patent applications in SAWS. See page 10 of Fixing the US Patent System (Part II): Constitutional Amendment.

  • [Avatar for Rene]
    July 16, 2019 10:01 pm

    Reading the Hyatt story and the comments here blows my mind. I wish I could get back the time and money I spent in my efforts to obtain a US patent. Mostly the time, a great deal of time. I think the whole US show is about to come to an end. There’s so much stinking corruption in the good old USA. I believe in not long a time, the US economy also being one vast fraud, will implode.

  • [Avatar for Perkins]
    July 16, 2019 08:00 pm

    Does anybody know where to find, or even know of, a list of applications which fell into the SAWS program?

  • [Avatar for Craig Gordon]
    Craig Gordon
    July 16, 2019 06:05 pm

    Thank you for your enlightening article. The invention of the single chip microprocessor is one of the greatest inventions of our time. Determining the players responsible in the conspiracy to cheat Mr. Hyatt out of his rightful patents and the benefits therefrom needs to be done and exposed for all to see. Those engaged in violation of the law need to be held accountable. That includes those individuals and Corporations in private industry who have colluded with the patent office and its employees to break the law.

  • [Avatar for Joachim Martillo]
    Joachim Martillo
    July 16, 2019 10:30 am

    It may seem bizarre to those that have not worked in the more obscure parts of patent law, but I may be making some progress in combating USPTO fraud and criminality in the Appellate Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. This article reachable from LinkedIn discusses my ongoing effort.

  • [Avatar for Joachim Martillo]
    Joachim Martillo
    July 16, 2019 10:25 am

    Post Grant Review proceedings in the context of the USPTO are practically designed for “bait-and-switch” con scams. For this reason I recommend a Constitutional Amendment to forestall Congress from legislatively encouraging and fostering the criminal environment that has developed at the USPTO.

    This link here discusses my experience with SAWS and the need for a Constitutional Amendment.

  • [Avatar for B]
    July 16, 2019 09:52 am

    “I actually lost track of it” and did not know why the examiner had not acted on it. With respect to U.S. Application Number 08/762,606, the USPTO issued no substantive action between March 3, 2004 and June 15, 2016, amounting to over 12 years of agency inaction. Morse could not explain why there was no action during his time of supervision.

    It’s almost as if the USPTO has yet to invent or discover a DOCKETING SYSTEM.

  • [Avatar for Ternary]
    July 16, 2019 09:29 am

    “With respect to U.S. Application Number 08/762,606, the USPTO issued no substantive action between March 3, 2004 and June 15, 2016, amounting to over 12 years of agency inaction. Morse could not explain why there was no action during his time of supervision.”

    This is just not credible testimony. It paints the USPTO as either an inept organization or in the alternative as a corrupt organization. This has gone on under different Directors. The PTO has potentially an enormous liability and everyone had probably hoped that Inventor Hyatt would just go away. He didn’t. I cannot begin to imagine the anguish and anger that was forced upon Mr. Hyatt by the PTO.

    It has become a mess of Augean proportions. An example of the Administrative State gone rogue! It seems the time has come to clean up this mess.

  • [Avatar for Rene Nielson]
    Rene Nielson
    July 16, 2019 09:12 am

    I have filed for a US patent. I have paid my fees and have jumped through all the hoops. I submitted my drawings strictly according to 37 CFR and all the sub rules. I was told, orally, in no uncertain terms, that I had to ignore parts of 37 CFR and do it differently. I believe every detail of Hyatt’s story. I don’t think I will ever see a patent.

  • [Avatar for former examiner]
    former examiner
    July 16, 2019 08:23 am

    “Examiners will starting getting a modicum (1 hour!) of extra examining time for cases with large numbers of claims, lengthy IDSes, and the like, fairly soon. Start of FY20, most likely. I guess that’s something?”

    Just file some boilerplate and get your examiner an extra hour. I wonder how long that will last.

  • [Avatar for Anon2]
    July 16, 2019 07:46 am

    I didn’t catch that… the Patent Office of what lawless savage country?
    No wait, is this America we are talking about?

    Whose America is this?

  • [Avatar for Mo]
    July 16, 2019 07:45 am

    Interesting to note various delays have persisted decades over several administrations, commissioners and directors. I wonder how the ex parte reexams will handled.

  • [Avatar for Benny]
    July 16, 2019 07:34 am

    Methinks Gilbert might yet profit from the book/movie royalties from such an intriguing story.

  • [Avatar for Night Writer]
    Night Writer
    July 16, 2019 06:43 am

    I had an application that I am pretty sure was SAW’ed.

    I used to have a client that had me file about 90 claims with each application. It was ridiculous in that the examiners were always complaining about it and trying to find some way to out. We paid a small fortune for those claims and then had to put up with the examiners causing trouble to get them allowed.

  • [Avatar for Richard Beem]
    Richard Beem
    July 15, 2019 11:41 pm

    Well stated, Kate. You marshaled the facts in a logical order that is easy to follow.

  • [Avatar for IamI]
    July 15, 2019 08:04 pm

    AAA JJ,

    Examiners will starting getting a modicum (1 hour!) of extra examining time for cases with large numbers of claims, lengthy IDSes, and the like, fairly soon. Start of FY20, most likely. I guess that’s something?

  • [Avatar for mike]
    July 15, 2019 04:27 pm

    @Anon. I find your 37 CFR 1.2 exposition and comment priceless.

  • [Avatar for Pro Say]
    Pro Say
    July 15, 2019 03:25 pm

    Thanks Kate for your most excellent exposition.

    Leaving one to say … wow; just wow.

    That our own Patent Office could treat one of the greatest American inventors of all time like this … Thomas Edison is spinning in his grave …

    Given Gil’s advancing age and monumental expenditures to protect what he is legally, morally, and ethically entitled to, it’s reasonable to assume the Patent Office is hoping / waiting for Gil to die … run out of money … or both.

    Go, Gil, go.

    Fight, Gil, fight.

    Win, Gil, win.

  • [Avatar for angry dude]
    angry dude
    July 15, 2019 03:14 pm

    The doc said “to the morgue” – to the morgue it is !

  • [Avatar for Mark Nowotarski]
    Mark Nowotarski
    July 15, 2019 02:38 pm

    Interesting. I checked on the 08 series applications listed above and none are available in PAIR. That suggests they were all filed with nonpublication requests. For what it’s worth, the last patent to issue with Gilbert P. Hyatt’s name on it was in 1997.

  • [Avatar for AAA JJ]
    AAA JJ
    July 15, 2019 11:52 am

    The PTO has been charging, collecting, and spending extra claim fees for decades without ever giving applicants, or examiners, what was paid for, which is more examining time. It’s not a secret. Why it is allowed to continue is the mystery.

  • [Avatar for Anon]
    July 15, 2019 11:33 am

    A minor point (in a much larger drama) regarding:

    Though the agency officially closed the SAWS program in 2015, the Complaint asserts that the SAWS program or its equivalent is still in operation.

    I would be remiss if I did not point out (again), that WHEN the Office finally admitted to the existence of the SAWS program, they did so in a blundering — and very telling — manner in stating that SAWS was only ONE of a handful of such clandestine programs.

    This admission guarantees that “or its equivalent” is assuredly very much in operation.

    The dagger for SAWS still applies to any and all such clandestine operations (no matter how the Office wants to try to spin these as “quality and internal – no need to share their workings”) (emphasis added):

    37 CFR 1.2: 1.2 Business to be transacted in writing.

    All business with the Patent and Trademark Office should be transacted in writing. The personal attendance of applicants or their attorneys or agents at the Patent and Trademark Office is unnecessary. The action of the Patent and Trademark Office will be based exclusively on the written record in the Office. No attention will be paid to any alleged oral promise, stipulation, or understanding in relation to which there is disagreement or doubt.

    As these secret programs are NOT on the written record (to which, as a matter of due process, the applicant has every right of access), the Office is in violation of the “action based exclusively” portion of the rule of law that binds the Patent Office.