Posts Tagged: "patent bar examination"

On the Road in March 2015

I will be criss-crossing the country again in March 2015, with stops in Washington, DC, Chicago, Michigan, and San Fransisco. What follows is my schedule for the month. If you are in the area come out to say hello.

Everything You Need to Know About the Patent Bar Exam

In recent years the registration exam to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office has undergone significant change… There will be yet another update to the USPTO registration exam at the end of January 2014. The updated examination will additionally cover: (1) First-Inventor-to-File Final Rules; (2) Patent Law Treaties Implementation Act of 2012; and (3) Changes to Representation of Others Before the USPTO Final Rules. Thus, the exam that will be given beginning on or about January 21, 2014, will be substantially different than the examination given at the beginning of April 2011.

Patent Bar Exam: MPEP Search Strategies

Those days are long gone, for nearly a decade now, but when you do take the examination you will be provided with an electronic copy of the Manual of Patent Examining Procedures. Don’t fool yourself though — the fact that this is an “open book” exam does not mean that it is easy or that you will be able to “wing it” and rely on the MPEP as a crutch. Many people have difficulty finishing the exam and it is a recipe for failure to simply plan to rely on the MPEP to get you through the exam. This is particularly true today where much of the examination is based on new material not found in the MPEP and only available in Federal Register Notices.

Beware Patent Bar Exam Study Advice

Perhaps the most ridiculous suggestion given (step 8) is to download the free PTO Patent Bar Exam Review Package from CNET. The WikiHow article explains that this free package contains MPEP 8th edition revisions 1 and 2. Why would you ever want to even consider the 8th edition revisions 1 and 2 when you will be tested on the 8th edition revision 9? Revision 9 was published August 2012. Revision 1 was published February 2003 and revision 2 was published May 2004. Why would anyone who is at all serious use materials that are a decade old to take an exam that is constantly being updated and refreshed with new materials? If you study the wrong MPEP edition you have absolutely NO chance to pass the patent bar exam.

USPTO to Update Patent Registration Exam April 2013

The Office of Enrollment and Discipline (OED) of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), has announced that the patent bar examination, which is sometimes called the patent registration exam or patent agent’s exam, will be updated again effective early April 2013. No date certain has yet been announced by the OED, but based on the previous updating of the exam when new rules became effective on September 16, 2012, it can be expected that the patent bar exam will be updated sometime during the first week of April.

Patent Bar Blues: New Rules, Old MPEP Make for Difficult Study

The unfortunate thing is that all of these individuals were getting this question incorrect and anyone who relied on this information moving forward would get the question incorrect. The MPEP section that points to one answer as correct cites an old version of the Rule. The Rule was modified in a Federal Register Notice, which is a testable document and supersedes the MPEP. The new language of the Rule has not yet made it into the MPEP section. The moral of the story is that you have to be very careful when you rely on these forum sites and take advice from someone who is either studying or just passed the exam. They may be giving you good information, but they may be leading you astray.

The Latest Intelligence on the Updated Patent Bar Exam

Generally, the Patent Exam remains as predictable as ever in terms of what the USPTO wants you to know. The USPTO concentrates on those issues that lead to loss of rights and prejudice to your client’s situation. They want to be sure you know how to get a filing date, assert priority, respond to Office Actions, start and advance an appeal, etc. As to the post-grant procedures added by AIA Phase 2, the focus is on how they are started, timing, and thresholds of proof.

USPTO Updates Registration Examination for New Patent Practitioners

As part of a wider effort aimed at stakeholders fully benefitting from the sweeping reforms of the America Invents Act (AIA), the U.S. Department of Commerce’s United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) announced today that it has updated a critical examination for applicants seeking to practice in patent cases before the Office. The USPTO anticipates making another update to the examination when the first-inventor-to-file provisions of the AIA become effective in March 2013.

Patent Bar Exam Refresh: PTO Now Testing New Materials

We also know from past history that when the Patent Office first starts to test new material they disproportionately weight it in the database of questions so you are likely to be heavily tested. We anticipate that the newly testable material will generate between 15 to 20 questions on the Patent Bar Exam starting immediately, or nearly immediately. This newly testable information comes on the heels of AIA phase 1 and KSR, Bilski and 112 Guidelines that all started to become tested in April 2011. We anticipate that the newly testable material that has come online since April 2011 will make up approximately one-third of your exam. That is 3o-35 questions.

USPTO Changes Format and Links to MPEP

Not only can’t you find the relevant MPEP sections you are looking for through a Google search, but you also cannot find the relevant statutes or CFR sections using Google. For example, I typed in “35 usc 304” into Google. The first link was to the USPTO.gov website, like it almost always is. Unfortunately, however, upon clicking the link I was taken to another “Page Not Found” screen. Ultimately you can get to it by clicking on the new MPEP link provided, scrolling down to the L Appendix, clicking on the L Appendix link and then scrolling down to Section 304. Not a lot more time, but hardly as easy to find information as it was just a few days ago.

Disjointed Patent Claims and the Search for Prior Art

U.S. Patent No. 6,757,068, which relates to what is described as a sourceless tracking system. See AOP Patent Study DEV-1754. The claims of this patent are extremely broad and suffer from defects not associated with prior art. A patent like the ‘068 patent is cat-nip to the anti-patent community and an all too familiar illustration that the Patent Office makes mistakes. Claim 1 is an example of something that would be deemed inappropriate on the patent bar examination because it is horribly disjointed. It should have received a rejection under 35 U.S.C. 112, 2d paragraph.

Practice Before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board

The one thing that will be markedly different from federal court practice, however, is that for the most part only registered Patent Attorneys or Patent Agents will be able to appear before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. The Patent Office considered broadly permitting practitioners not registered to practice by the Office to represent parties at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. Notwithstanding, the Patent Office decided against allowing non-registered practitioners from representing parties at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board the proposed rules set forth in February 2012. The USPTO explained this was because they believed that making the practice open to non-registered attorneys would present burdens on the Office in administering the trials and in completing the trial within the established timeframe and Office rules.

Legal Jobs: Patent Job Market Shows Signs of Improvement

Alissa J. Holterman is the Assistant Director of Career Services at Loyola University Chicago School of Law, has been the primary administrator of for the last 5 years. Holterman says there are objective signs of improvement in the patent job market for new and recent law school graduates, and real reason for optimism. “This year there will be 123 employers are coming to PLIP, and they’ve asked for a total of 232 day-long interview schedules. That’s almost a 20% increase in employers since last year, and more than a 20% increase in interviews, ” says Holterman. “That’s more employers and interviews than any year since 2008.”

Becoming Patent Bar Eligible: What Courses are Acceptable?

When determining whether to accept a particular course one particularly important consideration is whether the course has been accepted for college-level credit for a Category A degree at an accredited U.S. college or university. We know that the USPTO will accept courses taken at Community Colleges if those courses would count toward a degree listed on Category A. Indeed, some who are short credits will take them at Community Colleges and then be admitted to take the exam. The same rationale seems to apply when OED is evaluating online courses. So before you take a class at a Community College or online make sure that the credits for the course could be used by someone pursuing a Category A degree. If the answer is that the course would count toward the credit requirements for a Category A degree you should be fine.

Buyer Beware! Counterfeit Patent Bar Review Courses on eBay

The posting says that the purchaser will acquire a version of the course that was first purchased in March 2012 and includes 36 audio CDs, 8 video DVDs and Patware 9.0.  That is simply not possible because by March 2012 the courses being sold did not include any of this.  John White and I updated the course at the beginning of 2011 to take into account the then newly tested material, which included KSR rationales and guidelines, Bilski guidelines and the 112 guidelines.  At this time in the beginning of 2011 audio CDs and DVDs ceased to be provided, and Patware was no longer available in disk form. The last version of Patware on disk was indeed Patware 9.0, but that did not include any questions on KSR, Bilski or the 112 guidelines.  Simply stated, a course that included audio CDs, DVDs and Patware on disk had to have been purchased at the very beginning of 2011 or earlier.  The claims in this ad are simply false.