More continuation rules rumormongering: 2 continuations + 1 RCE?May 11, 2007

With the AIPLA 2007 spring meeting going on in Boston this week, there has been no shortage of rumors flying about the substance of the new continuation rules expected to be issued by the USPTO in July. According to multiple reports (all apparently originating with Hal Wegner), the substance of the rules is likely to be:

Applications yet to receive a first office action:

A "2+1" limit on continuations will be imposed, meaning that each application will be limited to two continuing applications and one RCE.

Applications already having received a first office action:

The limits will be "3+1," giving the applicant an extra continuation because prosecution has already begun.

Claim limits:

Applications will be limited to 5 independent claims and 25 total claims.

These rules are, as indicated, rumors at this point, and the final rules are still expected sometime around early July. Time will tell whether this is the final rules package. Stay tuned.

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