In addition to being more expensive than RCEs and interviews, appeals also take much, much longer to reach a resolution. It takes an average of 33 months for an appeal at the USPTO to make it from the notice of appeal stage to a final PTAB decision on the merits. That is a significant amount of time (almost three years, in fact), for an application’s outcome to be up in the air. This perhaps explains at least one of the reasons why appeals are the least common way to respond to a final rejection.
However, there are several art unit groups where an appeal might make more sense if time is of the essence, including:
10. 1750: Electrochemistry, Solar Cells, Thermoelectrics (29.1 months)
9. 2660: Audio Signals (29.0 months)
8. 2480: Recording; Compression (29.0 months)
7. 1720: Fuel Cells, Battery, Flammable Gas, Electrophotography, Photolithography (28.5 months)
6. 1710: Coating, Etching, Cleaning, Single Crystal Growth (28.4 months)
5. 1730: Metallurgy, Metal Working, Inorganic Chemistry, Catalyst (28.4 months)
4. 1760: Organic Chemistry, Polymers, Compositions (28.3 months)
3. 1780: Food, Miscellaneous Articles, Stock Material (28.3 months)
2. 1770: Chemical Apparatus, Separation and Purification, Liquid and Gas Contact Apparatus (28.1 months)
1. 2410/2460: Multiplex; VoIP (26.3 months)
Even though appeals are generally faster in these art unit groups than elsewhere at the USPTO, appeals are still significantly more complex than other final rejection responses. That’s where Juristat Examiner Reports can help—by letting prosecutors know what they are getting themselves into right from the start, as well as guiding them through prosecution with data-backed insights. To see how big data could revolutionize your patent practice, give Juristat a try (for free!) today.
All data herein was based on applications that received at least one final rejection between 7/1/2010 and 6/31/2015, and for which a final PTAB decision on the merits was obtained between January 2011 and December 2015.
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