New Citations at Further Report

Date Published

New citations from new FERs should only be raised at further report stage where they are better than existing or previous citations with respect to the claims under consideration.  A citation is “better” if it would invalidate claimed subject matter not anticipated by the citations raised in previous reports and/or is more closely related to the inventive concept as opposed to disclosing additional trivial features.  Consequently, such a citation would lead to the claims being restricted further than would otherwise be the case.  (Note that the raising of new citations in this situation is not considered to be piecemeal examination; see 2.1.5 Inconsistent or Piecemeal Examination.)