Citation a Secret Case

Date Published

Sections 152 and 173 include provisions prohibiting the publication of certain applications ("secret cases"). An application of this type cannot be used as the basis of a "whole of contents" objection because it is not published. However, if the prohibition order is revoked a novelty objection may then apply.

In the unlikely event that examiners become aware of a "whole of contents" objection based on a "secret case", they:

  • must not notify the applicant of a potential "whole of contents" objection since it is uncertain whether the application will be published;
  • must not identify the citation to the applicant, as this would be an effective disclosure of the contents of the citation and contrary to the prohibition order; and

  • should refer the case to the Security Officer for consideration of security issues for both the application and the citation; see 2.13.13 Examining Cases Subject to a Prohibition Order.