37 CFR 11.110: Imputation of conflicts of interest; General rule

Taken from the Ninth Edition of the MPEP, Revision 07.2015, Last Revised in November 2015

Previous: §11.109 | Next: §11.111

11.110    Imputation of conflicts of interest; General rule.

  • (a) While practitioners are associated in a firm, none of them shall knowingly represent a client when any one of them practicing alone would be prohibited from doing so by §§ 11.107 or 11.109, unless:
    • (1) The prohibition is based on a personal interest of the disqualified practitioner and does not present a significant risk of materially limiting the representation of the client by the remaining practitioners in the firm; or
    • (2) The prohibition is based upon § 11.109(a) or (b), and arises out of the disqualified practitioner’s association with a prior firm, and
      • (i) The disqualified practitioner is timely screened from any participation in the matter and is apportioned no part of the fee therefrom; and
      • (ii) Written notice is promptly given to any affected former client to enable the former client to ascertain compliance with the provisions of this section, which shall include a description of the screening procedures employed; a statement of the firm’s and of the screened practitioner’s compliance with the USPTO Rules of Professional Conduct; a statement that review may be available before a tribunal; and an agreement by the firm to respond promptly to any written inquiries or objections by the former client about the screening procedures.
  • (b) When a practitioner has terminated an association with a firm, the firm is not prohibited from thereafter representing a person with interests materially adverse to those of a client represented by the formerly associated practitioner and not currently represented by the firm, unless:
    • (1) The matter is the same or substantially related to that in which the formerly associated practitioner represented the client; and
    • (2) Any practitioner remaining in the firm has information protected by §§ 11.106 and 11.109(c) that is material to the matter.
  • (c) A disqualification prescribed by this section may be waived by the affected client under the conditions stated in § 11.107.
  • (d) The disqualification of practitioners associated in a firm with former or current Federal Government lawyers is governed by § 11.111.
[Added 78 FR 20180, Apr. 3, 2013, effective May 3, 2013]