MPEP 1213.03
Publication of and Public Access to Board Decision

This is the Ninth Edition of the MPEP, Revision 08.2017, Last Revised in January 2018

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1213.03    Publication of and Public Access to Board Decision [R-11.2013]

37 C.F.R. 41.6 Public availability of Board records.

  • (a) Publication.
    • (1) Generally. Any Board action is available for public inspection without a party’s permission if rendered in a file open to the public pursuant to §1.11 of this title or in an application that has been published in accordance with §§ 1.211 to1.221 of this title. The Office may independently publish any Board action that is available for public inspection.
    • (2) Determination of special circumstances. Any Board action not publishable under paragraph (a)(1) of this section may be published or made available for public inspection if the Director believes that special circumstances warrant publication and a party does not, within two months after being notified of the intention to make the action public, object in writing on the ground that the action discloses the objecting party’s trade secret or other confidential information and states with specificity that such information is not otherwise publicly available. If the action discloses such information, the party shall identify the deletions in the text of the action considered necessary to protect the information. If the affected party considers that the entire action must be withheld from the public to protect such information, the party must explain why. The party will be given time, not less than twenty days, to request reconsideration and seek court review before any contested portion of the action is made public over its objection.
  • (b) Record of proceeding.
    • (1) The record of a Board proceeding is available to the public unless a patent application not otherwise available to the public is involved.
    • (2) Notwithstanding paragraph (b)(1) of this section, after a final Board action in or judgment in a Board proceeding, the record of the Board proceeding will be made available to the public if any involved file is or becomes open to the public under § 1.11 of this title or an involved application is or becomes published under §§ 1.211 to 1.221 of this title.

Any Board decision is available for public inspection without a party’s permission if rendered in a file open to the public pursuant to 37 CFR 1.11 or in an application that has been published in accordance with 37 CFR 1.211 through 1.221. The Office may independently publish any Board action that is available for public inspection.

Decisions of the Board which are open to the public are available in electronic form on the USPTO Web site (http://www.uspto.gov) in the FOIA reading room.

Any Board decision rendered in a file not open to the public pursuant to 37 CFR 1.11 or in an application that has not been published in accordance with 37 CFR 1.211 through 1.221 may be published or made available for public inspection under 37 CFR 41.6(a)(2) if the Director believes that special circumstances warrant publication.