MPEP 602.01(c)(3)
Correction of Inventorship in an Application – Request Under 37 CFR 1.48 Filed Prior to September 16, 2012

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

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602.01(c)(3)    Correction of Inventorship in an Application – Request Under 37 CFR 1.48 Filed Prior to September 16, 2012 [R-07.2015]

[Editor Note: See MPEP § 602.01(c)(1) for requests for correction of inventorship filed on or after September 16, 2012 and MPEP § 602.01(c)(2) for a discussion of the requirements for requests to correct or update inventor name filed on or after September 16, 2012.]

I.    GENERAL INFORMATION

37 C.F.R. 1.48 (pre-AIA) Correction of inventorship in a patent application, other than a reissue application, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. 116.

  • (a) Nonprovisional application after oath/declaration filed. If the inventive entity is set forth in error in an executed § 1.63 oath or declaration in a nonprovisional application, and such error arose without any deceptive intention on the part of the person named as an inventor in error or on the part of the person who through error was not named as an inventor, the inventorship of the nonprovisional application may be amended to name only the actual inventor or inventors. Amendment of the inventorship requires:
    • (1) A request to correct the inventorship that sets forth the desired inventorship change;
    • (2) A statement from each person being added as an inventor and from each person being deleted as an inventor that the error in inventorship occurred without deceptive intention on his or her part;
    • (3) An oath or declaration by the actual inventor or inventors as required by § 1.63 or as permitted by §§ 1.42, 1.43 or § 1.47;
    • (4) The processing fee set forth in § 1.17(i); and
    • (5) If an assignment has been executed by any of the original named inventors, the written consent of the assignee (see § 3.73(b) of this chapter).
  • (b) Nonprovisional application—fewer inventors due to amendment or cancellation of claims. If the correct inventors are named in a nonprovisional application, and the prosecution of the nonprovisional application results in the amendment or cancellation of claims so that fewer than all of the currently named inventors are the actual inventors of the invention being claimed in the nonprovisional application, an amendment must be filed requesting deletion of the name or names of the person or persons who are not inventors of the invention being claimed. Amendment of the inventorship requires:
    • (1) A request, signed by a party set forth in § 1.33(b), to correct the inventorship that identifies the named inventor or inventors being deleted and acknowledges that the inventor’s invention is no longer being claimed in the nonprovisional application; and
    • (2) The processing fee set forth in § 1.17(i).
  • (c) Nonprovisional application—inventors added for claims to previously unclaimed subject matter. If a nonprovisional application discloses unclaimed subject matter by an inventor or inventors not named in the application, the application may be amended to add claims to the subject matter and name the correct inventors for the application. Amendment of the inventorship requires:
    • (1) A request to correct the inventorship that sets forth the desired inventorship change;
    • (2) A statement from each person being added as an inventor that the addition is necessitated by amendment of the claims and that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intention on his or her part;
    • (3) An oath or declaration by the actual inventors as required by § 1.63 or as permitted by §§ 1.42, 1.43, or § 1.47;
    • (4) The processing fee set forth in § 1.17(i); and
    • (5) If an assignment has been executed by any of the original named inventors, the written consent of the assignee (see § 3.73(b) of this chapter).
  • (d) Provisional application—adding omitted inventors. If the name or names of an inventor or inventors were omitted in a provisional application through error without any deceptive intention on the part of the omitted inventor or inventors, the provisional application may be amended to add the name or names of the omitted inventor or inventors. Amendment of the inventorship requires:
    • (1) A request, signed by a party set forth in § 1.33(b), to correct the inventorship that identifies the inventor or inventors being added and states that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intention on the part of the omitted inventor or inventors; and
    • (2) The processing fee set forth in § 1.17(q).

Requests under 37 CFR 1.48 filed before September 16, 2012 are governed by the provisions of 37 CFR 1.48 in effect prior to September 16, 2012 (pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48) as discussed below. However, for applications filed prior to September 16, 2012, where a 37 CFR 1.48 request is filed on or after September 16, 2012, the provisions of 37 CFR 1.48 in effect as of September 16, 2012 apply because it is the date of the request for correction that controls which version of the rule is applicable. See MPEP § 602.01(c).

If a request to correct inventorship filed before September 16, 2012 is deficient, any new request to correct the inventorship must comply with 37 CFR 1.48 as revised effective September 16, 2012.

Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) is directed at correcting the inventorship in an application where the inventorship was improperly set forth in the executed oath or declaration filed in the application. Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(b) is directed at correcting the inventorship where the executed oath or declaration had correctly set forth the inventorship but due to prosecution of the application, e.g., claim cancellation or amendment, fewer than all of the currently named inventors are the actual inventors of the remaining claims. Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(c) is directed at correcting the inventorship where the executed oath or declaration had correctly set forth the inventorship but due to amendment of the claims to include previously unclaimed but disclosed subject matter, one or more inventors of the amended subject matter must be added to the current inventorship. Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(d) is directed at provisional applications where an inventor is to be added. Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(e) is directed at provisional applications where an inventor is to be deleted. Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(f) operates to automatically correct the inventorship upon filing of a first executed oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 by any of the inventors in a nonprovisional application or upon filing of a cover sheet in a provisional application.

Requests under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48 are generally decided by the primary examiner except:

  • (A) When the application is involved in an interference (decided by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board);
  • (B) When the application is a national stage application filed under 35 U.S.C. 371 which, as of the date of filing of the request, has not been accepted as satisfying the requirements for entry into the national stage (decided in the International Patent Legal Administration); and
  • (C) When accompanied by a petition under 37 CFR 1.183 requesting waiver of a requirement under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) or (c), e.g., waiver of the statement of lack of deceptive intent by an inventor to be added or deleted, or waiver of the reexecution of the declaration by all of the inventors (decided in the Office of Petitions).

When any request for correction of inventorship under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a)-(c) is granted, the examiner will acknowledge any addition or deletion of the names of inventors by using either form paragraph 2.14 or form paragraph 2.14.01 in the next Office communication to applicant. The application will be forwarded to OPAP for issuance of a corrected filing receipt and correction of Office records.

¶ 2.14    Correction of Inventorship Under 37 CFR 1.48(a) or (c) Filed Before Sept. 16, 2012, Sufficient

In view of the request to correct inventorship under 37 CFR 1.48 and the accompanying papers filed before September 16, 2012, it has been found that this nonprovisional application, as filed, through error and without deceptive intent, improperly set forth the inventorship, and accordingly, this application has been corrected in compliance with 37 CFR 1.48 ([1]). The inventorship of this application has been changed by [2].

The application will be forwarded to the Office of Patent Application Processing (OPAP) for issuance of a corrected filing receipt, and correction of Office records to reflect the inventorship as corrected.

Examiner Note:

1. In bracket 1, insert --a-- or --c--, as appropriate.

2. In bracket 2, insert explanation of correction made, including addition or deletion of appropriate names.

3. This form paragraph should only be used if the request to correct inventorship was filed before September 16, 2012. Requests under 37 CFR 1.48 filed on or after September 16, 2012, are handled by the Office of Patent Application Processing.

¶ 2.14.01    Correction of Inventorship Under 37 CFR 1.48(b) Filed Before Sept. 16, 2012, Sufficient

In view of the request to correct inventorship under 37 CFR 1.48(b) and accompanying papers filed before September 16, 2012, the inventorship of this nonprovisional application has been changed by the deletion of [1].

The application will be forwarded to the Office of Patent Application Processing (OPAP) for issuance of a corrected filing receipt, and correction of Office records to reflect the inventorship as corrected.

Examiner Note:

1. This form paragraph is to be used only for 37 CFR 1.48(b) corrections.

2. In bracket 1, insert the names of the deleted inventor(s).

3. This form paragraph should only be used if the request to correct inventorship was filed before September 16, 2012. Requests under 37 CFR 1.48 filed on or after September 16, 2012, are handled by the Office of Patent Application Processing.

The grant or denial of a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) may result in the lack of inventorship overlap between a parent application and a continuing application and the consequent inability to claim benefit in the continuing application of the parent application’s filing date under 35 U.S.C. 120. Intervening references must then be considered.

For correction of inventorship in a patent, see 37 CFR 1.324 and MPEP § 1481.

II.    APPLICATIONS FILED UNDER 37 CFR 1.53(f) - NO OATH/DECLARATION

The Office will issue a filing receipt listing the inventors identified at the time of filing of the application even if the application was filed under 37 CFR 1.53(f) without an executed oath or declaration. A request under 37 CFR 1.48(a), (b), or (c) will not be necessary. See 37 CFR 1.48(f).

Where the first-filed executed oath or declaration was submitted prior to December 1, 1997 in an application filed without an executed oath or declaration, if the inventive entity identified on the executed oath or declaration differs from the inventive entity identified at the time of filing of the application, a request under 37 CFR 1.48(a) or (c) must also be submitted.

Example

A nonprovisional application is filed (either prior to, on or after December 1, 1997 but prior to September 16, 2012) naming A as the sole inventor without an executed oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63. Only claim 1 is presented.

A "Notice to File Missing Parts of Application" is mailed to the applicant requiring an oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63. In timely reply thereto after December 1, 1997 but prior to September 16, 2012, a preliminary amendment adding claim 2, and a declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 executed by inventors A and B are submitted with B being added in view of claim 2. A request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(c) is not required, in that pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(f)(1) will act to set forth an inventorship of A and B.

Similarly, where a preliminary amendment canceling or amending claims concomitantly requires the deletion of an inventor, such deletion may be accomplished by the submission of a first-filed executed oath or declaration on or after December 1, 1997 naming the actual inventive entity. A request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(b) would not be necessary.

III.    Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a)

37 C.F.R. (pre-AIA) 1.48 Correction of inventorship in a patent application, other than a reissue application, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. 116.

  • (a) Nonprovisional application after oath/declaration filed. If the inventive entity is set forth in error in an executed § 1.63 oath or declaration in a nonprovisional application, and such error arose without any deceptive intention on the part of the person named as an inventor in error or on the part of the person who through error was not named as an inventor, the inventorship of the nonprovisional application may be amended to name only the actual inventor or inventors. Amendment of the inventorship requires:
    • (1) A request to correct the inventorship that sets forth the desired inventorship change;
    • (2) A statement from each person being added as an inventor and from each person being deleted as an inventor that the error in inventorship occurred without deceptive intention on his or her part;
    • (3) An oath or declaration by the actual inventor or inventors as required by § 1.63 or as permitted by §§ 1.42, 1.43 or § 1.47;
    • (4) The processing fee set forth in § 1.17(i); and
    • (5) If an assignment has been executed by any of the original named inventors, the written consent of the assignee (see § 3.73(b) of this chapter).

*****

Under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a), if the correct inventor or inventors are not named in an executed oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 in a nonprovisional application for patent, the application can be amended to name only the actual inventor or inventors so long as the error in the naming of the inventor or inventors occurred without any deceptive intention on the part of the person named as an inventor in error or the person who through error was not named as an inventor.

Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) requires that the amendment be accompanied by: (1) a request to correct the inventorship that sets forth the desired inventorship change; (2) a statement from each person being added and from each person being deleted as an inventor that the error occurred without deceptive intention on his or her part; (3) an oath or declaration by each actual inventor or inventors as required by pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 or as permitted by pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.42, 1.43 or 1.47; (4) the fee set forth in 37 CFR 1.17(i); and (5) the written consent of any existing assignee, if any of the originally named inventors has executed an assignment.

Correction may be requested in cases where the person originally named as inventor was in fact not an inventor or the sole inventor of the subject matter being claimed. If such error occurred without any deceptive intention on the part of the inventor named and/or not named in error, the Office has the authority to substitute the true inventive entity for the erroneously named inventive entity. Instances where corrections can be made include changes from: a mistaken sole inventor to a different but actual sole inventor; a mistakenly identified sole inventor to different, but actual, joint inventors; a sole inventor to joint inventors to include the original sole inventor; erroneously identified joint inventors to different but actual joint inventors; erroneously identified joint inventors to a different, but actual, sole inventor. (Note that 35 U.S.C. 120 and 37 CFR 1.78 require an overlap of inventorship, hence, refiling, rather than requesting under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48 to change inventorship where the change would not result in an inventorship overlap may result in the loss of a benefit claim.)

A.    Statement of Lack of Deceptive Intention

Where a similar inventorship error has occurred in more than one application for which correction is requested wherein petitioner seeks to rely on identical statements, only one original set need be supplied if copies are submitted in all other applications with a reference to the application containing the originals (original oaths or declarations under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 and written consent of assignees along with separate processing fees must be filed in each application).

The statement required from each inventor being added or deleted may simply state that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intention. The statement need not be a verified statement (see MPEP § 410).

Note that if a request to correct inventorship filed before September 16, 2012 is deficient, any new request to correct the inventorship must comply with 37 CFR 1.48 as revised effective September 16, 2012. Requests under 37 CFR 1.48 filed on or after September 16, 2012 do not require a "lack of deceptive intention" statement.

B.    Oath or Declaration

An oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 by each actual inventor must be presented. While each inventor need not execute the same oath or declaration, each oath or declaration executed by an inventor must contain a complete listing of all inventors so as to clearly indicate what each inventor believes to be the appropriate inventive entity. Where individual declarations are executed, they must be submitted as individual declarations rather than combined into one declaration. For example, where the inventive entity is A and B, a declaration may not be executed only by A naming only A as the inventor and a different declaration may not be executed only by B naming only B as the inventor, which two declarations are then combined into one declaration with a first page of boiler plate, a second page with A’s signature, and a second page with B’s signature (so that it appears that the declaration was executed with the entire inventive entity appearing in the declaration when it did not).

Conflicting oaths or declarations filed: If the first executed oaths or declarations that are submitted name different inventive entities (e.g., one declaration names A, B, and C as inventors and a second declaration names D as the inventor) and are filed on the same day, the application will be considered to name the inventors named in both declarations (A, B, C, and D) and a new oath or declaration in compliance with pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 including the entire inventive entity will be required. Where an application is filed with an executed declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 naming an inventive entity that is in conflict with another paper filed in the application, such as the transmittal letter, the executed declaration will govern. However, where an executed declaration is never submitted and the application papers are in conflict as to the inventorship, each party identified as an inventor on filing will be considered to have been named as part of the inventive entity. See pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.41(a)(1).

Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.47 is available in applications filed prior to September 16, 2012, to meet the requirement for an oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 as for example where A, B, and C were originally named as inventors and D who refuses to cooperate is to be later added as an inventor. The oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 of inventor D may be supplied pursuant to pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.47(a), but note that the required pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a)(2) statement must still be supplied by inventor D (an unlikely event in view of the inability to obtain the executed oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 ), or waiver thereof petitioned under 37 CFR 1.183. Alternatively, where D is to be added as an inventor (where inventors A, B, and C have previously executed the application under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 ) and it is original inventor A who refuses to cooperate, the statement under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a)(2) is only required to be signed by inventor D. Originally named inventor A is merely required to reexecute an oath or declaration in compliance with pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63. Petitions under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.47 are only applicable to an original oath or declaration and are not applicable to the reexecution of another oath or declaration by A. In such circumstances, a petition under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.183 should be considered requesting waiver of the requirement of pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.64 that each of the actual inventors, i.e., inventor A, execute the oath or declaration, particularly where assignee consent is given to the requested correction. Absent assignee consent, the petition under 37 CFR 1.183 requesting waiver of the reexecution of the oath or declaration will be evaluated as to whether the nonsigning inventor was actually given the opportunity to reexecute the oath or declaration, or whether the nonsigning inventor could not be reached.

Applications filed with a petition under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.47 and a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) will be forwarded to the Office of Petitions, after mailing the filing receipt by the Office of Patent Application Processing (OPAP), for consideration of the petition and the request. In those instances wherein a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) and a petition under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.47 have both been filed in an application, the Office of Petitions may first issue a decision on the request under 37 CFR 1.48(a) so as to determine the appropriate oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 required for the petition under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.47.

The oath or declaration submitted subsequent to the filing date (37 CFR 1.53(f) ) of an application filed under 37 CFR 1.53(b) must clearly identify the previously filed specification it is intended to execute. See MPEP § 601.01(a) and § 6.2.

C.    Fee

Where waiver under 37 CFR 1.183 is requested in relation to a requirement under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a), a processing fee under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) and a petition fee under 37 CFR 1.183 are required. Similarly, where in addition to a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48, two petitions under 37 CFR 1.183 are presented, e.g., one requesting waiver of a requirement under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48 and the other requesting waiver of the reexecution of an oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.64, three fees are required (one for the request filed under 37 CFR 1.48 and two for the two petitions filed under 37 CFR 1.183 ).

Where a similar error has occurred in more than one application a separate processing fee must be submitted in each application in which correction is requested.

If the processing fee has not been submitted or authorized the request will be dismissed.

D.    Written Consent of Assignee

The written consent of every existing assignee of the original named inventors must be submitted. See pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a)(5). Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) does not limit assignees to those who are recorded in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office records. The Office employee deciding the request should check the file record for any indication of the existence of an assignee (e.g., a small entity assertion from an assignee).

Where no assignee exists, requester should affirmatively state that fact. If the file record, including the request, is silent as to the existence of an assignee it will be presumed that no assignee exists. Such presumption should be set forth in the decision to alert requesters to the requirement.

The individual signing on behalf of the assignee giving its consent to the requested inventorship correction, should specifically state that he or she has the authority to act on behalf of the assignee. In the absence of such a statement, the consent will be accepted if it is signed by an appropriate official of the assignee (e.g., president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, or derivative thereof) if the official’s title has been made of record. A general statement of authority to act for the assignee, or on the specific matter of consent, or the appropriate title of the party signing on behalf of the assignee should be made of record in the consent. However, if it appears in another paper of record, e.g., small entity assertion, it is also acceptable. Further, the assignee must establish its ownership of the application in accordance with pre-AIA 37 CFR 3.73. MPEP § 324.

E.    Continuing Applications

35 U.S.C. 120 permits a continuing application to claim the benefit of the filing date of a copending, previously filed, parent application provided there is inventorship overlap between the continuing application and the parent application. If the inventive entity of a continuing application includes an inventor named in the parent application, the inventorship overlap required by 35 U.S.C. 120 is met.

Example

The parent application names inventors A and B and claims inventions 1 and 2. Inventor A contributes only to invention 1 and inventor B contributes only to invention 2. A restriction requirement is made and invention 1 was elected. Upon allowance of claims directed to invention 1 and cancellation of claims directed to invention 2, a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(b) was filed requesting deletion of inventor B. The request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(b) was granted by the primary examiner. Prior to the issuance of the parent application, a divisional application claiming benefit under 35 U.S.C. 120 to the parent application, is filed claiming only invention 2 and naming only inventor B. The inventorship overlap required by 35 U.S.C. 120 is met in this instance even though at the time of filing of the divisional application, the inventorship overlap was lost as a result of the deletion of an inventor in the parent application. The overlap of inventorship need not be present on the date the continuing application is filed nor present when the parent application issues or becomes abandoned.

On filing a continuing application under 37 CFR 1.53(b) it should not be assumed that an error in inventorship made in a parent application was in fact corrected therein in response to a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) unless a decision from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to that effect was received by the requester. A continuing application naming the additional inventor can be filed under 35 U.S.C. 111(a) and 37 CFR 1.53(b) with a newly executed oath or declaration by the new inventive entity along with a request for benefit under 35 U.S.C. 120 without the need for a decision on the request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48 filed in the parent application.

Should an error in inventorship in a parent application be discovered, whether it is the need to add and/or to delete inventors, when preparing to file a continuing application, the continuing application may be filed under 37 CFR 1.53(b) with the correct inventive entity without the need for a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) in the parent or continuing application provided the parent application is to be abandoned on filing of the continuing application. In filing a continuation or divisional application under 37 CFR 1.53(b), a copy of an oath or declaration from the prior application can only be used where inventors are to be deleted (37 CFR 1.53(b)(1) and pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63(d)(1)(ii) ), but not where inventors are to be added. Where inventors are to be added, a newly executed oath or declaration must be submitted. See pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63(d)(5).

In a continued prosecution application (CPA) filed under 37 CFR 1.53(d), a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) or (c) to add an inventor to a parent application that was not acted on (e.g., filed after final rejection) will be automatically considered in the CPA. Until the request is granted, the inventorship remains the same as the prior application. Note, however, that effective July 14, 2003, CPA practice has been eliminated as to utility and plant applications. If the application is a design application, after discovery of an inventorship error, the application can also be refiled under 37 CFR 1.53(d)(4) as a CPA where inventors are only to be deleted.

In filing a continuing application to correct the inventorship, it is important to recognize that 37 CFR 1.78 requires for purposes of claiming the benefit of the prior application that the prior application must have had the filing fee paid within the period set forth in 37 CFR 1.53(f) so as to establish copendency. The basic filing fee must be paid within the pendency of a nonprovisional application in order to permit benefit of the application to be claimed under 35 U.S.C. 120, 121, or 365(c) in a subsequent nonprovisional or international application.

Should a continuation or divisional application be filed under 37 CFR 1.53(b) (1) where a copy of the oath or declaration from the prior application is utilized (or under 37 CFR 1.53(d) as a CPA if the prior application is a design application) purporting to add an inventor, the inventorship of the prior application will be retained in the continuing application as addition of an inventor is not permitted in these instances. The absence of a request to correct the inventorship submitted with the continuing application will not affect the filing date of the continuing application. However, the retained inventorship must then be corrected by the filing of a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(a) in the continuation or divisional application stating that the error in failing to name the additional inventor in the prior application was without deceptive intention. Where an inventor is to be added, it is recommended that a continuation or divisional application be filed under 37 CFR 1.53(b) with a newly executed oath or declaration and not be filed with a copy of the oath or declaration from the prior application. This procedure eliminates the need for a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48.

An inventorship error discovered while prosecuting a continuing application that occurred in both an abandoned parent application and the continuing application can be corrected in both applications by filing a single request in the continuing application (e.g., A + B named in parent, B + C named in continuing application, actual inventorship is C + D thereby eliminating inventorship overlap and resulting loss of benefit claim under 35 U.S.C. 120 if the error is not corrected in abandoned parent application as well as in continuation application). Absent such loss of inventorship overlap, correction need not be made in the abandoned application.

When entering the national stage under 35 U.S.C. 371, correction of inventorship is via the provisions of pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.497(d). See MPEP § 1893.01(e).

¶ 2.13    Correction of Inventorship Under 37 CFR 1.48(a), Insufficient

The request to correct the inventorship of this nonprovisional application under 37 CFR 1.48(a) is deficient because:

Examiner Note:

1. This form paragraph should only be used in response to requests to correct an error in the naming of the prior inventors in nonprovisional applications. If the request is merely to delete an inventor because claims were canceled or amended such that the deleted inventor is no longer an actual inventor of any claim in the application, use form paragraph 2.13.01 instead of this form paragraph.

Potential rejections
A rejection under pre-AIA 35 U.S.C. 102(f) or (g) must be considered if the request is denied.
The grant or denial of the request may result in the loss of inventorship overlap between a parent application and a continuing application and an inability to claim benefit in the continuing application of the parent application’s filing date under 35 U.S.C. 120. Intervening references must then be considered.

2. A primary examiner may not decide the request if the request is also accompanied by a petition under 37 CFR 1.183 requesting waiver of one of the requirements explicitly set forth in 37 CFR 1.48(a) (typically a refusal of one of the inventors to be added or deleted to execute the required statement of facts) – the request for correction of inventorship and request for waiver of the rules should be forwarded to the Office of Petitions.

3. One or more of form paragraphs 2.13a - 2.13e should follow this form paragraph, as applicable.

4. Where it appears that: 1) the inventor(s) to be added or deleted may be hostile and will not execute a required statement of facts; and 2) the actual inventorship would overlap the original inventorship (37 CFR 1.78 ), follow this form paragraph with form paragraph 2.13f.

5. Requests under 37 CFR 1.41 to change inventorship where an executed oath or declaration has not been filed are to be acted upon by OPAP.

6. Where there is a correction in a person’s name, e.g., due to misspelling, or marriage, a request under 37 CFR 1.48 is inappropriate. SeeMPEP § 602.08(b) for name changes.

7. An initial executed oath or declaration under 37 CFR 1.63 may change the inventorship as originally set forth when the application is filed without an executed oath or declaration without request for correction of inventorship (37 CFR 1.48(f) ).

8. This form paragraph should only be used if the request to correct inventorship was filed before September 16, 2012. Requests under 37 CFR 1.48 filed on or after September 16, 2012, are handled by the Office of Patent Application Processing.

¶ 2.13a    Statement of Facts Problem (for Use Following FP 2.13, If Applicable)

The statement of facts by an inventor or inventors to be added or deleted does not explicitly state that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intent on his or her part or cannot be construed to so state.

¶ 2.13b    No New Oath or Declaration (for Use Following FP 2.13 or 2.13.02, If Applicable)

An oath or declaration by each actual inventor or inventors listing the entire inventive entity has not been submitted.

¶ 2.13c    Required Fee Not Submitted (for Use Following FP 2.13, 2.13.01 or 2.13.02, If Applicable)

It lacks the required fee under 37 CFR 1.17(i).

¶ 2.13d    Written Consent Missing (for Use Following FP 2.13 or 2.13.02, If Applicable)

It lacks the written consent of any assignee of one of the originally named inventors.

¶ 2.13e    37 CFR 3.73(b) Submission (for Use Following FP 2.13 or 2.13.02, If Applicable)

A 37 CFR 3.73(b) submission has not been received to support action by the assignee.

¶ 2.13f    Hostile Inventor(s)/Inventorship Overlap (for Use Following FP 2.13, If Applicable)

As it appears that a party required by 37 CFR 1.48(a)(2) to submit a statement of facts may not be willing to submit such statement, applicant should consider either: a) submission of a petition under 37 CFR 1.183 to waive that requirement if the original named inventor(s) has assigned the entire right and interest to an assignee who has given its consent to the requested inventorship correction, MPEP § 602.01(c)(3), subsection III.A., or b) refiling the application (where addition is needed) under 37 CFR 1.53(b) with a new oath or declaration and any necessary petition under 37 CFR 1.47, or where only deletion is needed, either under 37 CFR 1.53(b) utilizing a copy of a prior oath or declaration under 37 CFR 1.63(d)(1)(iv), or under 37 CFR 1.53(d) ) (design applications only), thereby eliminating the need for a 37 CFR 1.48 request.

¶ 2.13.01    Correction of Inventorship Under 37 CFR 1.48(b), Insufficient

The request for the deletion of an inventor in this nonprovisional application under 37 CFR 1.48(b) is deficient because:

Examiner Note:

1. This form paragraph should only be used when the inventorship was previously correct when originally executed but an inventor is being deleted because claims have been amended or canceled such that he or she is no longer an inventor of any remaining claim in the non-provisional application. If the inventorship is being corrected because of an error in naming the correct inventors, use form paragraph 2.13 instead of this form paragraph.

2. Follow this form paragraph with one or both of form paragraphs 2.13c and 2.13g.

3. See note 1 of form paragraph 2.13, Potential rejections.

¶ 2.13g    Statement Under 37 CFR 1.48(b)(2) Problem (for Use Following FP 2.13.01, If Applicable)

The request was not accompanied by the statement required under 37 CFR 1.48(b)(2).

¶ 2.13.02    Correction of Inventorship Under 37 CFR 1.48(c), Insufficient

The request to correct the inventorship in this nonprovisional application under 37 CFR 1.48(c) requesting addition of an inventor(s) is deficient because:

Examiner Note:

1. This form paragraph should only be used when the inventorship was previously correct when the application was originally executed, but the inventorship now needs to be changed due to subsequent addition of subject matter from the specification to the claims, which subject matter was contributed by a party not originally named as an inventor.

2. See note 2 of form paragraph 2.13.

3. Follow this form paragraph with any of form paragraphs 2.13b-2.13e or 2.13h.

4. See note 1 of form paragraph 2.13, Potential rejections.

5. See notes 4-7 of form paragraph 2.13.

¶ 2.13h    Statement of Facts, Added Inventor (for Use Following FP 2.13.02, If Applicable)

The statement of facts by the inventor(s) to be added does not explicitly state that the amendment of the inventorship is necessitated by amendment of the claims and that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intent on the part of the inventor(s) to be added, or cannot be construed to so state.

¶ 2.14.01    Correction of Inventorship Under 37 CFR 1.48(b) Filed Before Sept. 16, 2012, Sufficient

In view of the request to correct inventorship under 37 CFR 1.48(b) and accompanying papers filed before September 16, 2012, the inventorship of this nonprovisional application has been changed by the deletion of [1].

The application will be forwarded to the Office of Patent Application Processing (OPAP) for issuance of a corrected filing receipt, and correction of Office records to reflect the inventorship as corrected.

Examiner Note:

1. This form paragraph is to be used only for 37 CFR 1.48(b) corrections.

2. In bracket 1, insert the names of the deleted inventor(s).

3. This form paragraph should only be used if the request to correct inventorship was filed before September 16, 2012. Requests under 37 CFR 1.48 filed on or after September 16, 2012, are handled by the Office of Patent Application Processing.

IV.    Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(b)

37 C.F.R. 1.48 (pre-AIA) Correction of inventorship in a patent application, other than a reissue application, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. 116.

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  • (b) Nonprovisional application—fewer inventors due to amendment or cancellation of claims. If the correct inventors are named in a nonprovisional application, and the prosecution of the nonprovisional application results in the amendment or cancellation of claims so that fewer than all of the currently named inventors are the actual inventors of the invention being claimed in the nonprovisional application, an amendment must be filed requesting deletion of the name or names of the person or persons who are not inventors of the invention being claimed. Amendment of the inventorship requires:
    • (1) A request, signed by a party set forth in § 1.33(b), to correct the inventorship that identifies the named inventor or inventors being deleted and acknowledges that the inventor's invention is no longer being claimed in the nonprovisional application; and
    • (2) The processing fee set forth in § 1.17(i).

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Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(b) provides for deleting the names of persons originally properly included as inventors, but whose invention is no longer being claimed in a nonprovisional application. Such a situation would arise where claims have been amended or deleted during prosecution because they are unpatentable or as a result of a requirement for restriction of the application to one invention, or for other reasons. A request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(b) to delete an inventor would be appropriate prior to an action by the TC where it is decided not to pursue particular aspects of an invention attributable to some of the original named inventors.

Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(b) requires that the amendment be accompanied by: (1) a request including a statement identifying each named inventor who is being deleted and acknowledging that the inventor’s invention is no longer being claimed in the application; and (2) a fee under 37 CFR 1.17(i). The statement may be signed by applicant’s registered attorney or agent who then takes full responsibility for ensuring that the inventor is not being improperly deleted from the application. Written consent of any assignee is not required for requests filed under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(b).

V.    Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(c)

37 C.F.R. 1.48 (pre-AIA) Correction of inventorship in a patent application, other than a reissue application, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. 116.

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  • (c) Nonprovisional application—inventors added for claims to previously unclaimed subject matter. If a nonprovisional application discloses unclaimed subject matter by an inventor or inventors not named in the application, the application may be amended to add claims to the subject matter and name the correct inventors for the application. Amendment of the inventorship requires:
    • (1) A request to correct the inventorship that sets forth the desired inventorship change;
    • (2) A statement from each person being added as an inventor that the addition is necessitated by amendment of the claims and that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intention on his or her part;
    • (3) An oath or declaration by the actual inventors as required by § 1.63 or as permitted by §§ 1.42, 1.43, or § 1.47;
    • (4) The processing fee set forth in § 1.17(i); and
    • (5) If an assignment has been executed by any of the original named inventors, the written consent of the assignee (see § 3.73(b) of this chapter).

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Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(c) provides for the situation where a nonprovisional application discloses unclaimed subject matter by an inventor or inventors not named in the application when an executed declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 was first filed. In such a situation, the nonprovisional application may be amended pursuant to pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(c) to add claims directed to the originally unclaimed but disclosed subject matter and also to name the correct inventors for the application based on the newly added claims. Any claims added to the application must be supported by the disclosure as filed and cannot add new matter.

Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(c) requires that the amendment must be accompanied by: (1) a request to correct the inventorship that sets forth the desired inventorship change; (2) a statement from each person being added as an inventor that the amendment is necessitated by an amendment to the claims and that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intention on his or her part; (3) an oath or declaration by each actual inventor; (4) the fee under 37 CFR 1.17(i); and (5) the written consent of any assignee of the original named inventors.

VI.    Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(d)

37 C.F.R. 1.48 (pre-AIA) Correction of inventorship in a patent application, other than a reissue application, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. 116.

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  • (d) Provisional application—adding omitted inventors. If the name or names of an inventor or inventors were omitted in a provisional application through error without any deceptive intention on the part of the omitted inventor or inventors, the provisional application may be amended to add the name or names of the omitted inventor or inventors. Amendment of the inventorship requires:
    • (1) A request, signed by a party set forth in § 1.33(b), to correct the inventorship that identifies the inventor or inventors being added and states that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intention on the part of the omitted inventor or inventors; and
    • (2) The processing fee set forth in § 1.17(q).

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Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(d) provides a procedure for adding the name of an inventor in a provisional application, where the name was originally omitted without deceptive intent.

Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(d) requires that the amendment be accompanied by: (1) a request to correct the inventorship that sets forth the desired inventorship change; (2) a statement that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intention on the part of the omitted inventor or inventors; and (3) the fee set forth in 37 CFR 1.17(q). The statement of lack of deceptive intent may be included in the request and may be signed by a registered attorney or agent. A statement of lack of deceptive intent is not required from any of the original or to be added inventors.

See also discussion below regarding requests filed under 37 CFR 1.48(e).

VII.    Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(e)

37 C.F.R. 1.48 (pre-AIA) Correction of inventorship in a patent application, other than a reissue application, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. 116.

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  • (e) Provisional application—deleting the name or names of the inventor or inventors. If a person or persons were named as an inventor or inventors in a provisional application through error without any deceptive intention on the part of such person or persons, an amendment may be filed in the provisional application deleting the name or names of the person or persons who were erroneously named. Amendment of the inventorship requires:
    • (1) A request to correct the inventorship that sets forth the desired inventorship change;
    • (2) A statement by the person or persons whose name or names are being deleted that the inventorship error occurred without deceptive intention on the part of such person or persons;
    • (3) The processing fee set forth in § 1.17(q); and
    • (4) If an assignment has been executed by any of the original named inventors, the written consent of the assignee (see § 3.73(b) of this chapter).

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Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(e) provides a procedure for deleting the name of a person who was erroneously named as an inventor in a provisional application.

Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(e) requires that the amendment be accompanied by: (1) a request to correct the inventorship that sets forth the desired inventorship change; (2) a statement of lack of deceptive intent by the person whose name is being deleted establishing that the error occurred without deceptive intention on his or her part; (3) the fee set forth in 37 CFR 1.17(q); and (4) the written consent of any assignee.

Under 35 U.S.C. 119(e), a later filed nonprovisional application under 35 U.S.C. 111(a) that is filed within twelve months of an earlier provisional application may claim benefits based on the earlier filed provisional application so long as both applications have at least one inventor in common. An error in not naming or in naming a person as an inventor in a provisional application would not require correction under either pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(d) (to add an inventor) or pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(e) (to delete an inventor) in the provisional application so long as the nonprovisional application naming the correct inventorship would contain an overlap of at least one inventor with the provisional application. The existence of inventorship overlap would prevent the original inventorship error from having any effect upon the ability of the provisional application to serve as a basis for a benefit claim under 35 U.S.C. 119(e) with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. If, however, applicant chooses to correct the inventive entity of a provisional application, for example, to permit the provisional application to serve as the basis of a priority claim in a foreign country, pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(d) and (e) set forth the procedures for adding one or more actual inventors and for deleting one or more erroneously named inventors respectively. In the situation where an inventor was not named in a provisional application and an inventor was also erroneously named in the same provisional application and correction is desired, a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(d) and a request under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(e) would be required. Where an inventorship error in a provisional application is desired to be corrected after expiration of twelve months from the filing date of the provisional application, a request under 37 CFR 1.48(d) and/or 37 CFR 1.48(e) may still be filed with OPAP, which handles requests under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(d) and (e), to correct the inventorship in provisional applications.

VIII.    Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(f)

37 C.F.R. 1.48 (pre-AIA) Correction of inventorship in a patent application, other than a reissue application, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. 116.

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  • (f)
    • (1) Nonprovisional application—filing executed oath/declaration corrects inventorship. If the correct inventor or inventors are not named on filing a nonprovisional application under § 1.53(b) without an executed oath or declaration under § 1.63 by any of the inventors, the first submission of an executed oath or declaration under § 1.63 by any of the inventors during the pendency of the application will act to correct the earlier identification of inventorship. See §§ 1.41(a)(4) and 1.497(d) and (f) for submission of an executed oath or declaration to enter the national stage under 35 U.S.C. 371 naming an inventive entity different from the inventive entity set forth in the international stage.
    • (2) Provisional application filing cover sheet corrects inventorship. If the correct inventor or inventors are not named on filing a provisional application without a cover sheet under § 1.51(c)(1), the later submission of a cover sheet under § 1.51(c)(1) during the pendency of the application will act to correct the earlier identification of inventorship.

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Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(f)(1) and (f)(2) will act to automatically correct an earlier identification of inventorship in a nonprovisional application by the filing of an initial executed oath or declaration and in a provisional application by the filing of an initial cover sheet. A request and fee is not required for the inventorship correction to occur.

The provision in pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(f)(1) for changing the inventorship only applies if an executed oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 has not been submitted by any of the inventors. In this situation, the submission of an executed oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 by any of the inventors is sufficient to correct an earlier identification of inventorship. A first-filed oath or declaration under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.63 executed by less than all of the inventors initially identified will, under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(f)(1), determine the inventorship in the application. Any subsequent oath or declaration filed by a different inventive entity will not be effective under pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(f)(1) to correct the inventorship that was specified in the first-filed oath or declaration.

Pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.48(f)(1) is not applicable for national stage applications filed under 35 U.S.C. 371 where the inventorship has been erroneously named in the international application. Accordingly, if the inventorship set forth in the oath or declaration filed in the national stage application differs from the inventorship specified in the international application, the requirements of pre-AIA 37 CFR 1.497(d) must be satisfied. See MPEP § 1893.01(e).