On December 15th, 2014, the USPTO released its much anticipated revised subject matter eligibility examination guidance to assist patent examiners to evaluate inventions that may be related to any one of the three judicial exceptions to subject matter eligibility under 35 U.S.C. § 101 – law of nature, natural phenomena, and/or an abstract idea. 2014 Interim Guidance on Patent Subject Matter Eligibility (“Interim Guidance“). The Interim Guidance is to be published in the Federal Register on December 16th, 2014, and is to effective on that date. It is to be applied to all pending and newly filed applications.
This Interim Guidance, unlike the prior guidance of March 2014 (see my prior posts of March 5th and March 7th, 2014), encourages an evaluation of the claim as a whole. In addition, it does not consider a claim that is directed to a combination of natural products as per se ineligible because the individual elements separately are natural products. Continue reading this entry