Rumors via Hal Wegner:
The continuation rules continue to be the corridor talk of the Boston AIPLA meeting which continues through tomorrow. One respected source has stated to have received information from inside the PTO that the continuation rules package is extremely thick (undoubtedly to respond to the numerous issues raised in testimony) and that the following are essential elements of the rulemaking package:
The “2+1” Limit on Continuations/RCE’s: “2+1”: First, a patent applicant is limited to one (1) RCE and (2) continuing applications. The rules will be applied retroactively for cases that have not yet received a first action on the merits.
“3+1 Transition Rule”: For cases which do have a first action by the time of the new rules, a “bonus” continuation will be allowed, i.e., a total of one (1) RCE and three (3) continuations.
The “25/5” Claim Limits: Twenty-five (25) total claims, including up to five (5) independent claims.