The Patent Examination Interview Service promotes direct communication between CIPO's patent examiners and patent agents or other authorized person(s) by allowing for the prosecution of patent applications by telephone. The Service encourages patent examiners to contact the appointed patent agent or other authorized person(s) by phone in situations where advancing prosecution is likely, such as when there are only a few minor defects remaining in an application. For clarification on which person(s) are authorized to have an interview with the patent examiner, please refer to chapter 12.06 of the Manual of Patent Office Practice (MOPOP).
The Service offers the appointed patent agent or other authorized person the opportunity to discuss the application directly with the examiner, obtain suggestions or advice from the examiner as to how an identified defect may be overcome, and correct any identified defects through submission of a voluntary amendment within a predetermined timeframe. Any voluntary amendments submitted as a result of a phone interview are reviewed by the examiner expeditiously and the application approved for allowance, if the application complies with the Patent Act and Rules.
Although the Service offers the appointed patent agent or other authorized person the opportunity to reduce the time to allowance by correcting any identified defects through submission of a voluntary amendment, the option of corresponding with the examiner via the traditional route of written office action and formal response is always available.
The Patent Examination Interview Service aims to foster innovation in Canada by advancing prosecution leading to allowance, reducing costs for the applicant, pendency and risk of impasse, and improving communication between examiners and agents or applicants. The Service will help CIPO to align its practices with those of other intellectual property offices worldwide and delivers on CIPO's promise to provide Canadians with timely and quality IP rights.