CHAPTER 2

THE ROLE OF THE PATENT PROFESSIONAL

2.1      INTRODUCTION

In today’s highly competitive marketplace, the PP is instrumental in developing a cost-effective patent prosecution team that produces a high quality work product under the RPP’s supervision.  The legal and time-sensitive nature of patent prosecution requires that the PP be highly skilled and function well in a team environment, with one or more RPPs at its head.  In view of the breadth of work and the demands of patent prosecution, the PP may assume a multi-faceted role to help with his/her RPP’s administrative or clerical functions.

In general, the role of the PP is to assist the RPP in administrative or clerical functions relating to patent prosecution and maintaining existing patents.  The purpose of this section and the following subsections is to give the novice PP an idea of the responsibilities typically associated with the PP.  Various responsibilities may be assigned based on the preferences of the RPP as well as the experience and level of competence of the PP.  Accordingly, it should be noted that the following discussion is meant to be representative, not exclusive, of the duties that may be assigned to the PP.

In addition to those duties specifically assigned to the PP, it is always important that the PP communicate effectively with the RPP.  The PP should reach out to the RPP to establish a system of communication as well as responsibilities so that they can be both comfortable with each other.  Moreover, it is imperative that the PP communicate with the RPP so that there is a mutual understanding of any docket deadlines and work product style and content.