Precedential Opinion Panel (POP) Issues Decision in Proppant Express Investments v. Oren Technologies

The Precedential Opinion Panel (POP) yesterday concluded that 35 U.S.C. 315(c) provides discretion to allow a petitioner to be joined to a proceeding in which it is already a party and provides discretion to allow joinder of new issues into an existing proceeding. The POP further concluded that the existence of a time bar under 35 U.S.C. 315(b) is one of several factors that may be considered when exercising discretion under 315(c). In order to balance various considerations, including those raised by other statutes such as the time bar of 315(b), the Board will exercise this discretion only in limited circumstances namely, where fairness requires it and to avoid undue prejudice to a party.

For more information, please see the PTAB’s Precedential and Informative Decisions page on the USPTO’s website.