INPI adopts new procedures to reduce the backlog, upon relying on search reports issued by other IP offices

INPI has published Resolution 241/19 providing for a streamlined examination of pending patent applications having a search report issued by another IP office, to be executed during the next 2 years. In such cases, Brazilian examiners will not perform additional prior art searches. 

A preliminary office action (code 6.21) will be issued concerning applications filed on or before December 31, 2016, a response being due within 90 days. The applicant will be given an opportunity to amend the application to overcome any relevant prior art and/or submit arguments. Amendments will be required to comply with Brazilian law and regulations, in particular with respect to INPI’s strict interpretation of the law in the sense that during examination claims may only be amended to restrict their scope. Failure to respond will result in the unappealable shelving of the application.

Following submission of amendments/arguments considered suitable by the examiner, the application shall be allowed.

Such preliminary office actions will not be issued in connection with patent applications already being examined or which expedited examination was previously requested, or which are subject to third party observations.

Since the opinion issued by another IP office will be taken into consideration, adapting the claims in Brazil to those already granted by that office will presumably improve the chances of allowance.