How to Search the MPEP

How To Search

  • Use quotes for an exact phrase match (e.g., subject matter eligibility will find all sections that contain the exact phrase).
  • Leave out quotes for a broad search to find sections where the searched word(s) are mentioned in any order.
  • To find relevant results faster, try combining  phrases (in quotes) and keywords (without quotes)


Search Examples

  • petition to make special (with quotes) will find all sections that has the exact phrase — in the exact order.
  • A particular section (or subsection) can be reached by typing the section number or title, e.g., 2143.01 or  transitional phrases
  • restrictions on uspto employees (without quotes) will perform  a broad search and display sections that have the searched words in any order (Note: this may cause non-relevant results to be displayed as well).
  • improper final rejection (combination of a phrase–final rejection–and  a keyword ‘improper’) can be used to determine all sections related to a final rejection discussing when it may be improper for an examiner to issue one.
  • Step 2A prong one to find subject matter eligibility analysis discussing prong one of step 2A. Note: Step 2A prong one would ignore the sections that do not contain the exact phrase, so may not be desirable if variants of the phrase.

Iphone Users

  •  iPhone uses non-standard quotes. You will need to disable “smart punctuation” from System >General > Keyboards to perform an exact phrase search using quotes.