In citing court decisions, when it is convenient to do so, the U.S. or Federal Reporter citation should be provided; in the alternative, the USPQ citation should be given.
The citation of decisions which are not available to the public should be avoided.
It is important to recognize that a federal district court decision that has been reversed on appeal cannot be cited as authority.
In citing a decision which is available to the public but which has not been published, the tribunal rendering the decision and complete data identifying the paper should be given. Thus, a decision of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board which has not been published but which is available to the public in the patented file should be cited, as “ Ex parte — — , decision of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, Patent No. — — — , paper No. — — , — — — pages.”
Decisions found only in patented files should be cited only when there is no published decision on the same point.
When a Director’s order, notice or memorandum not yet incorporated into this manual is cited in any official action, the title and date of the order, notice or memorandum should be given. When appropriate other data, such as a specific issue of the Official Gazette may also be given.