Although the number of reexamination requests which must be transferred should be very small, the following procedures have been established for an expeditious resolution of any such problems.
A reexamination request is normally assigned to a Central Reexamination Unit (CRU) art unit which examines the technology (Chemical, Electrical, Mechanical, etc.) in which the patent to be reexamined is currently classified as an original. If the CRU Supervisory Patent Reexamination Specialist (SPRS) (to whose art unit the reexamination has been assigned) believes that the reexamination should be assigned to another art unit, he or she must obtain the consent of the CRU SPRS of the art unit to which a transfer is desired. Pursuant to 35 U.S.C. 305, all ex parte reexamination proceedings must be conducted with special dispatch within the Office. This applies to the transfer of reexamination proceedings. Accordingly, the CRU SPRS to whose art unit the reexamination has been assigned should expeditiously make any request for transfer of a reexamination proceeding to the CRU SPRS of the art unit to which a transfer is desired (the “new” art unit). Any conflict which cannot be resolved by the SPRSs will be resolved by the CRU Director.
If the “new” art unit accepts assignment of the reexamination request, the “new” CRU SPRS assigns the request to an examiner in that unit.