While prosecuting patent applications in the US under the US Patent law, it is the duty of the inventor(s), applicant(s), or attorney(s)/agent(s) representing the applicant to divulge, in good faith, all the known prior art references that are known or discovered during the course of prosecution up to the date of patent issuance (37 C.F.R §1.97), before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in a specified format, known as the Information Disclosure Statement (IDS). The said prior-art references include patent (published applications, issued patents, etc.) and/or non-patent references (all the scientific articles that have appeared in journals, presentations, paper submissions, poster presentations, advertisements, product brochures, doctoral thesis, standards as prescribed, publications, magazines, books, or any other information that there might be) that are material to patentability of the invention (37 C.F.R. §1.56) claimed through the respective application.
USPTO has specified the formats for filing the IDS, which include two parts i.e.
The PDF copies submitted should meet the criteria such as specific size and clarity for uploading the same on the USPTO website. If the list includes the non-Latin patent reference, then a translation of the same without deviating from the original meaning of the original reference (to the best of the knowledge), needs to be submitted. In this case, the original document and the translated version should be combined and submitted as a single reference.
The US Patent law necessitates the disclosure of the material prior-art references, failure of which can result in the unenforceability of the patent for “inequitable conduct” i.e. deliberate withholding or concealing of the known information, rendering the entire patent useless.
In IIPRD, IDS Management is done by providing complete support in advising, preparing, and/or managing the Information Disclosure Statement (IDS) by meeting the latest guidelines and deadlines as established by the USPTO.