USPTO to Establish TC Ombudsman Positions.
Per this interview at IPWatchdog with Peggy Focarino, Acting Commissioner for Patents at the USPTO, the Office may be implementing a Technology Center (TC) -level “Ombudsman” position as part of an overall effort to improve the patent application process. Ms. Focarino stated that the TC Ombudsman would be available as a resource for an Applicant on application-specific issues, for purpose of facilitating the resolution of the issues when they arise. She envisions the role to be a facilitator of sorts for resolving administrative issues quickly, and for allowing an application to be quickly placed back on track. The resource would also be independent of an Examiner’s chain of command, so as to be a neutral party relative to the Applicant and the Examiner.
JW Note: As a practitioner, this would be a welcomed addition to the USPTO internal hierarchy, and could certainly be a useful resource in relation to the occasional administrative issue.