United States Code/Title 35/Chapter 31/Section 317

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Section 317. Inter partes reexamination prohibited

(a) Order for Reexamination.—Notwithstanding any provision of this chapter, once an order for inter partes reexamination of a patent has been issued under section 313, neither the third-party requester nor its privies,[1] may file a subsequent request for inter partes reexamination of the patent until an inter partes reexamination certificate is issued and published under section 316, unless authorized by the Director.

(b) Final Decision.—Once a final decision has been entered against a party in a civil action arising in whole or in part under section 1338 of title 28,[1] that the party has not sustained its burden of proving the invalidity of any patent claim in suit or if a final decision in an inter partes reexamination proceeding instituted by a third-party requester is favorable to the patentability of any original or proposed amended or new claim of the patent, then neither that party nor its privies may thereafter request an inter partes reexamination of any such patent claim on the basis of issues which that party or its privies raised or could have raised in such civil action or inter partes reexamination proceeding, and an inter partes reexamination requested by that party or its privies on the basis of such issues may not thereafter be maintained by the Office, notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter. This subsection does not prevent the assertion of invalidity based on newly discovered prior art unavailable to the third-party requester and the Patent and Trademark Office at the time of the inter partes reexamination proceedings.


(Added Pub. L. 106-113, div. B, Sec. 1000(a)(9) [title IV, Sec. 4604(a)], Nov. 29, 1999, 113 Stat. 1536, 1501A-570; amended Pub. L. 107-273, div. C, title III, Sec. 13202(a)(5), (c)(1), Nov. 2, 2002, 116 Stat. 1901, 1902.)



Pub. L. 107-273, Sec. 13202(c)(1), made technical correction to directory language of Pub. L. 106-113, which enacted this section.

Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 107-273, Sec. 13202(a)(5)(A), substituted “third-party requester nor its privies” for “patent owner nor the third-party requester, if any, nor privies of either”.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 107-273, Sec. 13202(a)(5)(B), struck out “United States Code,” after “title 28,”.


  1. 1.0 1.1 So in original. The comma probably should not appear.