Rowan Analytics Insights
Patent Prosecution Analytics Benchmarking Report – April 2022

Rejection Rates for Top Filing Law Firms in Chemical Sector

This month, we finalize our investigation of the law firms filing the most patent applications at the USPTO by Technology Center, and the 112 rejection rates that their Office actions receive. Our last area is chemical – Technology Center 1700. Again we identify the top firms in terms of volumes of issued patents and examine their 112 rejection rates compared to national averages.

In Tech Center 1700, the top filing firm is Oblon, McClelland, Maier & Neustadt, with 1,175 applications in 2020. Following them is Sughrue Mion at 705, and then a drop to 589 applications by Birch, Stewart, Kolasch & Birch. How did these three compare with the national average in terms of 112 rejections? For the last year, Rowan has been exploring whether higher volumes of applications, whether analyzed by a company or by a law firm, leads to a lower rate of 112 rejections.

We compared the percentage of 112 rejections in Office actions for each of these firms against the national average at the USPTO.

The charts shows that all three are lower than the national average. Oblon Mcclelland, with the highest volume, did the best, at 35% compared to a national average of 44%. Sughrue Mion and Birch Stewart also beat the average, at 39% and 37% respectively. These results do support the idea that a higher volume of applications leads to a lower percentage of 112 rejections, a result we also saw in the 2400 and 2600 Technology Centers. As we have asked before, is this due to their deployment of technology to assist in error prevention? Or do they utilize different internal workflows that place an increased emphasis on catching these issues prior to filing?

Note: Harrity Patent Analytics has released their top legal firms of 2021, with several changes in position. In order to remain consistent with our past analysis, we have used their top legal firms of 2020 for this article. In a future edition we will examine differences between 2020 and 2021.

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Sources: USPTO, Rowan analysis

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