Usually I post a holiday-related patent on major holidays (which Halloween is in my house).  But in light of today’s Eastern District of Virginia preliminary injunction hearing regarding whether to allow the PTO’s new continuation rules to take effect tomorrow, November 1, as planned, I thought a post on the continuation rules was more appropriate.  The patent world, and more particularly the patent prosecution world, has been busy analyzing and preparing for the new continuation rules for several months.  For analysis of the new rules check out the Maryland Intellectual Property Law Blog (click here and here) and the 271 Patent Blog (click here).

While most were just probing the rules for loopholes or preparing to comply with them, two also filed suits in the Eastern District of Virginia seeking to enjoin enactment of the new rules — Triantafyllos Tafas v. Dudas, No. 07 C 846 (E.D. Va.) and SmithKline Beecham Corp./GSK v. Dudas, No 07 C 1008.  Click here for Patent Docs’ excellent coverage of the SmithKline/GSK suit.

The two suits were consolidated and a preliminary injunction hearing has been set for today — click here and here to download the briefs at Patently-O.  Numerous entities have taken sides, filing amicus briefs — click here for a list of the briefs and links to some of them at the PLI Patent Practice Center Blog.  And for those of you who cannot wait to read the result here shortly after it comes out and who are not busy with legal work or preparing for tonight’s trick or treating, click here for the PLI Patent Practice Center Blog’s live blogging coverage of the PI hearing.

Update:  Click here for more coverage of the Eastern District of VIrginia cases by the WSJ Law Blog and click here for even more briefing from Patently-O.

Happy Halloween.