A continuation-in-part patent application can be thought of as a part-child of a prior filed “parent” patent application. A continuation-in-part application is sometimes referred to as a CIP application.
A CIP application contains some or all of the subject matter from the prior parent application and some new matter that was not in the prior parent application.
The Manual of Patent Examining Procedure provides that a continuation-in-part is “an application filed during the lifetime of an earlier nonprovisional application, repeating some substantial portion or all of the earlier nonprovisional application and adding matter not disclosed in the said earlier nonprovisional application.” MPEP 201.08.
A CIP application can have claims with different priority dates depending on whether a given claim is completely supported in the parent application or whether it contains …