I write some provisional patents and I plan to merge them into a single patent application. I need to renumber the figures, merging paragraphs... but not adding any new element. But will it be considered as adding new elements to the patents from the legal point of view?
But will it be considered as adding new elements to the patents from the legal point of view?
Nothing prevents an applicant from adding new matter over provisional applications in a new non-provisional application claiming priority to the provisionals.
However, if new matter is added, some claim(s) may not be entitled to the priority date(s) of the provisionals.
If it turns out that the applicant/patentee must rely on the priority date(s) of the provisional(s), the question will arise whether the provisional(s) are adequate written descriptive support for the claims (on a claim-by-claim basis).
The test for adequate written descriptive support takes into account the understanding of one of ordinary skill in the art. That is, word-for-word correspondence is not required.
I need to renumber the figures, merging paragraphs [...]
Such superficial changes will usually not negate written descriptive support.
However, it is in some cases possible that a merger of paragraphs may introduce a new concept; for example, if it creates a combination that was not suggested before.