My question is, can anybody provide any part of the US patent law proving or disproving the statement that:
Dropped and unpublished provisionals do not impede novelty of other inventions?
And how about dropped but published provisionals for patents with priority date between filing and publishing of said provisional?
A provisional is filed and then dropped later, without beeing published.
Someone else files the exact same invention 2 years later (without knowledge of the other provisional).
Including a comment from olsonist about US patent law:
When you file your patent, you will sign the DECLARATION FOR UTILITY OR DESIGN PATENT APPLICATION. The first paragraph of this declaration says: I hereby declare that: (1) Each inventor's residence, mailing address, and citizenship are as stated below next to their name; and (2) I believe the inventor(s) named below to be the original and first inventor(s) of the subject matter which is claimed and for which a patent is sought on the invention titled. Do not lie on this form. It is a Federal offense. If someone else filed the provisional then you are not the original and first inventor.
The question is only about novelty and inventive step in this case or about unpublished provisionals beeing prior art, but the above should be remembered if using the question/answers as advice, as it's a very important point. However sometimes many or changing entities might have the right to apply for a patent on a given invention, so the case discussed here does exist.