The most recent step of the examination process in question was to submit another response to the examiner, which at this point required an RCE and the associated fee. On the RCE form, under Miscellaneous, is the following option which I selected and completed as follows:
The reason for wanting to delay examination is that the patent family, including this open application, is now in a marketing effort by a broker. I wanted to keep this one open as long as possible, theoretically to enhance value for a potential buyer who may want to modify it further. However I did write my response such that I believed it had a good chance to overcome previous objections and rejections.
However, to my surprise I just received NOA on this, and received it very quickly – as in, about one month after submission. The USPTO had totally ignored the request to “suspend action,” and proceeeded full-speed-ahead. In normal circumstances, of course such a quick NOA would be very good news. But in light of the marketing strategy, it means I'll need to open another application at my expense, in order to have a package that includes this option. (I do have a few months to do that, since the issue fee hasn't been paid yet.)
Of course it would make no sense to ask them to withdraw the NOA. But is there anything that would make sense to (attempt) to pressure them to do, in light of the oversight error at their end?
[more experienced users here, please modify tags as appropriate]