11.23 Committee on Discipline.§ 11.23 Committee on Discipline.
(a) The USPTO Director shall appoint a Committee on Discipline. The Committee on Discipline shall consist of at least three employees of the Office. None of the Committee members shall report directly or indirectly to the OED Director or any employee designated by the USPTO Director to decide disciplinary matters. Each Committee member shall be a member in good standing of the bar of the highest court of a State. The Committee members shall select a Chairperson from among themselves. Three Committee members will constitute a panel of the Committee.
(b) Powers and duties of the Committee on Discipline. The Committee shall have the power and duty to:
(1) Meet in panels at the request of the OED Director and, after reviewing evidence presented by the OED Director, by majority vote of the panel, determine whether there is probable cause to bring charges under § 11.32 against a practitioner; and
(2) Prepare and forward its own probable cause findings and recommendations to the OED Director.
(c) No discovery shall be authorized of, and no member of the Committee on Discipline shall be required to testify about deliberations of, the Committee on Discipline or of any panel.
(d) The Chairperson shall appoint the members of the panels and a Contact Member of the Committee on Discipline.