The patent system has seen dramatic changes over the years with the objective centered on seeking for game-changing patent reforms. Even after the passage of the American Invents Act (AIA) in 2011, certain groups continued to press the Congress for additional reform that addresses patent protection against Patent Assertion Entities (PAEs), most commonly known as patent trolls. In response, the Congress sponsored legislations directed towards patent reform once again. Among these legislations are the Innovation Act and its Senate counterpart, the Protecting American Talent and Entrepreneurship (PATENT) Act.
Re-introduced in February 2015, The Innovation Act includes, among other things, heightened pleading requirements, more limits on early discoveries and greater judicial latitude for awarding fee-shifting. The PATENT Act introduced in April 2015 shares similar provisions as seen in the Innovation Act. Additionally, both the Innovation Act and the PATENT Act include provisions on customer stays and demand letter content.
Since the latter half of 2015, there has been a discussion of possible further amendment to the bills in addition to the mentioned provisions. While these bills promise to strengthen patent rights while simultaneously aiming to discourage patent trolls, there are still criticisms that emerge in response to the bills’ proposals. Critics assert that the proposed reforms will undermine the patent system and harm U.S. competitiveness. Nevertheless, companies should stay attentive to the ongoing patent reform issues and should continue to assess the value of their patent portfolio in the present legal environment.
In a two-hour LIVE Webcast, a panel of thought leaders and practitioners assembled by The Knowledge Group will discuss the significant and latest issues in Sweeping Developments in Patent Reform Agenda: The Innovation Act and the PATENT Act.
Key issues that will be covered are: