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Paul Hayes

is a retired software engineer. He has worked for Rockwell Collins, ITT’s Aerospace Communications Division, and currently is self-employed as sole owner and Managing Member of Hudson Bay Wireless LLC. He is also an avid activist for small inventors.

Recent Articles by Paul Hayes

A Note to SCOTUS on Arthrex, Judicial Independence, Ethics and Expanded Panels at the PTAB

In Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8, of our Constitution, the founders were relatively specific. The founders give Congress power to secure “the exclusive Right” to “Authors and Inventors” in the “Writings and Discoveries”. Congress is given  specific direction on how to do it (i.e., “for Limited Times”), and why it should be done (i.e., “To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts”). Unfortunately, the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) of 2011 dramatically changed how the Executive branch implements the Constitutional prerogative.  The AIA transferred power constitutionally allocated to the judicial branch to the executive branch – specifically, to Administrative Patent Judges (APJs) in the USPTO. In the process of implementing the Patent Trial and Appeals Board (PTAB) on which the APJs sit, judicial independence, judicial ethics, rules of evidence, and other protections commonly afforded rights holders in disputes adjudicated by the federal judiciary were sacrificed in the name of expediency.

Why We Need USPTO Examiners to Attend Inter Partes Reviews

Whoever wrote the America Invents Act (AIA) left out the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) examiners. The examiner on any given patent at issue in an inter partes review (IPR) proceeding at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) agreed with the patent holder that the patent claims, as amended, were valid. Examiners are specialists, working under Supervisory Patent Examiners (SPEs), who are even more experienced, though in very narrow fields. As such, they knew the state of the art at the time a patent was being prosecuted.

In Search of a Jury Trial: One Inventor’s Experience at the PTAB and Federal Circuit

Outlined below is the story of how the America Invents Act (AIA) of 2011 made a novel 2002 invention obvious in 2018. I’m the first named inventor of the 7058524 patent, which was filed on October 25, 2002. The title of the patent is “Electrical Power Metering System”. Unfortunately, I was never able to produce, let alone market the meter. There were many barriers to entry for my essentially hardware-based invention. I was working full time and had a growing family to be concerned with. Following retirement in 2013, I decided to attempt to license the ‘524’ technology. In early fall 2014, I partnered with a Non-Practicing Entity (NPE). I received an up-front sum and had an agreement with the NPE to share (fairly in my view) in any ‘back-end’ licensing revenue. After extensive investigation and attempts at licensing, in 2016 the NPE asserted against Duke Energy in Delaware. We believed Duke’s new smart meters, particularly those using Itron’s OpenWay Riva technology, were infringing the ‘524 patent. Ultimately, we were Rule 36ed by the Federal Circuit. In my opinion, the key broken piece in the system is the way the AIA removed the probability of a jury trial from the patent holder by creating a post-grant system that allows for abuse and delay of other proceedings.