Posts Tagged: "Senator Orrin Hatch"

Patent Reform: The Senate Makes Its Move

With a powerful vote of 87 to 3 on a motion to bring debate to a close, the Senate is on the cusp of passing comprehensive patent reform legislation. S.23, “The America Invents Act,” is expected to pass with a strong vote as early as Wednesday of this week. In the end, the full House and Senate will need to pass the same version of any patent reform bill before it can become law. Assuming House Judiciary Committee Chairman Smith passes a bill of note through the House; the House and Senate bills will need to be reconciled. While civics books teach that the differences in the bills will be resolved via a formal Conference Committee, the Senate and House have not conferenced on a Judiciary Committee bill since 2005. A formal conference for patent reform is considered very unlikely.

Patent Reform, End to Fee Diversion, Heats Up in Congress

Congress is at it once again, with the Senate Judiciary Committee reporting out a bill last week that remarkably resembles the bill that has been unable to gain any traction in the Senate for the last several years. That would suggest that the same fate is in store for this legislation. Not so fast! I have a suspicion that this year things are different and that we really could be on the cusp of patent reform. Whether that is for better or for worse will largely be in the eye of the beholder, but what is emerging feels different and I think we are closer to change, and perhaps an end to fee diversion, than we have been at any point over the last 6 years.

Bipartisan Group Of Senators Urge Action On Patent Reform

A bipartisan group of 25 Senators Wednesday sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) urging him to schedule a vote on the bipartisan Patent Reform Act. The legislation will make the first reforms to the nation’s patent laws in more than 55 years, and will update the patent system to improve patent quality and increase certainty among parties in litigation.

Todd Dickinson Interview Part 2: Patent Reform is Not Dead

In this second installment of my interview with current AIPLA Executive Director and former USPTO Director, Q. Todd Dickinson, we start out discussing pendency at the Patent Office. Dickinson tells me about the incentives he used to keep patent examiners as they matured into the level of experience where they are ready to really roll up their sleeves and become the work-horses that Office needs. We talk about the AIPLA position on the proposed Three Track Proposal now pending at the USPTO. We then moved into a very interesting discussion of patent reform, and a bombshell is dropped, at least in my opinion. I was surprised to hear Dickinson say that he does not think patent reform is dead for THIS legislative cycle. He says: “The clock’s running and, the plays have to be run a little faster,” but that he “can see a path forward once the Congress returns.” He goes on to point out that the American Inventors Protection Act was attached to an appropriations bill. Looking at what Congress has on its plate upon returning it looks like there are a lot of appropriations bills. Curious indeed!

Pharma Reverse Patent Payments Are Not An Antitrust Violation

The plaintiffs had argued that defendants had in fact violated Section 1 of the Sherman Act when they settled their dispute concerning the validity of Bayer’s Cipro patent by agreeing to a reverse exclusionary payment settlement. Bayer agreed to pay the generic challengers, and in exchange the generic firms conceded the validity of the Cipro patent. The Second Circuit panel affirmed the granting of summary judgment, finding themselves confined by the previous Second Circuit ruling in Tamoxifen. The panel did, however, make the extraordinary invitation to petition the Second Circuit for rehearing in banc, citing the exceptional importance of the antitrust implications, the fact that the primary authors of the Hatch-Waxman Act have stated reverse payments were never intended under the legislation and the fact that the Second Circuit in Tamoxifen simply got it wrong when they said that subsequent generic entrants could potentially obtain a 180 exclusive period even after the first would-be generic entrant had settled.

Analyzing Patent Reform Chances and First to File Provisions

Patent reform could be of sufficiently low political importance that Democrats and Republicans can get something done. If health care dies the Democrats will need to pass something desperately, perhaps many things, to show they actually accomplished something. Therefore, if health care dies I predict patent reform passes. If health care passes I predict patent reform will die, as the Congress and government slip into heightened posturing in advance of the 2010 elections.

Invention Promoters and the American Inventors Protection Act

Invention promotion firms, sometimes referred to as invention promotion companies, have been widely criticized in numerous circles, including political circles in Washington, DC, for many years.  The American Inventors Protection Act (AIPA) was enacted into law in 1999 and by its very name sought to address head on the problems faced by so many inventors.  In truth, the title of…

Top Patent Stories of the Decade 2000 – 2009 (Part 1)

This year as we wind down and look back we not only need to look back at the previous year, but the first decade of the new century and new millennium will be ending.  So at this reflective time of year it seems appropriate to take a look back at the biggest patent related news stories of the decade.  As…

Patent Reform: Obama Favors Major Changes to Patent Law

There has been something brewing for at least a couple weeks now on the patent reform agenda, and I have been trying to make sense of it all.  I am not sure I have my head wrapped around it yet, but the Wall Street Journal (via Dow Jones Newswire) is reporting that President Barack Obama is placing his support behind…

David Kappos Shines at Senate Confirmation Hearing

To start the confirmation proceedings in the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) introduced David Kappos this morning with a lengthy and impressive recitation of Kappos’ credentials and experience.  He started out with IBM as an engineer after graduating with highest honors from the University of California Davis with a degree in electrical and computer engineering, and moved to…

American Ingenuity Will Lead US to Prosperity

Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) has been out in front on patent and intellectual property issues for years, and he is at it once again.  Senator Hatch has recently been very active with respect to writing op-ed articles explaining what all of us in the patent community have known for a very long time.  My hope is that his profile will…

President Obama Intends to Appoint Kappos as PTO Head

UPDATED: 8:42pm ET At some point in time today, presumably after I nominated Alfred E. Neuman for PTO Director, President Obama announced that he intends to appoint David Kappos as the Undersecretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property, a position that will make him the Director of the USPTO.  It was predictable that word of the nomination, or iminent nomination, would…

Saving US Innovation: More Patent Funding Needed

Yesterday I posted an article titled Innovation Held Hostage by the Patent Office.  In the article I detailed some troubling things I have learned regarding what appears to be best explained by patent examiners taking cases out of order.  The Patent Office is a first-in-first-out (FIFO) system, or at least it is supposed to be.  A couple patent attorneys have…

Senator Hatch Speaks at World Copyright Summit

What follows is a copy of the remarks of Senator Orrin Hatch, delivered at the World Copyright Summit earlier this morning at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC.  It is great to hear Senator Hatch discuss the importance of protecting intellectual property rights against the actions of infringers.  In my opinion, intellectual property rights are essential to guarantee continued…

Uncertain Future for Patent Reform Legislation

As of today, legislative patent reform efforts are working their way through Congress. We are further along the road to legislative reform than at any point in time over the last 4 years, but the ultimate outcome is still not certain. The Senate Judiciary Committee has reported out a version of patent reform, so there is a real expectation that…


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