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Posts Tagged: "Federal Courts"

What Patent Attorneys, Patent Agents and Law Firms Need to Know about Client Communications

Recently, however, the USPTO and the Federal Circuit have both clarified that a patent agent’s communications related to his or her authorized practice are protected in the same manner as attorney client communications, such as those by patent attorneys… Further, state courts are not bound by USPTO rules or Federal Circuit law. Accordingly, to the extent a patent agent’s communications regarding his or her authorized practice are at issue in a state court proceeding that can’t be removed to a federal jurisdiction, the communications may not have the same protection as that provided in a federal court or AIA proceeding. Although the circumstances under which communications between a patent agent and a client would be discoverable in litigation in state court are limited, the potential admissibility in various states leaves a gap in the potential privilege.

The Impacts of the Pending Rule 11 Amendments on the Patent System

The effects of proposed Rule 11 on the patent system will be like putting an additional bullet to a dying man. As far as patent litigation is concerned, the pending rule is intended to deliver what was missed in the AIA: shifting fees from infringers to patent owners.

Proposed Amendments to Rule 11 Will Adversely Impact Patent Owners

Congressman Lamar Smith (R-TX), has sponsored a bill to amend Rule 11 — H.R. 720. The changes are made to remove the safe harbor provision and make sanctions mandatory. This bill has passed the House. A companion bill — S. 237 — has been introduced in the Senate with no action yet being taken… The proposed changes to Rule 11, if enacted, will have an impact of keeping unrepresented parties out of courts, and make the U.S. courts even more inefficient. It will have an adverse impact on patent owners in patent cases… Given the nature of patent litigation, experience teaches that it is inevitable that whenever a case is disposed of the winner will almost certainly try to shift litigation fees by any means possible, including by invoking Rule 11 sanctions. The parties with strong financial powers will have better chances to get sanction awards.