Manus Cooney Part II – The Future of Patent Reform
The PTO, the House and Senate Judiciary Committee staffs, and some segments of the patent community, mainly those that were supporters of the AIA, had drafted a a proposed technical corrections bill. Obviously, if a proposed change is purely technical in nature, there shouldn’t be a lot of trouble passing it, but what is technical and what is not technical can be a rather subjective test. There has been some talk about efforts to change the AIA in ways that would have substantive effect on the law . And it’s those issues that have garnered some attention in recent months. There was some discussion about changing the estoppel standard for the post grant review provisions of the AIA, and there have been some proposals regarding a proposed expansion of prior user rights being kicked around as well. If those are on the table or appear in a technical corrections package, “technical” in quotes, I think it would be difficult to pass such a measure this calendar year. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean that those who support those changes won’t continue to press for them and try to see them enacted, if not this year maybe next year.