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Posts Tagged: "preissuance submission"

Using Anonymous Third-Party Submissions to Advance Your Business Goals

A decent patent strategy starts with protecting your current commercial product.  A better patent strategy builds on this by not only considering what is, but what could be.  To provide real value, consider the actions of others and invest time studying the patent landscape and gathering business intelligence from competitors’ filings.  Additionally, instead of passively observing such filings, a company should also consider being more active by filing one or more third-party submissions (often termed preissuance submissions) in their competitor’s pending applications.  These third-party submissions are a terrific defensive tool to slow down or impede your competitors’ patent ambitions.

The America Invents Act on Its Fifth Anniversary: A Promise Thus Far Only Partially Fulfilled

Unfortunately, Mr. President, after five years I cannot report back that the AIA has yet ”improve[d] patent quality and help[ed] give entrepreneurs the protection and the confidence they need to attract investment, to grow their businesses, and to hire more workers.” The current implementation of PTO post issuance proceedings is undermining confidence in our patent system, chilling innovation at its roots, and, in eyes of some, giving the AIA a bad name.

USPTO Hopes for More Submissions of Prior Art with New Patent Application Alert Service

The Patent Application Alert Service (PAAS), born of a partnership between the USPTO and Reed Tech, a LexisNexis company, is a system that provides customized email alerts to the public for free when a patent application is published. Users of the system create an account and then save one or more searches. Whenever a patent application relevant to the search publishes an email alert is automatically sent. The Patent Office is hopeful that the new system will lead to greater numbers of pre-issuance third party submissions of prior art.

USPTO Offers New Tool to Receive Email Alerts when Patent Applications Publish

Through a partnership with Reed Technology and Information Services, the USPTO announces the release of the Patent Application Alert Service. This system provides customized, email alerts to the public for free when patent applications of interest are published. Additionally, the system offers direct access to the published applications that meet your search criteria.

Strategic Considerations Before Filing and During Early Stages of Patent Prosecution

Under the AIA and through its own initiatives, the USPTO has developed many programs that facilitate the prosecution of applications through the Office. Applicants should consider the usefulness of these programs in any on-going and newly filed U.S. patent applications.

PTO Seeks Comments on Crowdsourcing Prior Art

Last week the United States Patent and Trademark Office announced that they will be holding a roundtable event on April 10, 2014, to discuss President Obama’s desire to find ways to allow the public to provide the Patent Office with prior art… [T]he real problem facing the Patent Office isn’t just that the industry by and large has completely rejected preissuance submissions, but rather the real problem is why. I have repeatedly heard this: “Why would I want to file prior art to help make the patent stronger?” In fact, at a recent conference I heard one attorney who had filed a preissuance submission explain that a strategic decision was made not to file the best prior art because if the patent examiner issues the patent anyway the client decided they wanted to hold on to the best prior art to challenge the patent later.

Proactively Defending Against Patent Lawsuits

By keeping an eye on stealth and dangerous patents managing the future risk presented is much easier. By proactively monitoring the landscape of published applications and granted patents you may be able to engage in design work-arounds to avoid the most dangerous patents. You may also be able to actively identify patents and pending patent application that are ripe for licensing or acquisition at an early stage, perhaps before the patent even issues or before the patent works its way into the hands of a litigious patent owner. Even if you cannot acquire rights through licensing or acquire all dangerous patents, if you have a meaningful patent footprint that gives you the right to do a variety of things you may well be able to defend based upon having broad based rights to engage in what it is that you are accused of doing.

AIA Oddities: Third Party Submissions of Prior Art

A preissuance submission may be made in any non-provisional utility, design, and plant application, as well as in any continuing application. It is worth specifically noting that preissuance submissions may be made regardless of when the underlying application was originally filed. Thus, a third-party preissuance submission can be made in any application filed on, before or after September 16, 2012. A third-party preissuance submission must include a concise description of the asserted relevance of each document submitted, and must be submitted within a certain statutorily specified time period. If a non-compliant submission is presented the Office will not set a time period for a third party to file a corrected third-party submission. Additionally, the Office will not accept amendments to non-compliant submissions that were previously filed. Instead, a third party who previously filed a non-compliant submission may file another complete submission, provided the statutory time period for filing a submission has not closed. In other words, the filing of a non-compliant submission will not toll the statutory time period to file.

USPTO Update: Track One Has 50% Allowance Rate

Hanlon started with statistics relating to the variety of new procedures that were ushered in as part of either phase one or phase two implementation of the America Invents Act (AIA). He started with prioritized examination, which went into effect on September 26, 2011. Between inception and February 19, 2013, there have been 8,554 requests for prioritized examination, with 94% of requests granted. In those cases where the petition was granted there were only 55 days from petition grant to the First Office Action, and the average days to final disposition has been just 168 days. So far there have been 3,667 final dispositions mailed with 1,828 allowances mailed, which corresponds to an allowance rate of 49.9%, which isn’t bad, but didn’t initially strike me as great either.

USPTO Publishes Final Rules on Preissuance Submissions

This new final rule eliminates 37 CFR 1.99, which provided for third-party submissions of patents, published patent applications, or printed publications in published patent applications, but did not permit an accompanying concise description of the relevance of each submitted document and limited the time period for such submissions to up to two months after the date of the patent application publication or the mailing of a notice of allowance, whichever is earlier.

America Invents: A Simple Guide to Patent Reform, Part 2

I have done quite a bit of writing about the America Invents Act, but I have been a bit derelict in providing the sequel to America Invents: A Simple Guide to Patent Reform, Part 1. Part of the reason, if not the entirety of the reason, is that the major parts of the American Invents Act that remain are anything but simple. On this note I embark upon Part 2, which will seek to make sense of prior user rights, post-grant review, preissuance submission and patentability changes. This will leave inter partes review, supplemental examination and derivation proceedings for the finale — Part 3.