Tag Archive for senate

Iancu’s First Hearing Answers Questions, Leaves More Open

On Wednesday, April 18, new USPTO Director Andrei Iancu appeared for his first oversight hearing in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee.  The Director was more open with the Committee compared to his confirmation process, leading to some interesting discussions. Algorithms Are Already Patentable A number of questions focused on the issue of patentable subject…

The Patent Examination Process Shouldn’t Be An Oversight

Director Iancu will be appearing for his first oversight hearing tomorrow, Wednesday, April 18.  This follows on his recent speech at the Chamber of Commerce, at which he emphasized two areas of focus: Patent rights should be more predictable and the system should be more stable. When discussing the patent system, dialogue should be more…

Fee-Setting Reauthorization Bill Introduced In Senate

Senator Coons has long been interested in strengthening patents.  While some of his efforts, like the STRONGER Patents Act, would actually harm the U.S.’s innovation economy by strengthening patents at the expense of innovation, his latest bill is different. Last week, Senator Coons (along with Senator Hatch) introduced the Building Innovation Growth through Data for…

Senate Introduces Bill To Prevent Abuse Of Sovereign Immunity

Yesterday Senators Cotton, McCaskill, Toomey, Ernst, and Perdue introduced the Preserving Access to Cost Effective Drugs (PACED) Act, a bill which would help prevent sovereign immunity from being abused to prevent invalid patents from being struck down by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. As Patent Progress has previously described, sovereign immunity has been abused…

Dear Director Iancu

So, you’re Andrei Iancu, about to be the newly confirmed Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office.  What are the first things you put on your agenda? I have some suggestions. Eliminate Contingent Amendments As an initial matter, the PTAB’s practice of allowing contingent amendments needs to end.  Essentially, this allows patent owners…

STRONGER Patents, WEAKER Innovation

Yesterday, Senator Coons introduced his STRONGER Patents Act.  Senator Coons provided a section-by-section description of the bill, as well as the text of the bill.  And after reading it, I have some concerns.  Patent Progress previously covered Senator Coons’ STRONG Patents Act.  Much of STRONG Patents wound up in STRONGER Patents, and our analysis back…

Michelle Lee’s Nomination Hearing Goes Smoothly

There were no big surprises in today’s hearing on Michelle Lee’s nomination as head of the USPTO. The Committee went fairly easy on her with their questions, with the possible exception of Senator Durbin, who admits that he knows nothing about patents or patent law, but seems convinced by his Illinois constituents that there is…

Merkley and Four Other Senators Call for PTO to Improve Patent Quality

Well, this is good to see: Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR), joined by Senator Mark Begich (D-AK), Senator Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) and Senator Mark Warner (D-VA), sent a letter yesterday to the Department of Commerce about patent quality. The letter urges a few measures to improve patent quality. Here are the highlights: Review performance metrics…

Senator Leahy Takes Patent Reform Off The Agenda

Well, you’ve probably heard the news: Senator Leahy announced that patent reform is off the agenda for the Judiciary Committee this month. This is the most aggravating part of Senator Leahy’s statement: I have said all along that we needed broad bipartisan support to get a bill through the Senate. Regrettably, competing companies on both…

Progress on Patent Reform Takes a Little Time

As you may have heard, we basically have a deal on patent reform in the Senate Judiciary Committee. While lawmakers couldn’t quite get it done before recess, they left town with what Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) described as a “broad bipartisan agreement in principle” on patent reform. I’m hearing from sources that…