Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Draft Report of S. 1145 is (Unofficially) Available

The IPO recently reported that a draft of the Senate Judiciary Committee's report on S. 1145 has been circulated in the Washington lobbying community and on the internet. The draft report provides some interesting insight on the bill approved by the Senate on July 19, 2007, but does not contain any new or compromise provisions. It is anticipated that the report will undergo additional changes, and be finalized and issued as the official committee report on the July 19 bill.

The contents of the circulated draft bill provides

  • Background and Purpose of S. 1145, the Patent Reform Act of 2007;
  • History of the Bill and Committee Consideration;
  • Section-by-Section Summary of the Bill;
  • Cost Estimate;
  • Regulatory Impact Evaluation; and
  • Changes to Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported
According to the draft report, the numbered sections of the Act do the following:

(1) title the Act the Patent Reform Act of 2007;

(2) change the system to a “first-inventor-to-file” system;

(3) make it simpler for patent applicants to file and prosecute their applications;

(4) codify and clarify the standard for calculating reasonable royalty damage awards, as well as awards for willful infringement;

(5) create a relatively efficient and inexpensive administrative system for resolution of patent validity issues before the USPTO;

(6) establish the Patent Trial and Appeal Board;

(7) provide for eventual publication of all applications and enhance the utility of third
parties’ submissions of relevant information regarding filed applications;

(8) improve venue in patent cases and provides for appeals of claim construction orders whenwarranted;

(9) give the USPTO the ability to set its fees;

(10) remove the residency restriction for judges on the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit;

(11) authorize USPTO to require patent searches with explanations when a patent application is filed;

(12) codify and improve the doctrine of inequitable conduct;

(13) give the Director of the USPTO discretion to accept late filings in certain instances;

(14) limit patent liability for institutions implementing the “Check 21” program;

(15) end USPTO “fee diversion”;

(16) make necessary technical amendments; and

(17) set the effective date of the Act.

Download/view a copy of the draft report here, courtesy of the IPO (link)

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