Today the USPTO announced that it has filed a joint motion with Plaintiff GlaxoSmithKline to dismiss the lawsuit related to continuation rules. From todays' PTO press release:
Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO David Kappos has signed a new Final Rule rescinding highly controversial regulations, proposed by the previous administration, that patent applicants felt unduly restricted their capacity to protect intellectual property. The regulations, which addressed the number of continuation applications as well as the number of claims that could be included within each application, were published in the Federal Register in August 2007, but were enjoined and never came into effect.
The USPTO also announced that it will file a motion to dismiss and vacate the federal district-court decision in a lawsuit filed against the USPTO that sought to prevent the rules from taking effect. GlaxoSmithKline - one of two plaintiffs in the Tafas v. Kappos lawsuit - will join the USPTO’s motion for dismissal and vacatur.
“The USPTO should incentivize innovation, develop rules that are responsive to its applicants’ needs and help bring their products and services to market,” Kappos said. “These regulations have been highly unpopular from the outset and were not well received by the applicant community. In taking the actions we are announcing today, we hope to engage the applicant community more effectively on improvements that will help make the USPTO more efficient, responsive, and transparent to the public.”
Interestingly, plaintiff Tafas has not agreed to drop the action and maintains that the district court decision should be upheld to limit the USPTO’s substantive rulemaking power.
Read the USPTO press release here (link)