Hatch Writes President Over Lack of PTO Director

On Monday, June 2, 2014, Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) wrote to President Obama expressing concern with the fact that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has been without a director for more than 16 months. The letter from Senator Hatch to President Obama is reproduced below.

In the letter, Senator Hatch also questions whether USPTO Director Michelle Lee was appointed consistent with 35 U.S.C. § 3(b)(1).

There has not been a Director of the Office since David Kappos left in January 2013. Still, the Director did not nominate Michelle Lee for the post as Deputy Director. There has been much made about this in some circles, some saying that the appointment of Lee was in violation of the law. I don’t see a real problem in this case.


Did You Know… About Patents and Presidents

by treasuresthouhastBy: Gene Quinn (IPWatchdog.com)

Did you know that President George Washington was a big proponent of a patent system? But he certainly was.

In fact, during his very first State of the Union Address, President Washington implored Congress to immediately take action on passing a Patent Act. See Celebrating Presidents Who Advocated for the Patent System. His urging did not go unnoticed. The first Patent Act, the Patent Act of 1790, was signed into law on April 10, 1790, just several months after President Washington asked Congress to take action.

Did you know that President Thomas Jefferson was one of the first three U.S. patent examiners?


USPTO Fee Increase Effective September 26TH

Scott McKeown, Partner at Oblon Spivak and Practice Center Contributor, sent in this article discussing the new 15% fee surcharge for patent application filings that will take effect on September 26th.

America Invents Act Raises USPTO Fees September 26th

Last Friday, President Obama signed the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act(AIA) into law. As discussed previously, one of the major changes that became effective immediately is the new standard for initiating inter partes patent reexamination. As the rush to beat the enactment deadline is now over, what other changes are on the immediate horizon at the USPTO?

Fee Increases.

For those with patent application filings of any kind due in the next few weeks, keep in mind that new 15% fee surcharge will take effect on September 26th (10th day after enactment). Note that the fees for filing a request for ex parte patent reexamination and inter partes patent reexamination remain unchanged. A schedule of the increased fees is found (here).

The USPTO has also posted a FAQ on the various provisions of the AIA. (here)



Senate Votes 89-9 to Pass Patent Reform, No End to Fee Diversion

Written by Gene Quinn, of IPWatchdog and Practice Center Contributor.

It looks like my prediction on Tuesday that the Senate would pass H.R. 1249, the America Invents Act, prior to President Obama’s much anticipated jobs and economy speech that begins at 7:00pm ET today, Thursday, September 8, 2011.  The Senate voted to pass H.R. 1249 and send the House version of the America Invents Act to the White House for President Obama’s signature by a vote of 89 to 9.  The Coburn Amendment, which would have once and for all put an end to fee diversion, was unsuccessful, being tabled by a vote of 50 to 48.

Beginning at 4:00pm ET the Senate started considering three separate amendments to H.R. 1249.  The passage of any would have required the legislation to ping back to the House of Representatives, but that was not to happen.

The first amendment considered was offered by Senator Sessions. The Sessions Amendment would have removed section 37 of the American Invents Act relating to the calculation of the 60-day period for applying for certain patent term extensions. At 4:10pm the roll call was run through for the first time with only 9 Senators having voted. Over the next 22 minutes 89 other Senators would make their way to the Senate floor to cast their votes. At 4:32pm the vote was announced; the Senate voted 51 to 47 to defeat the Sessions Amendment.

Click here to read the full IPWatchdog publication.