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A Mark-Up and Commentary on the

Leahy-Smith America Invents Act

by Dennis Crouch

© 2011

Mark-Up and Commentary on the LeahySmith America Invents Act

Dennis Crouch Associate Professor of Law University of Missouri School of Law www.patentlyo.com [email protected]

Copyright Notice: I give away almost all my writings by posting them online, either to Patently-O or to the SSRN website. However, I have decided to charge a fee to access this volume. Profit on this work allows me to continue my academic pursuits without seeking corporate grants or clients and their consequential influence. This work is copyrighted and is not intended to be freely copied or distributed without payment prior to March 16 2013,1 except for purely academic purposes within a law school setting. A special rate is available for any entity interested in purchasing the right to distribute multiple copies to their employees or clients. Cover art comes from U.S. Design Patent No. 635,060 owned by Yamaha of Japan and issued in March 2011. Although Congress determined that this particular should be titled the "America Invents Act," readers should remember that more US patent applications are now filed by foreign companies than by U.S. based companies. The amendments discussed herein apply equally to patent applicants regardless of the location of their headquarters, research laboratories, or manufacturing facilities. Dennis Crouch, October 2011

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As noted below, this is the effective date of the first-inventor-to-file provisions of the AIA.

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Table of Contents

Mark-Up and Commentary on the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act ............................................................ 2 Introduction. .................................................................................................................................................... 7 Effective Dates. ................................................................................................................................................ 8 Summary of New Law from the Congressional Research Service. ................................................................ 12 35 U.S.C. 2 Powers and duties. ...................................................................................................................... 19 35 U.S.C. 3 Officers and employees. .............................................................................................................. 23 35 U.S.C. 6 Patent Trial and Appeal Board. ................................................................................................... 28 35 U.S.C. 32 Suspension or exclusion from practice. .................................................................................... 30 35 U.S.C. 41 Patent Fees; Patent and Trademark Search Systems. ............................................................... 31 35 U.S.C. 42 Patent and Trademark Office funding. ...................................................................................... 39 35 U.S.C. 100 Definitions. .............................................................................................................................. 41 35 U.S.C. 101 Inventions patentable. ............................................................................................................ 43 35 U.S.C. 102 Conditions for patentability; novelty ...................................................................................... 44 35 U.S.C. 103 Conditions for patentability; non-obvious subject matter. ..................................................... 48 35 U.S.C. 104 REPEALED. ............................................................................................................................... 51 35 U.S.C. 111 Application. ............................................................................................................................. 53 35 U.S.C. 112 Specification. ........................................................................................................................... 55 35 U.S.C. 115 Inventor's oath or declaration. ............................................................................................... 56 35 U.S.C. 116 Inventors. ................................................................................................................................ 60 35 U.S.C. 118 Filing by other than inventor. .................................................................................................. 61 35 U.S.C. 119 Benefit of earlier filing date; right of priority. ......................................................................... 62 35 U.S.C. 120 Benefit of earlier filing date in the United States. ................................................................... 65 35 U.S.C. 121 Divisional applications. ............................................................................................................ 66 35 U.S.C. 122 Confidential status of applications; publication of patent applications. ................................. 67 35 U.S.C. 123. Micro entity defined............................................................................................................... 70 35 U.S.C. 134 Appeal to the Patent Trial and Appeal Board.......................................................................... 72 35 U.S.C. 135 Derivation proceedings. .......................................................................................................... 73 35 U.S.C. 141 Appeal to the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. .......................................................... 76 35 U.S.C. 143. Proceedings on appeal. .......................................................................................................... 77 35 U.S.C. 145 Civil action to obtain patent. ................................................................................................... 78 35 U.S.C. 146 Civil action in case of derivation proceeding........................................................................... 79 35 U.S.C. 154 Contents and term of patent; provisional rights. .................................................................... 80 35 U.S.C. 155 REPEALED. ............................................................................................................................... 86 35 U.S.C. 155A REPEALED. ............................................................................................................................. 87 35 U.S.C. 156 Extension of patent term. ....................................................................................................... 88

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35 U.S.C. 157 REPEALED. .............................................................................................................................100 35 U.S.C. 172 Right of priority. ....................................................................................................................101 35 U.S.C. 184 Filing of application in foreign country. ................................................................................102 35 U.S.C. 185 Patent barred for filing without license. ...............................................................................103 35 U.S.C. 202 Disposition of rights. .............................................................................................................104 35 U.S.C. 251 Reissue of defective patents. ................................................................................................109 35 U.S.C. 253 Disclaimer. .............................................................................................................................110 35 U.S.C. 256 Correction of named inventor. ..............................................................................................111 35 U.S.C. 257 Supplemental examinations to consider, reconsider, or correct information ......................112 35 U.S.C. 273 Defense to infringement based on prior commercial use.....................................................115 35 U.S.C. 282 Presumption of validity; defenses. ........................................................................................120 35 U.S.C. 287 Limitation on damages and other remedies; marking and notice. .......................................122 35 U.S.C. 288 Action for infringement of a patent containing an invalid claim. .........................................127 35 U.S.C. 291 Derived Patents. ....................................................................................................................128 35 U.S.C. 292 False marking. .......................................................................................................................129 35 U.S.C. 293 Nonresident patentee; service and notice. ...........................................................................130 35 U.S.C. 298. Advice of counsel. ................................................................................................................131 35 U.S.C. 299. Joinder of parties..................................................................................................................132 35 U.S.C. 301 Citation of prior art and written statements. ........................................................................133 35 U.S.C. 302 Request for reexamination....................................................................................................134 35 U.S.C. 303 Determination of issue by Director. ......................................................................................135 35 U.S.C. 304 Reexamination order by Director. .........................................................................................136 35 U.S.C. 305 Conduct of reexamination proceedings. ...............................................................................137 35 U.S.C. 306 Appeal. ..................................................................................................................................138 35 U.S.C. 311 Inter partes review ................................................................................................................139 35 U.S.C. 312 Petitions ................................................................................................................................141 35 U.S.C. 312 Determination of issue by Director -- Transitional until September 16, 2012 ......................142 35 U.S.C. 313 Preliminary response to petition ...........................................................................................143 35 U.S.C. 313 Inter partes reexamination order by Director -- Transitional until September 16, 2012 ......144 35 U.S.C. 314 Institution of inter partes review. .........................................................................................145 35 U.S.C. 315 Relation to other proceedings or actions ..............................................................................147 35 U.S.C. 316 Conduct of inter partes review .............................................................................................150 35 U.S.C. 317 Settlement .............................................................................................................................153 35 U.S.C. 318 Decision of the Board ............................................................................................................155 35 U.S.C. 319 Appeal ...................................................................................................................................157 35 U.S.C. 321 Post-grant review ..................................................................................................................158 35 U.S.C. 322 Petitions ................................................................................................................................159 35 U.S.C. 323 Preliminary response to petition ...........................................................................................160

4 © 2011

35 U.S.C. 324 Institution of post-grant review ............................................................................................161 35 U.S.C. 325 Relation to other proceedings or actions ..............................................................................163 35 U.S.C. 326 Conduct of post-grant review ...............................................................................................165 35 U.S.C. 327 Settlement .............................................................................................................................168 35 U.S.C. 328 Decision of the Board ............................................................................................................169 35 U.S.C. 329 Appeal ...................................................................................................................................170 35 U.S.C. 363 International application designating the United States: Effect. ..........................................171 35 U.S.C. 365 Right of priority; benefit of the filing date of a prior application. .........................................172 35 U.S.C. 374 Publication of international application. ...............................................................................173 35 U.S.C. 375 Patent issued on international application: Effect. ...............................................................174 Additional Provisions in the Act...................................................................................................................175 Public Law 112-29 SEC. 2. DEFINITIONS. .....................................................................................................175 Public Law 112-29 Sec. 3(l) New Study Provision - Small Business Study- ..................................................176 Public Law 112-29 Sec. 3(m) New Study Provision - Report on Prior User Rights- .....................................178 Public Law 112-29 Sec. 6(c)(2)(B) Graduated Implementation of Inter Partes Reexamination ..................179 Public Law 112-29 Sec. 10 New Implementation Provision - Fee Setting ...................................................180 Public Law 112-29 Sec. 11(h) New Implementation Provision - Prioritized Examination Fees ...................183 Public Law 112-29 Sec. 11(i) New Implementation Provision - Appropriation Account Transition Fees ....185 Public Law 112-29 Sec. 14 TAX STRATEGIES DEEMED WITHIN THE PRIOR ART. ......................................... 186 Public Law 112-29 Sec. 16(a)(3) New Study Provision - Report on Virtual Marking- ..................................187 Public Law 112-29 SEC. 18. TRANSITIONAL PROGRAM FOR COVERED BUSINESS METHOD PATENTS........188 Public Law 112-29 SEC. 23. SATELLITE OFFICES. ..........................................................................................191 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 24. DESIGNATION OF DETROIT SATELLITE OFFICE. ................................................193 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 26. STUDY ON IMPLEMENTATION. ........................................................................194 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 27. STUDY ON GENETIC TESTING. ..........................................................................195 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 28. PATENT OMBUDSMAN PROGRAM FOR SMALL BUSINESS CONCERNS. ..........196 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 29. ESTABLISHING METHODS FOR STUDYING DIVERSITY OF APPLICANTS. ...........197 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 30. SENSE OF CONGRESS. ......................................................................................198 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 31. USPTO STUDY ON INTERNATIONAL PATENT PROTECTIONS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES. ................................................................................................................................................199 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 32. PRO BONO PROGRAM. ....................................................................................200 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 33. LIMITATION ON ISSUANCE OF PATENTS. .........................................................201 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 34. STUDY OF PATENT LITIGATION. .......................................................................202 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 35. EFFECTIVE DATE. ..............................................................................................203 Public Law 112-20 SEC. 36. BUDGETARY EFFECTS. ......................................................................................204 28 U.S.C. 1295 Jurisdiction of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit .........................205 28 U.S.C. 1338. PATENTS, PLANT VARIETY PROTECTION, COPYRIGHTS, MASK WORKS, DESIGNS, TRADEMARKS, AND UNFAIR COMPETITION ................................................................................................208

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© 2011

28 U.S.C. 1454 Patent, plant variety protection, and copyright cases ........................................................209 42 U.S.C. 2182. INVENTIONS CONCEIVED DURING COMMISSION CONTRACTS; OWNERSHIP; WAIVER; HEARINGS ....................................................................................................................................................210 Senate Colloquy Regarding Changes to Section102 ....................................................................................212 House Judiciary Committee Report on the America Invents Act (H.R. 1249) .............................................215

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© 2011

35 U.S.C. 32.

AIA Markup and Commentary

Dennis D. Crouch

35 U.S.C. 32 Suspension or exclusion from practice.

Commentary: This section sets a statute of limitations on USPTO disciplinary actions against patent attorneys or patent agents guilty of misconduct. Any proceeding must now be commenced within either 10-years of the misconduct or within 1-year of the date that the misconduct is made known to the USPTO. The USPTO is now also required to regularly report to congress on incidents regarding misconduct. *****

The Director may, after notice and opportunity for a hearing, suspend or exclude, either generally or in any particular case, from further practice before the Patent and Trademark Office, any person, agent, or attorney shown to be incompetent or disreputable, or guilty of gross misconduct, or who does not comply with the regulations established under section 2(b)(2)(D) of this title,), or who shall, by word, circular, letter, or advertising, with intent to defraud in any manner, deceive, mislead, or threaten any applicant or prospective applicant, or other person having immediate or prospective business before the Office. The reasons for any such suspension or exclusion shall be duly recorded. The Director shall have the discretion to designate any attorney who is an officer or employee of the United States Patent and Trademark Office to conduct the hearing required by this section. The United States District Court for the District of ColumbiaA proceeding under this section shall be commenced not later than the earlier of either the date that is 10 years after the date on which the misconduct forming the basis for the proceeding occurred, or 1 year after the date on which the misconduct forming the basis for the proceeding is made known to an officer or employee of the Office as prescribed in the regulations established under section 2(b)(2)(D). The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, under such conditions and upon such proceedings as it by its rules determines, may review the action of the Director upon the petition of the person so refused recognition or so suspended or excluded.2

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The Public Law includes the following statement with relation to section 32: REPORT TO CONGRESS- The Director shall provide on a biennial basis to the Judiciary Committees of the Senate and House of Representatives a report providing a short description of incidents made known to an officer or employee of the Office as prescribed in the regulations established under section 2(b)(2)(D) of title 35, United States Code, that reflect substantial evidence of misconduct before the Office but for which the Office was barred from commencing a proceeding under section 32 of title 35, United States Code, by the time limitation established by the fourth sentence of that section.

30 © 2011

35 U.S.C. 100.

AIA Markup and Commentary

Dennis D. Crouch

35 U.S.C. 100 Definitions.

Commentary: Section 100 includes a short list of definitions. The two most important new definitions here include "joint research agreement" and "effective filing date." The definition of the effective filing date is at the heart of the new firstinventor-to-file regime largely codified in section 102. *****

When used in this title unless the context otherwise indicates (a) The term "invention" means invention or discovery. (b) The term "process" means process, art, or method, and includes a new use of a known process, machine, manufacture, composition of matter, or material. (c) The terms "United States" and "this country" mean the United States of America, its territories and possessions. (d) The word "patentee" includes not only the patentee to whom the patent was issued but also the successors in title to the patentee. (e) The term "third-party requester" means a person requesting ex parte reexamination under section 302 or inter partes reexamination under section 311 who is not the patent owner. (f) The term "inventor" means the individual or, if a joint invention, the individuals collectively who invented or discovered the subject matter of the invention. (g) The terms "joint inventor" and "coinventor" mean any 1 of the individuals who invented or discovered the subject matter of a joint invention. (h) The term "joint research agreement" means a written contract, grant, or cooperative agreement entered into by 2 or more persons or entities for the performance of experimental, developmental, or research work in the field of the claimed invention. (i)(1) The term "effective filing date" for a claimed invention in a patent or application for patent means(A) if subparagraph (B) does not apply, the actual filing date of the patent or the application for the patent containing a claim to the invention; or (B) the filing date of the earliest application for which the patent or application is entitled, as to such invention, to a right of priority under section 119, 365(a), or 365(b) or to the benefit of an earlier filing date under section 120, 121, or 365(c).

41 © 2011

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