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Patent Prosecution & Strategic Counseling

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Effective June 29, 2016, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) implemented a pilot program to provide for earlier review of patent applications pertaining to cancer immunotherapy.
Patent applicants who have filed a priority application (such as a U.S. Provisional application) may wish to abandon and then refile that priority application to extend the time available for filing a utility application.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) explains several patent prosecution trends, goals, and programs to justify proposed spending of its collected fees in its recently-issued Fiscal Year 2017 Congressional Justification report.
A recent U.S. District Court decision has clarified a potential danger when filing terminal disclaimers that contain overly-broad language. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in Hagenbuch v. Sonrai Systems interpreted the terminal disclaimer language “I hereby disclaim the terminal part of any patent granted on the above-identified application or any continuation of it” as applying to any continuation application claiming priority from the application in which this terminal disclaimer was filed.
The United States and Australia each offer the option of filing a provisional patent application before filing a national or PCT non-provisional patent application.
Two new Collaboration Search Pilot Programs are or will soon be available to patent applicants.  The Collaboration Search Pilot Program (CSP) between the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the Japan Patent Office (JPO) is available as of August 1, 2015.
Over the past few years, the Supreme Court’s decisions in Alice (Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank Int’l, 134 S.Ct. 2347 (2014)) and Mayo (Mayo Collaborative Servs. v. Prometheus Labs., Inc., 132 S. Ct. 1289 (2012)), and other cases relating to subject matter eligibility under 35 U.S.C. § 101 have resulted in significant changes in how the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) examines patent applications.
Have you seen John Oliver’s piece about abuses in the patent system? If not, take a look here. The ‘Last Week Tonight’ host has quite a bit of fun at the expense of the patent system.
In an order released on March 19, 2015, U.S. District Court Judge Richard Seeborg of the Northern District of California denied Amgen’s motion for judgment on the pleadings as well as its request for a preliminary injunction to prevent Sandoz from marketing its drug Zarxio®.
On March 12, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana joined the District of Delaware and Eastern District of Texas as the first courts to consider a generic drug manufacturer’s motion to dismiss a Hatch-Waxman patent infringement action for an alleged lack of personal jurisdiction following the Supreme Court’s decision in Daimler AG v. Bauman, 134 S.Ct. 746 (2014).
Patent applicants from the software and business method fields took notice after the United States Supreme Court issued its opinion in Alice Corporation Pty. Ltd. V. CLS Bank International, et al. (“Alice,” 134 S. Ct. 2347 (2014)) on June 19, 2014, and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) followed with preliminary guidelines (“Guidelines”) issued June 25, 2014 for examining subject matter eligibility under 35 U.S.C. § 101 of claims relating to a judicially created exception to patent eligibility.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued revised guidance to its examiners relating to determination of patent eligibility under 35 U.S.C. §101.
On February 5, 2015 the en banc Federal Circuit will hear oral argument in the matter of Suprema, Inc. v. ITC.
The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) was signed into law on September 16, 2011. While the AIA alters U.S. patent practice in several ways, perhaps the most significant change brought about by the law is the switch from a “first to invent” to a “first inventor to file” system, largely for purposes of harmonizing U.S. practice with the majority of other countries.
On October 1, 2014, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) announced the After Final Consideration Pilot 2.0 (“AFCP 2.0”) – a program intended to provide new features that will enhance communication between the USPTO and the applicant, as compared with the original After Final Consideration Pilot (“AFCP”).
On September 16, 2014, United States Patent and Trademark Office Chief of Staff Andrew Byrnes presented to the Boston Patent Law Association an update on new quality initiatives and the implementation of White House patent policies.
The Supreme Court yesterday issued its long-awaited decision in Alice Corporation v. CLS Bank International addressing the patent eligibility of computer-implemented inventions under 35 USC §101.
On March 4, 2014, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) issued a memorandum to the Patent Examining Corps with guidance for determining the patent eligibility of claims relating to products of nature and laws of nature (“the Guidance”) in view of the U.S. Supreme Court decisions in Assoc. for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics (“Myriad”) and Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories, Inc. (“Prometheus”).

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