Update on PTAB and Prior Art Submissions

Based on initial numbers, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is pleased with the response to two key provisions of the America Invents Act. 

The USPTO has received 88 PTAB submissions, 73 for inter partes reviews and 15 for covered business method reviews. The numbers suggest the program will meet FY 13 expectations, and further that officials have recognized that “momentum is building.”

Inter Partes review is a new post-grant (after a patent has issued) proceeding created by the America Invents Act (AIA) for challenging a patent. Inter Partes Review replaces and improves upon Inter Partes reexamination. Inter Partes Reviews are typically used by those involved in or threatened with patent litigation because the process is significantly faster and less expensive than litigation. Inter Partes Review is a particularly useful tool against trolls and patent owners with extensive continuation portfolios.

The USPTO received 270 prior-art submissions from third parties, which also met the agency’s expectations. The leading art group receiving submissions, TC 3700, includes many software-related inventions such as those found in electronic gaming devices and medical equipment. However, almost all art groups are recieving prior art submission, and it was noted that the “AIA is indeed supporting the patent system broadly.”

There are a lot of good points being made with this new program:

  • First, they demonstrate that the public finds valuable the new ways to interact with the USPTO.
  • Second, they will contribute quickly to improved patent quality.
  • With the PTAB proceedings, valid patents will be upheld while addressing those that may require correction.
  • With prior art submissions, examiners will be able to consider public submissions and ensure high quality work during the review process.

How Can I Help?

For more information about how you or your company can benefit from the new procedures available under the AIA, contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at nvantreeck@usip.com or call TOLL FREE at 1-855-UR IDEAS (1-855-874-3327) and ask for Norman.

– Ex astris, scientia –

I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney in Pasadena, California and I am a Rising Star as rated by Super Lawyers Magazine.  As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities. Connect with me on Google +