NSBA to File Comments on New First-to-File Patent Regs

September 26, 2012

Next week, NSBA plans to file comments on the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM): Changes To Implement the First Inventor to File Provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, which was published in the Federal Register on Thursday, July 26, 2012.

The NSBA-opposed America Invents Act (AIA) was introduced in the Senate (formally as the Patent Reform Act of 2011) by Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), and by Reps. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Darrell Issa (R-Calf.) in the House. The bill was signed by President Obama on September 16, 2011, and several of the reforms contained therein have already been implemented. NSBA strongly opposed this legislation as it will have a severe and negative impact on America’s entrepreneurs and small-business community. By transforming the U.S. patent system from a first-to-invent to a first-to-file system, changing the provisions on post-grant patent challenges, and effectively eliminating the grace period, among other reform, the AIA hands larger, multinational corporations a significant advantage over small innovators.

All NSBA members are encouraged to review the proposed rules and provide us with any comments, suggestions or concerns no later than this Friday, Sept. 28 at 5:00 p.m. EDT. The deadline for submitting comments is October 5, 2012.