Patent Litigation Reform Gains Momentum in the House

October 23, 2013

pic-techOver the past year, Congressman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, and his Senate counterpart, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), have been working on a bill to address the purported increase in patent-related litigation. During this process, NSBA signed onto a letter urging Members to exercise extreme caution in proceeding with any legislation that has the potential to further weaken our patent system. The letter called for targeted hearings on the various issues included in the proposed legislation before moving forward.

This week, Chairman Goodlatte is expected to release the final product of these efforts in the form of an actual bill that will seek to incorporate various aspects of several pieces of legislation that have been introduced on both sides of the Hill on issues ranging from heightened pleading requirements, fee shifting, and involuntary joinder to discovery reform, increased transparency of patent ownership, and improvements and technical corrections to the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act. Senator Patrick Leahy has yet to release his companion bill, but one is expected sometime this fall.

NSBA is in the process of reviewing the above-referenced legislation and will continue to update members with any relevant developments.