U.S. Patent Prosecution for Support Staff: A Desk Reference: Rosaleen A. Walsh. I have yet to read this, but it looks interesting. The Amazon description: U.S. Patent Prosecution for Support Staff is a practical desk reference, designed to promote ongoing learning and job proficiency for paralegals and secretaries assisting patent practitioners in submitting filings to the United States Patent and Trademark Office. It presents complex filing requirements in an easy-to-follow format, and reduces volumes of information into concise, accessible learning points that will assist both novice and seasoned support staff alike as they work to develop or update the breadth and depth of their knowledge of U.S. patent prosecution. A comprehensive guide, U.S. Patent Prosecution for Support Staff provides a detailed step-by-step guide to the filing requirements for the most frequently filed activities in U.S. patent prosecution, as well as more novel filings. The content includes the most recent provisions of the America Invents Act, the American Invents Act Technical Corrections Bill, and the Patent Law Treaty.

Patent Drafting: Not as Easy as You Think – IPWatchdog.com | Patents & Patent Law. We all know how important it is to patent an invention, but some consider the do-it-yourself approach. This article explains the importance of getting it right, which may (likely will) require an expert to draft the patent. There are also some good IPWatchdog.com links to some basic patenting information.

The George Washington Law Symposium on IP. May 6, 2014, Washington, D.C. I would encourage those interested in a good overview of the state of patent law in the US to attend. It’s a low-cost (US$75 registration) opportunity to learn more about, as the site describes:

  • Beginning of a New Era: Post Issuance PTO Proceedings

  • Tips and Trends: Litigating Patent Cases in the Federal Courts

  • ITC: Recent Developments and Current Trends

  • Defensive Strategies: Patent Litigation


Sharp Decline in US Patent Litigation so far in 2014 – IPWatchdog.com | Patents & Patent Law. Looking at the year to year figures, there’s been a significant drop in lawsuits filed. Comparing the first two months of 2013 to  2014, there has been a drop of 25% for the same period. Some speculate the threat of new patent legislation making its way through Congress is having an impact. Former PTO Director, now Executive Director of AIPLA, Q. Todd Dickenson, testified to Congress in December 2013 that the post-grant proceedings introduced in the US with enactment of the AIA may be working to reduce the number of lower quality patents through lower-cost administrative procedures for challenging issued patents. The new data from Lex Machina supports the conclusion reached by the AIPLA that it is simply too early to know what the overall impact of the AIA will be.

The Benefits of a Provisional Patent Application – IPWatchdog.com | Patents & Patent Law.

Director’s Forum: A Blog from USPTO’s Leadership. Satellite offices hit by funds sequestration.

What is a Patent? Understanding Patents and Patent Law 101 | IPWatchdog.com | Patents & Patent Law. This extremely helpful guide will give you the basics, and useful links to more details. Sometimes it’s great to go back to the basics…

USPTO Publishes Final Rules and Guidelines Governing First-Inventor-to-File | IPWatchdog.com | Patents & Patent Law. Pursuant to the AIA, the USPTO published thee final rules of practice implementing the first-inventor-to-file provisions, which become effective March 16, 2013. Other AIA related rules were published today as well, including, as ipwatchdog reports, “the agency’s interpretation of how the first-inventor-to-file provision alters novelty and obviousness determinations for an invention claimed in a patent application.”

University Tech Licensing Has Substantial Impact on Economy | IPWatchdog.com | Patents & Patent Law. The Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM), a nonprofit association of academic technology transfer professionals, has publishes an annual survey of North American universities, hospitals and research institutions looking at a number of data points that reveal licensing activity. The information gathered includes the number of patents, the number of invention disclosures, the number of startups created and the amount of licensing income received.  AUTM U.S. Licensing Activity Survey: FY2011, and the AUTM Canadian Licensing Activity Survey: FY2011, published Dec. 10. This is a good opportunity to mention the invaluable role of AUTM. Check out their website and note their educational webcasts – several good for the IP basics and much more.

Kappos, Prost, Armitage and Dickinson Discuss AIA at AIPLA | IPWatchdog.com | Patents & Patent Law.