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Predictions and Thoughts for 2019

Looking Forward: Predictions and Thoughts for 2019

Every December we ask a panel of business specialists to determine the most important moments in IP for the earlier yr, and likewise ask them for his or her needs for the brand new yr. Annually I additionally try and do comparable article on predictions for the yr forward, however I haven’t all the time been capable of finding sufficient business insiders prepared to exit on a limb and truly make predictions. Beginning final yr I took a barely totally different strategy. I requested the specialists to determine particular subjects of curiosity to observe because the yr unfolds. That query not solely produced an incredible response, however it additionally provoked a couple of specialists to supply predictions. So with that in thoughts one other collection was born, and continues this yr with Predictions and Ideas for 2019.

Provided that a number of business insiders have been prepared to make their very own predictions, I’ll exit on a limb and make my very own predictions… First, I predict Congress will do nothing on patent reform in 2019. With a divided Congress and a Home of Representatives that would properly spent valuable legislative time on impeachment and different investigations, mental property issues possible gained’t register even a blip on the general public radar contained in the beltway. Second, I predict there might be a lot effort behind the scenes on Capitol Hill to place numerous legislative fixes to 35 U.S.C. 101 in order that when consideration does flip to patent eligibility the bottom work might be laid and far of the heavy lifting already executed. So, should you assume you’ll be able to sit out 2019 as a result of nothing is occurring you’d be incorrect. People who need to affect the subsequent spherical of patent reform have already been working and by the point it’s rolled out publicly it is going to be too late. Third, I predict the USA Patent and Trademark Workplace will outline the time period “summary concept”. That is hardly going out on a limb since Director Iancu has all however promised simply that in a speech given at Georgetown on November 26, 2018. Because the courts refuse to outline the time period the USPTO will intently determine solely these improvements that the Supreme Courtroom has recognized as representing an “summary concept” and intently outline the time period to imply these issues and solely these issues are summary concepts, with all the things else within the pc carried out universe not being directed to an summary concept and, subsequently, patent eligible beneath Step 2A of the Alice/Mayo framework.

Now, with out additional ado, the ideas and predictions of our esteemed panel.



Roberta Romano-Götsch
Chief Working Officer
European Patent Workplace (EPO)

To begin with, we’ve got three new Vice Presidents taking over their posts on the EPO in January 2019. Their work will represent a serious contribution to the event of the patent system each internationally and at European degree.

Second, we hope that there will probably be additional progresson patent reform in Europe with larger readability on the standing of the Unitary Patent and Unified Patent Courtroom. This new path to patent safety in Europe will definitely be of curiosity to US companies, too, and we hope that the long-awaited reform will lastly come to fly.

And third, a phrase on Brexit: It’s value recalling that no matter Brexit state of affairs will apply, it won’t have an effect on the UK’s membership of the European Patent Organisation. We aren’t an EU company, however an unbiased, intergovernmental establishment. Which means we’ll proceed to grant European patents which are legitimate within the UK, and British companies can proceed to cowl Europe by way of the EPO route as earlier than.

Roberta Romano-Götsch is the Chief Working Officer of Mobility and Mechatronics on the European Patent Workplace (EPO). As Chief Working Officer of one of many three technical areas on the EPO, Ms. Romano-Götsch has duty for main 1,600 patent examiners, managers and administrative employees members in Munich and The Hague. Along with main Mobility and Mechatronics, she can also be chair of the EPO’s Operational High quality Committee.


Bob Stoll
Companion, Drinker Biddle

Presidential investigations and controversial points in a divided Congress will eat the time from the Congressional calendar this yr.  And the Supreme Courtroom will likewise be engaged in social considerations and assertions of government privilege for a lot of their time, so I don’t anticipate vital motion on the legislative or judicial entrance on IP this yr.  I do consider we’ll see Director Iancu proceed to make use of rule-making to enhance processes on the USPTO, however his talents there are already restricted by the courts and the statutes.

That isn’t to say nothing might be occurring on IP throughout 2019.  I consider it is going to be a constructing yr!

I feel the discussions surrounding patent material eligibility will deepen and we’ll doubtless see extra articles within the main-stream press decrying the hurt to the financial system the “Alice check” has conferred on our home rising applied sciences.  We may even see extra 101 legislative language that addresses considerations however meets the wants of those that resist the present language.  On the similar time, I feel we’ll see savvy patent filers reevaluate their methods.  Revolutionary corporations will extra readily use commerce secrets and techniques to guard these areas the place patent safety is presently questionable.  In some areas, diagnostic strategies and algorithms could also be candidates for commerce secret safety.   Additionally, as fashions change, we may even see a wider embrace of open-source software program.

As filings associated to synthetic intelligence, cyber safety, 5G-related improvements, personalised drugs, cloud computing, processes manipulating huge knowledge and autonomous automobiles explode we might interact in discussions as as to if the present system adequately stimulates innovation in these areas or whether or not a sui generic proper must be investigated to guard a few of them.

In any occasion, I feel it is going to be a really fascinating yr in IP the place we examine new concepts to stimulate innovation.

Robert L. Stoll has greater than 40 years of expertise in mental property prosecution. Bob retired from the USPTO as Commissioner for Patents on the finish of 2011 after a distinguished 34-year authorities profession. Bob serves as an skilled on patent issues, and is called an issue solver for instances with peculiar points and issues. He’s now Co-Chair of the Drinker Biddle Mental Property Group, and a member of the Patent Masters School.


Stephen Kunin
Companion, Maier & Maier

Whereas I’m pessimistic that we’ll see a lot motion in Congress in 2019 on patent reform and little progress within the space of substantive patent regulation harmonization, I’m hopeful that the U.S. will proceed to work with its buying and selling companions to reinforce IPR safety globally.  I don’t see a lot in the best way of latest free commerce agreements with robust IP sections in 2019 I stay hopeful that the Director shall be a robust chief in mental property discussions with different U.S. businesses and overseas governments and workplaces on international patent work sharing and enhancing the respect for and safety of mental property rights worldwide.

Stephen Kunin is at present a associate with Maier & Maier. He serves as an professional witness and marketing consultant on patent coverage, follow and process. Mr. Kunin served three many years on the USPTO, together with 10 years as Deputy Commissioner for Patent Examination Coverage. Mr. Kunin can also be a member of the Patent Masters school.


James Pooley
Patent and Commerce Secret Litigator

Having in thoughts Yogi Berra’s admonition about predicting the longer term, I’ll enterprise solely a few occasions in my wheelhouse that appear possible based mostly on details that we all know.

First: Congress will make clear and strengthen the extraterritoriality provisions of the Defend Commerce Secrets and techniques Act, to make sure home cures for overseas misappropriation of U.S. commerce secret belongings.

Second: Within the wake of the extensively panned E.J. Brooks determination limiting the sorts of damages that may be recovered for commerce secret misappropriation, New York, the one state and not using a model of the Uniform Commerce Secrets and techniques Act, will lastly enact it, changing its reliance on the outmoded 1939 Restatement of Torts.

James Pooley has over 35 years expertise as a profitable Silicon Valley trial lawyer. Pooley possess deep information of patents and commerce secrets and techniques. Actually, Pooley has fairly actually written the guide on commerce secret regulation, together with his newest title “Secrets and techniques: Managing Info Belongings within the Age of Cyberespionage”. Pooley can also be a Member of the IP Corridor of Fame, inducted in 2016, and he spent 5 years serving as a diplomat and supervisor of the worldwide patent system (PCT) as Deputy Director of the World Mental Property Group.


Picture Supply: Deposit Photographs.

Gene Quinn

Gene Quinn

is a Patent Lawyer and Editor and founding father of Gene can also be a principal lecturer within the PLI Patent Bar Evaluate Course and an lawyer with Widerman Malek. Gene’s specialty is within the space of strategic patent consulting, patent software drafting and patent prosecution. He consults with attorneys dealing with peculiar procedural points on the Patent Workplace, advises buyers and executives on patent regulation modifications and pending litigation issues, and works with start-up companies all through america and all over the world, primarily coping with software program and pc associated improvements. Gene is admitted to follow regulation in New Hampshire, is a Registered Patent Lawyer and can also be admitted to apply earlier than the USA Courtroom of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. CLICK HERE to ship Gene a message.

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