Understanding Secret Commercial Use and the Patent Filing Grace Period

Understanding Secret Commercial Use and the Patent Filing Grace Period By Elliott Chen An inventor created a piece of proprietary software that is used to design a commercial product. The inventor initially decided to keep the proprietary software a trade secret, but then decides to file a patent application for the software after sales of the commercial product started to …

Acceleration of Patent Examination – Special or Prioritized Examination

Acceleration of Patent Examination – Special or Prioritized Examination by Dave Ream Federal Rule 37 CFR 1.102 outlines the general process for advancement of patent examination in the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, and MPEP 708.02, 708.02(a) and 708.02(b) detail specific requirements and processes for advancement or acceleration of patent examination. As detailed in MPEP 708.02+, there are two basic …

The Odd Provisional as Prior Art

The Odd Provisional as Prior Art by Dan Stanger In general, the effective filing date for invention priority of a patent or patent application publication is that of the earliest application to which benefit is claimed that satisfies the written description and enablement requirements of 35 U.S.C. § 112(a). Similarly, a patent or published application generally may be prior art …

Hopeful Prospects for Clarity in Section 101 of the Patent Act

Hopeful Prospects for Clarity in Section 101 of the Patent Act by Nabil Abdalla Since the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank Intl, USPTO examiners, inventors, and patent practitioners, alike, have been navigating through a “sometimes murky” understanding of subject matter eligibility. In an attempt to provide clarity and predictability, the USPTO has released …