Rumors are now circulating that the Patent Reform Act (S. 1145
), sponsored by Senator Pat Leahy (D-VT), could be brought to the Senate floor at any time. Although we have no way of knowing exactly when that will be, Senators still need your calls telling them to oppose this disastrous attack on America's inventors! The House of Representatives passed
its version of the bill (H.R. 1908
) back on September 7, 2007. Although the Senate has made a few changes, the bill is still bad.
Major Problems with the so-called "Patent Reform":
- Mandates that details of submitted inventions must be published on the internet 18 months after the date of application, regardless of whether a patent has been granted or not. This will make it easy for "patent pirates" to steal the invention, then file for their own patent, while the original inventor will have no legal right to protect his or her creation.
- Changes the standard of approval from first-to-invent to first-to-file a patent application. This makes it easier for big companies with armies of lawyers to file their patents before the small, independent inventor toiling away in his garage.
- Institutes "post-grant review." This process would make it easier for patent infringers to invalidate a patent anytime after it is issued.
- Lowers the damages that infringers would have to pay for stealing patented inventions and increases litigation costs. This makes it easier for large high-tech firms to battle independent inventors in court since the cost to argue increases but the restitution to the original inventor will be less.
It is important to be aware that the Senate bill has only 9 cosponors, but SIX of them are Republicans. They are as follows:
- Bennett -UT
- Craig - ID
- Crapo -ID
- Cornyn - TX
- Hatch -UT
- Smith - OR
Call and email your Senators and tell them to vote NO on the phony Patent "Reform" bill. Our U.S. patent
system is now the best in the world, and we must protect the constitutional rights of U.S. inventors.
Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121