Edited by Daniel R. Cahoy and Lynda J. Oswald
Chapter 3: The America Invents Act, patent priority, and supplemental examination
Patent reform in the United States has been long overdue. Ignored decades ago as an obscure backwater of the law, the advancement of patent law was not seen as an important initiative. As recently as the late 1970s, patent law was perceived as weak, ineffective and unable to keep pace with rapid technological changes (Rooklidge & Barker, 2009, p. 154). Until the previous year, the most recent significant substantive amendment by Congress was the Patent Act of 1952 (Patent Act, 1952). That perception has now fully matured into a rich and robust understanding of the value of intellectual assets. The competitive advantage of new technological innovations relies heavily on the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights. Patent law enforcement was no longer a technicality left to lawyer-scientists, but developed into a high-stakes game of corporate survival.
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