Sunday, October 16, 2011

Learning the Rules from One Patent Act Is Hard Enough
Learning Two Sucks the Big One

In the middle of the semester when I'm taking a course in patent law, Congress changes the patent laws. They call the new law "America Invents Act (AIA)." I won't give a summary of the new law. I haven't digested the new provisions. Besides, there are much better authorities on patent law than a second year law student. I hope to hell no one comes to this blog seeking legal advice or education.

My initial reaction to the new law was "Is this good or bad for patent attorneys?" I have a hunch this may create more work for patent attorneys, so this could be a plus for people in this field.

However, the law may be a pain in the ass because patent attorneys for the next 15 years or so will have to know 2 sets of patent laws: the old 1952 Act and AIA. The old patent laws don't simply vanish. The unexpired patents granted before passage of the AIA will follow the old patent laws. The new patents passed after passage of the AIA (or at least those passed 2 years from now), will follow the new rules.

I keep telling myself this is a good thing.

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