MONTHLY INSIGHTS

Outbreak of Coronavirus: 
Impact on proceedings before the European Patent Office and the EPC member states

As of today, February 28, no specific information relating to the worldwide outbreak of the Coronavirus has been issued by the European Patent Office (EPO). Nevertheless and because of this, while expressing solidarity with all people involved and wishing all our readers health, we would like to remind applicants, proprietors and opponents of European patents that some law provisions on time limits may be particularly useful for any party impacted by the Coronavirus outbreak.

Enforcing Patents The Amazon Way

For years, patent owners have struggled with what to do about infringers on Amazon and other online marketplaces. The traditional answer has been to get an order from a court or other tribunal that has determined infringement and to present a copy of that order to the online marketplace. For many, however, engaging in expensive protracted litigation in district court or in the International Trade Commission to get such an order may not be an option for a variety of reasons, including, most often, budget.
Amazon now has an answer - the Utility Patent Neutral Evaluation Program, referred to as the "UPNE" or as the "Patent Evaluation Program."  
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U.S. Patent Will Expire 44 Years After Earliest Effective Filing Date Due to U.S. Army Secrecy Order

The U.S. Government uses secrecy orders to protect national security by preventing certain patent applications from being published, granted, or otherwise available to the public. However, at least 21 companies have been sued for alleged infringement of a pre-TRIPs U.S. patent for which grant was delayed by 27 years due to a secrecy order. In what one hopes is an extraordinarily unusual situation, the patent will expire 44 years after its earliest effective filing date. Myriad special problems are likely to arise in the course of this litigation campaign, and special equitable defenses may be raised, with uncertain outcomes.
The Impact of Brexit on Patents in Europe 

Shortly after the historic Brexit referendum on June 26, 2016, Theresa May, the Prime Minister at the time, said "Brexit means Brexit". As of January 31, 2020, at midnight, the United Kingdom left the European Union (EU): what does Brexit mean for Patents in Europe?
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USPTO No Longer Accepting Requests to Participate in the IP5 PCT Collaborative Search and Examination Pilot Program

In early January 2020, the United States Patent and Trademark Office announced that it has reached the total number of applications that can be accepted for the IP5 Offices' Patent   Cooperation Treaty Collaborative Search and Examination pilot program. As a result, the USPTO   ceased accepting new international applications for the pilot program.    READ MORE 

DIVERSITY IN IP & TECHNOLOGY

Osha Liang is frequently recognized for advocating diversity in IP, innovation and technology (see previous articles  here and here).  It was a pleasure to collaborate at a number of events this month which highlighted inclusion in these fields. 
Women in IP: A Look into Diversity & Inventorship

Osha Liang Partner Carlyn Burton joined an all-female panel during a State Bar of Texas event for a discussion on "Women in IP." Former Shark Tank contestant,  Lydia Evans (o wner of SW&G Essentials) was a guest speaker on the panel. Read More

Women in Tech
Osha Liang was proud to be one of the corporate sponsors at Compudopt's first "Women in Tech" event held on February 8th. Hosted at Compudopt's Houston headquarters, this interactive forum provided a wonderful learning experience for local students.  Read More
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Girls Are First 
Texas Tech Challenge Event

Osha Liang Patent Agent Dr. Michael Maldei coaches an all-girl r obotics group wh ich is comprised of middle-school students. Osha Liang was delighted to sponsor their participation at the recent First Tech Challenge Central Texas Regional Championship. Read More

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