Patent News

Sep. 29, 2017

Heritage Foundation: Report – Key Patent Reforms Needed to Spur U.S. Innovation, by Alden Abbott

This report originally appeared on the Heritage Foundation website on September 29, 2017.

Patent rights have long been a bulwark of American economic growth and innovation. Unfortunately, over the past decade, the U.S. patent system has slipped from number one to number 10 in the world. U.S. Supreme Court decisions have weakened American patents by reading into the Patent Act new judicial limitations on eligibility and enforcement, threatening innovation in computer and life sciences. A constitutionally dubious administrative review panel has eliminated large numbers of new patents and cast a cloud over the value of recently issued patents. Antitrust enforcers have also raised new legal uncertainty about the exercise of patent rights through licensing. Congress should pass legislation to eliminate inappropriate judge-made limitations on patentability and patent enforceability, and the administrative review panel should be curbed or eliminated. The Trump Administration should act aggressively to restore respect for American patent rights domestically and internationally and to eliminate unwarranted antitrust threats to patents.