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US Patent Office Sued For Requiring Human Inventor on Patent Applications

By Kirk M. Hartung

On August 6, 2020, Stephen Thaler sued the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, case number 1:20-cv-00903 for requiring him to name a natural person as the inventor on two patent applications which he filed relating to a light beacon and a […]

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Federal Circuit Reinstates Patent Claims Previously Found Obvious by Patent Trial and Appeal Board

By Julie L. Spieker

On July 31, 2020, in the precedential opinion Alacritech, Inc. v. Intel Corp., the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (hereinafter the “Federal Circuit”) reinstated three claims of Alacritech’s patent, holding that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (hereinafter the “Board”) did not adequately support its finding that the asserted prior art […]

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Bayh-Dole Act Turns 40

By Kirk M. Hartung

The Patent and Trademark Law Amendments Act, commonly known as the Bayh-Dole Act, was passed by Congress in 1980.  The primary sponsors were Senators Birch Bayh (D. Indiana) and Senator Robert Dole (R. Kansas).  This act relates to research funded by the federal government.  Prior to passage of the Act, inventions developed with federal dollars […]

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A New Standard for Multicolored Marks

By Tina G. Yin Sowatzke, Pharm.D.

Whether it is a light blue jewelry box, or a red sole on a high-heel shoe, certain colors allow consumers to immediately associate that color with a specific brand or product. However, whether a color can be trademarked is not simply black and white. As demonstrated by a long and complex history of case law […]

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A New Look for MVS

By Richard Marsolais

McKee, Voorhees & Sease, PLC is excited to introduce a fresh new look for our firm that highlights a new logo, the use of a modern and vibrant color scheme, updated firm materials and a new website. “The new branding reflects the unparalleled intellectual property expertise, professionalism, and exceptional client service that has been the […]

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MVS Announces the Retirement of Patricia A. Sweeney

By Blog Staff

Heidi S. Nebel, Managing Member of McKee, Voorhees & Sease, PLC announced that long-time attorney, Patricia A. Sweeney, will be retiring from the firm effective December 31, 2020. Pat has the distinction of being the first female patent attorney in Iowa, beginning her practice at MVS in 1985. She then joined Pioneer Hi-Bred International as […]

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Patent Analytics Provider Tracks “Examiners Who Procrastinate”

By Gregory Lars Gunnerson

Patent Analytics Provider Juristat blogged on May 28, 2020 that Juristat is capable of tracking procrastination habits of examiners at the USPTO. To better understand how examiners procrastinate and why some would choose to or choose to avoid doing so requires some background knowledge of how examiners are internally evaluated by the USPTO. Examiner performance is evaluated […]

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USPTO Publishes Revised Ninth Edition of the MPEP

By Oliver P. Couture, Ph.D.

In June, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published the newest revisions to the Ninth Edition of the Manuel of Patent Examination Procedure (MPEP). The revisions update the MPEP to include all the changes that became effective as of October 2019. This revision updates every section of the MPEP, except for Chapters 1100 […]

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Generic.com: SCOTUS Rules that Addition of Top-Level Domain to Generic Term Can Create Protectable Trademark

By Nicholas J. Krob

When the United States Supreme Court granted certiorari in U.S. Patent and Trademark Office v. Booking.com back in November, the question was whether a generic term such as “booking” could constitute a protectable trademark when accompanied by “.com.” In an 8-1 decision issued last week, the Court has answered this question with a resounding “yes.” The case before the Court […]

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USPTO Introduces Fast-Track Appeals Pilot Program

On Thursday, July 2, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will begin to accept petitions for expedited resolution of ex parte appeals at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). The petitions will cost $400 and will be made possible under a program known as the “Fast-Track Appeals Pilot Program”. Petition grants for […]

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