Patent controversies are no longer solely the province of technology companies and patent trolls. Many businesses, big and small alike, have recognized the tremendous value that patents deliver and have incorporated patent registration and enforcement into their revenue-generating strategies. While disputes between patent owners and challengers historically have been resolved in federal court, that framework has shifted in recent years with the passage of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA), among other changes to the patent system, the AIA allowed the establishment of alternative mechanisms within the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to resolve patent validity disputes. Those PTO mechanisms have increasingly become the battleground for contesting patent validity challenges as more parties shift their disputes away from federal court.
This article addresses the importance of the AIA and the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) in a business’s intellectual property strategy.