Congress, in Section 34 of the America Invents Act, requires the Government Accountability Office (GAO), in consultation with the USPTO, to conduct a study into the consequences of patent litigation by non-practicing entities or patent assertion entities.
The AIA provides six topics the study should address: 1) the volume of litigation regarding patents over the twenty-year period leading up to the enactment of the AIA; 2) the volume of those cases that are found to be without merit after judicial review; 3) the impacts of patent litigation on the time required to resolve patent claims; 4) the estimated costs to the patent holders, licensors, licensees, and inventors for litigation and the costs for users of alternative innovations; 5) the economic impact of patent litigation on the United States economy; and 6) the benefit to commerce supplied by entities that prosecute patent litigation.
Upcoming Events/Key Dates
This report must be submitted to Congress by September 16, 2012. It is expected that the USPTO will provide a time before September 16 in which comments may be submitted for consideration regarding this topic.