Accelerating Innovation for New Inventors: Inside the First-Time Filer Expedited Patent Pilot Program

Most inventors can attest to the surprise they felt upon learning that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) likely will not respond to their first patent application for a couple of years after filing. To address this concern, in 2023, the USPTO introduced the First-Time Filer Expedited Examination Pilot Program, which was designed …

Getting Off on the Wrong Foot: How Marketing Strategies Can Backfire

The European Court of Justice affirmed an earlier decision of the European Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) in a case where Puma was attempting to gain a European Union (EU) Community Design on its “Puma Creeper Shoe.” On March 6, 2024, the EU Court struck down the validity of Puma’s registered EU design, based on a …

Double Patenting in Canada

Similar to other jurisdictions, a patent in Canada is granted for one invention only. Accordingly, in instances where multiple inventions are claimed in a single application, it may be necessary to parse out the inventions and protect them by filing divisional applications. However, care must be taken to avoid potential double patenting issues. The Supreme …

A Seller’s Guide to Navigating Intellectual Property Law on Amazon

A basic understanding of Intellectual Property (IP) law is essential to managing an Amazon storefront, as IP issues can be a minefield for the uninformed. Amazon sellers must understand the major forms of intellectual property –patents, trademarks, and copyrights–and the common pitfalls associated with each form to avoid infringement allegations, storefront disruptions or closures, and …

Canadian Patent Infringement: The Role of Non-Infringing Options in Profit Calculations and the Availability of Springboard Profits

The Supreme Court of Canada recently clarified the role of non-infringing options as well as springboard profits when calculating profits in patent infringement cases. In Nova Chemicals Corp v Dow Chemical Co, 2022 SCC 43 (“Nova”), the Supreme Court reviewed a trial court’s calculation of the profits gained by Nova Chemicals from infringing Dow Chemical’s …

New USPTO Fee Schedule Reduces Costs for PCT Patent Filings and Small and Micro Entities

The enactment of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023 includes the Unleashing American Innovators Act of 2022 (UAIA), directed toward increasing innovation of small businesses and inventors in America. Congress is using the UAIA to reduce barriers to patent system entry, such as the costs associated with filing and prosecuting patent applications as well as maintaining …

PROTECTING INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY THROUGHOUT THE MANUFACTURING PROCESS

Many companies, including U.S. companies, find manufacturing abroad attractive because of its affordable costs, capacity, and distribution networks. Typically discussions or negotiations with a foreign manufacturer will concern the type of product to be produced, which often involves providing the manufacturer with sufficient detail to enable the manufacturer to provide a proposal. These seemingly harmless …

Coming to Canadian Patents on October 3, 2022: Excess Claims and Continued Examination Fees

The Canadian government has now announced that October 3, 2022, is the date on which significant changes to the Canadian Patent Rules, which we had previously reported, will come into force. The changes will streamline examination procedures by instituting excess claims fees, by instituting a procedure for requesting continued examination, and by introducing conditional notices …

Freedom to Operate Opinions: What Are They, and Why Are They Important?

What is a freedom to operate opinion, and why is it important? A freedom to operate opinion (FTO) is a legal opinion from a qualified intellectual property attorney that concludes a proposed commercial product or process may be made, used, sold, or offered for sale without infringing another party’s intellectual property rights. Although there is …