Patent Reform Principles
TechNet will continue to advocate for patent quality and patent reform legislation. TechNet supports a patent system that will level the playing field to promote innovation in all sectors of the economy and minimize frivolous litigation. TechNet also supports the following principles:
- Patents are the key drivers of our innovation economy. They support the creation of new and innovative products and services, which, in turn, create new jobs. TechNet values the incentives of the patent system and recognizes that predatory litigation threatens to undermine this precious resource.
- With technologies evolving more rapidly than ever, TechNet believes federal legislation must ensure our patent system promotes an environment where innovation can flourish.
- High-quality patents promote innovation. Low-quality patents hinder innovation by fueling abusive litigation. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) must continue to develop and implement patent examination rules, procedures, and guidance to promote the issuance of high-quality patents that provide clear public notice of claim scope to downstream innovators and implementers.
- The PTO needs adequate and stable funding to fulfill its mission. Congress should ensure that the PTO retains flexibility to set appropriate user fees and that all user fees stay with the agency to fund its operations.
- The Inter Partes Review (IPR) program is a vital tool for improving patent quality and reducing abusive litigation. IPRs provide for fair and efficient administrative review of patents of questionable validity, weeding bad patents out of the system more quickly and at far lower cost than through district court litigation. Congress and the PTO should resist any efforts to undermine the program.
- Any statutory patent reform should address key drivers of litigation abuse, including vague and unsupported infringement allegations, asymmetric discovery burdens, and forum shopping.