Intellectual Property Alert Provided by K&L Gates, US
On Saturday, March 16, 2013, the “first-inventor-to-file” provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (“AIA”) go into effect.  These provisions replace the current “first-to-invent” system. In addition to various other changes, under the new system, the universe of references and activities which can be used as prior art will expand. For example, certain foreign patent applications and activities occurring in other countries that did not previously constitute prior art will become available as prior art under the new rules.
Now is a good time to start planning for the changes in March by reviewing patent portfolios and invention disclosures. As a hedge against the uncertainty associated with the new provisions, it may be worthwhile to evaluate draft applications and pending provisional applications, and to prioritize invention disclosures so that non-provisional applications can be filed before March 16, 2013, if circumstances warrant.
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