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On April 1, the US Patent and Trademark Office published a new set of rules for cases heard before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. WIPR reviews the changes and what they may mean for lawyers.
In the Western world, the first day of the fourth month is usually reserved for tall stories and childish pranks.
But there was no April Fools’ Day fun from the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) this year. On April 1, US practitioners woke up to the news that their roles were about to change thanks to new rules centring on Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) cases.
Published in the Federal Register, the new rules stemmed from changes first proposed by the USPTO in August last year and are related to inter partes reviews (IPRs), post-grant reviews (PGRs) and covered business method reviews.
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