Patent law protects "original inventions and processes" including
genetically engineered life forms.
Rajrathnam V P, Attorney/Advocate and IPR Consultant - email@example.com
The term "patent" originates from the Latin word patere which means
"to lay open", meaning make available for public inspection, and the term
letters patent, which originally denoted royal decrees granting exclusive rights to
certain individuals or businesses.
Patent law - a long jouney since 1474 when the Republic of Venice issued a decree
by which new and inventive devices, once they had been put into practice, had to be
communicated to the Republic in order to obtain legal protection against potential
England enacted the Statute of Monopolies in 1623 under King James I of England.
Prior to this, the crown would issue letters patent providing any person with a
"monopoly" to produce particular goods or provide particular services. The first
was granted by Henry VI in 1449 to a Flemish man a 20 year monopoly on the manufacture of
In the seventeenth century America, a few inventors were able to obtain monopolies
or patents to produce and sell their inventions. Monopolies were granted by petitioning a
The Patent Commission of the U.S. was created in 1790.
A patent is a set of exclusive rights granted by a state to a person for a fixed
period of time in exchange for the regulated, public disclosure of certain details of a
device, method, process or composition of matter (substance) (known as an invention) which
is new, inventive, and useful or industrially applicable.
The exclusive right granted a patentee is the right to prevent others from making, using,
selling, offering to sell or importing the claimed invention.
Patents are issued for four types of inventions such as devices, products,
materials, and methods. An invention must be unique and useful for it to be patented.
Patent provides the right to exclude others from making, using, selling, offering
for sale, or importing the patented invention for the term of the patent. A patent is, in
effect, a limited property right that the government offers to inventors in exchange for
their agreement to share the details of their inventions with the public.
In order to obtain a patent, an applicant must provide a written description of
his or her invention in sufficient detail for a person skilled in the art to make and use
the invention. This written description is provided in what is known as the patent
specification, which often is accompanied by figures that show how the invention is made
and how it operates. In addition, at the end of the specification, the applicant must
provide the patent office with one or more claims that distinctly point out what the
applicant regards as his or her invention. A claim, unlike the body of the specification,
is not a detailed description of the invention, but a succinct series of words designed to
provide the public with notice of precisely what the patent owner has a right to exclude
others from making, using, or selling. Claims are often analogized to a deed or other
instrument that, in the context of real property, sets the metes and bounds of an owner's
right to exclude. It is the claims that define what a patent covers or does not cover. A
single patent may contain numerous claims, each of which is regarded as a distinct
The grant of patent gives an inventor the right to exclude others from exploiting
or making capital out of the invention for a limited period of time.
The philosophy behind the patent system is to encourage inventions by promoting
their protection and helping the inventor capitalize.
Patents are enforced through civil lawsuits. Typically, the patent owner will seek
monetary compensation for past infringement, and will seek an injunction prohibiting the
defendant from engaging in future acts of infringement.
An important limitation on the ability of a patent owner to successfully assert his or her
patent in civil litigation is the accused infringer's right to challenge the validity of
that patent. Civil courts hearing patent cases can and often do declare patents invalid.
The grounds on which a patent can be found invalid are set out in the relevent patent
legislation and vary between countries. Often, the grounds are a sub-set of the
requirements for patentability in the relevant country.
The vast majority of patent rights, however, are not determined through litigation, but
are resolved privately through patent licensing. Patent licensing agreements are
effectively contracts in which the patent owner (the licensor) agrees not to sue the
licensee for infringement of the licensor's patent rights.
Justifications for granting patents:
Patents facilitate and encourage disclosure of innovations into the public domain for the
common good. Awarding patents generally makes the details of new technology publicly
available, for exploitation by anyone after patent protection ends, or for further
improvement by other inventors (who may in turn patent these improvements). Furthermore,
when a patent's term has
expired, the public record ensures that the patentee's idea is not lost to humanity.
Patents incentivize economically efficient research and development. Without patent
protection, corporations would be much more conservative about the R&D investments
they made, as third parties would be free to exploit any developments. This is more like
the basic idea underlying traditional property rights: why build a house if another person
could freely occupy it?
Patent rights create an incentive for companies to develop workarounds to patented
inventions, thereby creating improved or alternative technologies that might not otherwise
have been developed.
Books On Patent Laws:
And the Federal Circuit (Hardcover) 7th edition by Robert L. Harmon
The most complete commentary available on the state of patent law.
In your office and in the courtroomyou can find analysis of every patent law
decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in this single-volume
treatise. The latest edition of Patents and the Federal Circuit contains the most
comprehensive analysis of Federal Circuit patent cases through 2004.
This monumental reference deals with both the high profile cases and the
"uncelebrated decisions" that tend to slip under the radar, and fits them all
into an analytical framework that reveals their true significance. Patents and the Federal
Circuit addresses ever-changing issues and developments in substantive patent law,
infringement litigation, and procedure. The author distills the opinions issued by the
primary source of governing law on patents, giving you convenient, one-source access to
controlling case law. The material is organized in a way that is intuitively familiar to
patent lawyers, so they can access the information they need quickly and easily.
The Seventh Edition of Patents and the Federal Circuit covers all Federal Circuit patent
opinions reported by BNA through United States Patents Quarterly (Second), Volume 71, and
any other important Federal Circuit decisions handed down through the end of the year
Treatise On The Law Of Patents For Useful Inventions: As Enacted And Administered In
The United States Of America (Hardcover) Reprint edition (September 2005) by George
It Yourself (Paperback) 11th edition
by David Pressman
Say that you've come up with a really nifty idea for a gizmo that would improve the lives
of every human being on Earth and probably turn you into a gadzillionaire, too! Before you
get too far into the fantasy, you need this extremely detailed and comprehensive guide to
the process of getting a patent. This is not a small book, but it contains everything you
need to know, including a lot of things you probably don't KNOW you need to know. Very
detailed, with examples of forms you'll need, addresses and marketing advice, this is the
complete guide you'll need to navigate this complex process from square one to
From Library Journal
This is a revised and considerably enlarged edition of a book published in 1979 by
McGraw-Hill ( LJ 7/79). It is more thorough and provides better coverage of peripheral
topics (e.g, how to keep lab notebooks, marketing and licensing inventions) than Kenneth
Norris's The Inventor's Guide to Low-Cost Patenting ( LJ 7/85). Norris, however, includes
more extracts from relevant regulations and the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure. The
heart of both books is the process of acquiring a patent: searching for "prior
art," drafting claims and applications, making drawings and responding appropriately
to "office actions" of the Patent and Trademark Office. Pressman writes well and
formats the material for easy reference. Recommended for public libraries. Jack Ray,
Loyola/Notre Dame Lib., Baltimore
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.
PATENT LAW IS OBSOLETE by Anna MANCINI
Since it was developed mainly during the industrial revolution to protect material
innovations, patent law cannot be applied to "intangible industrial inventions".
Software for example is denied patentability due to its lack of materiality. Such a
justification for this denial is economic nonsense, international patent law must be
adapted to cover the emerging virtual world. This has not been done. Unsuited to modern
innovation, international patent law has reached a period of decline. This decline is due
to the fact that despite the existence of international agreements, States have now come
to ignore the framework of the patent system (for software) and sometimes to adopt new
international agreements (for semi-conductor chips). This book explains how we reached
this situation, and how and why we should urgently modernize and rebalance the
international patent system.
Patent Guidebook American Bar Association by John Pienkos
Provides a summary of basic concepts of patent law, the patent system, how patents
interrelate with other forms of inttellectual property,a nd the various purposes and uses
of the patent rights.
Inventions: Moral Restraints And Patent Law by Oliver Mills
Law For Scientists and Engineers by Avery N. Goldstein
Patent Law for Scientists and Engineers provides researchers and students with an
understanding of the aspects of patent law necessary to work with patent professionals and
enhance patent coverage. The authors have structured the text so it can be easily
integrated into a reader's research routine. Each chapter supports the issues discussed
with fact patterns that emphasize the steps necessary to protect patent rights. The book
describes actual scenarios encountered by scientists and engineers, highlighting the
protection of latent patent rights that may exist within an invention or technical
and Software Patents: Law and Practice,
by Steven W. Lundberg (Editor), Stephen C. Durant (Editor), Ann M. Mccrackin (Editor)
This focused, practical reference will help you draft, prosecute, and manage a strong
portfolio of patents in the fast-changing specialty of electronic and software patent law.
It is a strategy guide designed by practitioners for practitioners to help you deal with
todays lightning-paced technological developments, changes in PTO policy, and
pivotal court rulings.
In this step-by-step guide, more than 30 practitionershandpicked for their
experience with this challenging specialtygive you perspective and tactics,
a) guidance on tough decisions such as whether to seek patent protection at all . . . how
to search for and evaluate prior art . . . how to use trade secret and copyright law in
conjunction with your patent strategy . . . and how to draft your claims for broad yet
b) succinct, useful lessons on preparing computer-related patent applications under
Alappat, its progeny, and the PTOs examination guidelines
c) compelling insights on drafting with the appropriate scopeand the unique,
software-related aspects of the best-mode, enablement, and written-description
requirements of Section 112
d) candid practice "tips and traps" for each step of the patent prosecution
e) international survey of the statutes, regulations, and case law of more than 40
nationsplus basic global principles of patentability
plus eight representative sample patents, a timesaving practice checklist, a case table,
and an exhaustive topic index.
Complete Patent Kit (Legal Survival Guides) (Paperback) Bk&CD-Rom edition
by James Rogers
Nearly everyone is inspired by a great idea--the trick is to protect your brainchild!
Filled with valuable information, this title explains what a patent is; why you might need
one; what the difference is between patents and trademarks; how to draft specifications
and drawings, and how to work through the patent process from writing your application to
the licensing of your patent rights. However, The Complete Patent Kit does not stop there.
Going beyond just the patent process, it looks at issues concerning inventors both before
and after filing a patent application, such as:
--Invention evaluation--will it sell?
--Ownership, licensing and assignment of your patent
--Use and maintenance of your patent
With checklists for the entire process, handy reference charts for quick answers and
easy-to-use forms, this is the book for every inventor.
Pending In 24 Hours by Richard Stim, David Pressman
Ron Docie, Sr., author of The Inventor's Bible
A great resource for inventors who want to quickly, efficiently and safely protect their
Andrew Bergman, inventor of
An invaluable tool in my business of designing and licensing toy concepts. Required
reading for all inventors.
Law Essentials : A Concise Guide - by Alan L. Durham
Business has always been driven by ingenuity and innovation. Now, more than ever, with an
economy built on "knowledge work" and intangible value, developing--and
protecting--intellectual property is vital for individuals and organizations alike. This
book presents a brief but thorough survey of U.S. patent law, presented in the clearest
possible terms for nonspecialists--including scientists, engineers, business managers, and
entrepreneurs--as well as students and practitioners of patent and intellectual property
About the Author
ALAN L. DURHAM is Associate Professor of Law at the University of Alabama School of Law,
where he teaches in the areas of intellectual property, antitrust, and torts. A native of
California's Silicon Valley, he practiced law there from 1989 to 1998, primarily in the
field of high-technology patent litigation.
of Patent Law: Cases and Materials (University Casebook Series)
by Craig Allen Nard, Herbert F. Schwartz, Pauline Newman, Donald S. Chisum (Editor)
The authors use case studies, case notes, examples, and problems to illustrate points
under consideration. Recognized authorities provide expert commentary and advice, from the
viewpoint of both the attorney and the judge. Representative topics include obtaining the
patent, utility, infringement, and remedies.
Patent Law: Winning Legal Strategies for Registration, Litigation & Other Intricacies
of Patent Law in All Major Markets
by Aspatore Books Staff; aspatore.com
Patented inventions and processes are frequently exported across oceans and continents,
but the protection they receive in their home country doesn't always translate. This title
explores the intricacies of patent law in major markets around the globe. From obtaining
patent rights in Germany to fighting infringement in Singapore, authors discuss the patent
issues their clients face every day, and strategies for overcoming the biggest legal
challenges in their country. Senior Partners and Patent Attorneys in Europe, Asia, Africa,
the Americas and beyond offer legal insight on patent topics including: Registration
Requirements, Enforcement, Industry-Specific Regulations, Infringement, Examination,
Litigation, Negotiation, Piracy & Counterfeiting, Data Protection, Important
Legislation, and many more. With a wealth of sample supporting documents and legal insight
gained from firsthand experience, this book provides a comprehensive look at the future of
patent law around the world.
Of Patent Law by Roger E. Schechter, John R. Thomas
and Software Patents The
Complete Patent Kit Patents
And the Federal Circuit The
Patent Guidebook A
Treatise On The Law Of Patents Patent
It Yourself Biotechnological
Inventions: Moral Restraints And Patent Law Patent
Law For Scientists and Engineers Patent
Pending In 24 Hours Patent
Law Essentials Principles
of Patent Law International
Patent Law Principles
Of Patent Law Hornbook Series INTERNATIONAL
PATENT LAW IS OBSOLETE