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Update: Debt Ceiling Debate Stalls Patent Reform in the U.S. Senate

patent reformAs noted in a previous posting, on June 23, 2011, the America Invents Act (H.R. 1249) passed the U.S. House of Representatives. The U.S. Senate approved a similar bill in March (S. 23).  However, since the bills were not identical, the issue of patent reform must go before the U.S. Senate again. But what are the chances of that happening anytime soon? 

With political leaders in the midst of a debt ceiling crisis, the issue of patent reform has taken a back seat.  In blunt terms, all of Washington’s focus is currently directed squarely at the debt ceiling issue.  In the unlikely event that you have not heard, Congress has until August 2, 2011 to raise the debt ceiling limit to allow additional borrowing. Since it appears that the debt ceiling negotiations will continue until at least August 2, 2011, only a few days will remain before the August Congressional recess.

Therefore, it is likely that the Senate will not take up the America Invents Act until it returns from recess in September – at the earliest. However, stay tuned for further developments. 

Categories: Intellectual Property, Patents

Photo of Nicholas M. Oertel

focuses his practice in the areas of Michigan non-property tax disputes, business entity selection, corporate transactions, and information technology.

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