It doesn't matter if you are a small technology company working your way up through the business ranks or an entity with a massive mother ship in Silicon Valley like Apple, intellectual property litigation tends to be a high-stakes game. Protecting your IP interests represents one significant challenge when you are a patent holder. On the other end of the scale is the prospect of your company facing accusations of infringement.
Obtaining a patent is one thing. Protecting the rights after assignment of a patent is another. Each are separate activities. The process in the first instance is patent prosecution. The functions associated with the second focus on defending a patent against infringement and fall under litigation, as do those associated with challenging the validity of a patent in the first place.
Computer-implemented inventions (CII), artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) are all elements of modern creative endeavor. While many talk about these tools and the possibilities they represent for the future, those who work in intellectual property law know that they are playing important roles in the world now, speeding up the pace of technological advancements.
As of the beginning of November, regulators in Europe have new guidelines for how they assess and grant requests for patents. These updates by the European Patent Office have come to be expected annually. Analysts report that the greatest changes this time around deal with computer-implemented inventions (CII) – effectively, computer software.
Is inventiveness simply the result of clever thinkers who get notions and run with them, or is it something more? While the former is clearly valuable in furthering innovation, many observers offer that the latest Nobel Prize for Economics reflects a view that we believe to be equally important. That the most valuable innovations follow from solid research and development supported by the protections provided by strong intellectual property rights law.
Time is money and the purpose of business is not to waste either commodity. Because it can cost money, courts don't like to waste time either, which is why Rule 11 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure exists.
Just because your business is in one location does not mean that all legal disputes you confront will take place in that jurisdiction. We live in a global economy and the potential of legal action can come from anywhere in the world. If a dispute reaches the stage of a suit, the venue might not be your backyard, putting you at a disadvantage. When that happens, it's important to consider hiring local counsel.
The world is now abuzz in the wake of Gov. Jerry Brown's signing of a law that sets California on a track to achieve the goal of being a fossil fuel-free state by 2045. Since taking that action, there have been calls from some quarters that China now needs to step up its game in this area. What reaction that will receive is impossible to gauge, especially in the current political and economic environment.
When you start a business, you have myriad responsibilities to manage. You need to take charge of all the basics to get your company up and running: developing a business plan, registering your company, purchasing property, hiring staff and marketing your services.
A patent is a grant by the government giving the holder the exclusive right to monetize an invention. Patents are individual grants, but many companies have whole portfolios of patents as well as other intellectual property elements such as trademarks and copyrights. They might result from direct creativity or by the acquisition of others' work.