Bill Targeting Unfair Patent Suits Introduced In Senate
November 19, 2013 at 4:16 AM (PT)
A new bill to reform the patent process and discourage patent trolls has been introduced in the Senate.
S. 1720, the Patent Transparency and Improvements Act , sponsored by Sens. PATRICK LEAHY (D-VT), MIKE LEE (R-UT), and SHELDON WHITEHOUSE (D-RI), would require patent holders to disclose their true beneficial owners and transfers of interest, and would protect customers who get sued by patent holders by staying their cases while the cases against the primary defendant (the manufacturer) are litigated, with the proviso that the customers agree to be bound by the decision in the primary case. It also targets the "worst of the worst" trolls by declaring the sending of misleading or fraudulent demand letters a bad faith practice that may be targeted by the FTC.
NAB Pres./CEO GORDON SMITH said that his organization "thanks Chairman LEAHY and Senators LEE and WHITEHOUSE for their leadership in introducing the Patent Transparency and Improvements Act, legislation designed to combat 'patent trolls' that are a drain on both the U.S. economy and the broadcast industry. This legislation deters those entities that acquire patents primarily as a litigation tool while protecting the true innovators who keep our economy moving forward. We look forward to working with these lawmakers and other patent reform advocates on legislation that supports a sensible patent system."