July 31, 2012
On July 26, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) posted a set of proposed rules to implement the "first to file" provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA). These AIA provisions convert the U.S. patent system from a “first to invent” system to a "first to file" system, effective March 16, 2013. The AIA also alters the scope of available prior art that the USPTO may apply against a claimed invention.
The USPTO will accept public written comments on the rules through October 5, 2012. The USPTO also plans to discuss the proposed rules and guidance at a series of “roadshows” scheduled to take place in eight cities across the U.S. in September of this year.
Fitch Even attorneys are monitoring the progress of the proposed rules and will post further comments on these rules once they are adopted