Overcoming Obviousness Rejections

Introduction This article addresses overcoming obviousness rejections.  This is sometimes referenced as a Section 103 rejection.  Rejections under 35 U.S.C. 103 are the most common basis for an examiner refusing to allow issuance of a patent.  Section 103 states that an improvement or modification that would be obvious to a hypothetical person of ordinary skill…

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Post Patent Grant Challenge

INTRODUCTION: After you have achieved the award of a patent, you may still be subject to challenge from competitors.  You may face a post patent grant challenge.  Part of the America Invents Act or AIA the USPTO established a procedure called a Post Grant Review.  The procedure gives third parties up to 9 months after the grant of…

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Patent Goulash For Engineers

INTRODUCTION: I wrote an article in October 2019 for mechanical engineers (and others) warning that the Section 101 morass, i.e., Patent Goulash, was not limited to computer software business methods or medical diagnostic procedures.  The long twisted arm of unpatentable “natural law” and “abstract ideas” was extending to patent applications for improved mechanical structures.  See Mechanical Engineering and…

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“Groundbreaking” But Not Patentable?

INTRODUCTION: It is clear abstract ideas are not patentable. However the topic is much more complex. I have written a number of articles regarding the fog shrouded abyss related to patenting computer business methods and medical diagnostic procedures.  The Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (commonly known as the “Federal Circuit”) continue to…

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Avoiding the “Un-patentable Abstract Idea”

INTRODUCTION: I have written many times of the ambiguity created by the courts in the Alice and Mayo decisions regarding what is patentable subject matter.  I am today suggesting a method of “avoiding the un-patentable abstract idea”. What I am referring to is the rejection of patentable innovations on the basis that the patent is merely claiming an abstract idea.  An abstract idea…

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When is Computer Software Patentable?

Software is patentable when and if it can meet the following two part test: Does the claim recite (expressly state or inherently infer) that the software pertains to a method of organizing human activity (including satisfying legal obligations), mathematical formulas or mental processes?  If no, then the software claim is patent eligible.  If yes, then go to the second part…

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Patenting Medical Devices

Introduction This article is meant to be read in conjunction with my article Patentability Swamp.  In this prior article, I have discussed the newest USPTO Guidelines (October 17, 2019) pertaining to patenting matters that may incorporate patent ineligible material under 35 USC Section 101, i.e., natural law, natural products, natural phenomena or abstract ideas.  I have discussed the…

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Patentability Swamp

Introduction I have recently posted a blog of mechanical device patents becoming ensnared in the patentability swamp.  The swamp is the ineligibility of patenting “natural laws”, “natural phenomena” and “abstract ideas”.  This has followed the adverse rulings for patenting medical procedures and business methods. There has been another shift in the ground underlying this swamp.  Further guidance was issued from the USPTO…

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Mechanical Engineering Patents and Validity Goulash

Introduction If you thought that issues of natural law and abstract ideas were invalidating only medical device and treatment patents, think again.  The fog of natural law/natural phenomena/abstract ideas is descending upon “nuts and bolts” mechanical engineering.  It is no longer safe to pursue patent protection for vibration dampened drive shafts without encountering “validity goulash”.   Discussion Again…

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Patenting Medical Diagnostic Procedures

Introduction This article is a follow on to my July 19, 2019 post entitled Patenting Medical Devices and Procedures.  It may be useful to review this earlier blog post.  What prompts this new post is the pending petition of Athena Diagnostics Inc. regarding the invalidation of its patent for detecting a neurological disorder (Myasthenia gravis).  I discussed this case, Athena…

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