Patent law requires a robust and balanced approach, combining protection for patentees with a high-quality examination system designed to produce clear and unambiguous patents. The patent system must continue to promote innovation by existing companies, while also allowing the next generation of inventors to build new products and services without facing an undue risk of frivolous lawsuits. These costly lawsuits, fueled by low-quality patents, allow patent assertion entities (PAEs) to drain productive businesses of $29 billion a year in legal costs according to a Bessen and Meurer study, pressuring job-creating enterprises into choosing between settling unmeritorious claims out of court, or facing bankruptcy.

Reforms in recent years, including legislative reforms like the introduction of AIA post-grant proceedings and judicial decisions such as Alice and TC Heartland, have helped to reduce the proliferation of PAEs and the cost of litigation, while also improving the quality of patents issued by the Patent Office. However, even with these helpful reforms, the cost and frequency of patent litigation remains high, with PAEs using existing low-quality patents targeting companies across all sectors of the economy, ranging from high-tech businesses to restaurants to retailers and coffee shops.

CCIA’s View:

CCIA supports real patent reforms that include an end to abusive patent litigation and measures to promote high-quality patents. Specific solutions include:

  • Patent reform legislation, including measures to limit abusive litigation by PAEs and protect end users;
  • Continued enhancements to the inter partes review process, which provides a mechanism for the Patent Office to review patents that should not have issued;
  • Patent quality improvements in the USPTO examination process to encourage high-quality, clear patents, and reduce ambiguous patents with overly broad claims.

CCIA opposes some proposed reforms which would roll back the reforms that have had a positive impact on the patent system, such as measures to expand patentable subject matter and limit the inter partes review process.

CCIA writes about current patent issues at its blog Patent Progress.

Most Recent Statements & Filings:

CCIA Asks Supreme Court To Review Constitutionality of ITC’s Actions In Patent Case Illustrating Expanded Use Of ITC Against US Companies

Washington — As the International Trade Commission has increasingly expanded its jurisdiction to include ruling on domestic patent issues, the Computer & Communications Industry Association filed an amicus brief Monday afternoon asking the Supreme Court to grant cert and review the misuse of the ITC by foreign entities against US companies. The Federal District court…

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CCIA Patent Counsel Josh Landau Testifies Before Senate Subcommittee

Washington — CCIA Patent Counsel Josh Landau will testify  before the Senate Judiciary’s IP subcommittee today on pending patent legislation. Landau will caution senators that provisions in the STRONGER Patents Act weaken the inter partes review procedure used to invalidate patents that never should have been issued. In his written testimony, Landau said, “The STRONGER…

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CCIA Asks PTO To Preserve Ability To Challenge Weak, Overly Broad Patents

Washington — The Computer & Communications Industry Association has sent a letter to Patent and Trademark Office Director Iancu asking him not to implement new rules that would prevent challenges to weak or overly broad patents. Senators Coons and Tillis sent a letter to PTO Director Iancu expressing concern over so-called “serial” IPR petitions.  The…

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