We previously reported on the recent efforts by Congress to reform patent litigation procedures by way of the House’s “Innovation Act” H.R. 3309. The Senate is considering its version of the bill, entitled the Patent Litigation Integrity Act, S. 1612.
Predictably, the competing bills have engendered significant debate. As to the House bill, a group of eight Judiciary Committee members that included ranking Democrat John Conyers (Mich.) and Republicans Doug Collins and Hank Johnson (both of Georgia) sent a letter on November 8 to House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R, VA).
These eight members “request[ed] that an additional hearing be held to further study the text and impact” of the bill. The signatories stated that “an additional hearing is necessary to give [the American public] more time to fully voice their concerns and to give members of the Committee more time to thoroughly examine the important issues at play.” The letter further indicates that while these members agree it is important to make “the patent system work better for all Americans,” passing such sweeping legislation before its consequences have been fully considered would be rash.
Gibbons will continue to monitor developments in this area.