According to Info World, the Innovation Act of 2013 has bipartisan support, and many in the tech industry are excited about the impending vote on it in Congress. Others have concerns, however. Here are some features of the bill that are causing excitement in the intellectual property world:
- In a patent lawsuit, the losing party will have to pay the winner's reasonable legal fees. This may discourage frivolous suits from patent assertion entities.
- End-users will be protected from patent lawsuits to a greater extent, preventing suits against businesses that use a product that allegedly infringes intellectual property rights rather than manufacture it, such as coffee shops that use a Wi-Fi router alleged to have infringed a patent.
- Companies wishing to claim patent infringement will need to present a more detailed claim demonstrating exactly how the defendant has infringed their intellectual property rights.
- Provisions will exist for patent re-examination to ensure patents cover a well-defined idea or invention rather than a vague concept.
However, some organizations have reservations. For example, the BSA withheld its endorsement for the patent re-examination part of the bill, as it felt it would create an overly broad definition of business method patents. The organization feels any entity sued for patent infringement regarding business methods could make frivolous challenges against the integrity of the patent in question.