BIO Commends House Judiciary Committee’s Review of The Innovation Act
Washington, D.C. (April 14, 2015) – The following statement may be attributed to BIO President and CEO Jim Greenwood:
“BIO supports the efforts of the House Judiciary Committee to curb abuse of the patent system by those seeking to use the system for personal financial gain rather than to promote innovation. However, we are concerned that H.R. 9, the Innovation Act of 2015, goes beyond targeting abusive practices, including with respect to its excessive pleading requirements, mandatory stays of discovery, and mechanisms for joinder of third-party investors, licensors, and collaborators in all patent-related cases.
“These provisions, among others, would raise the cost of, delay, and complicate the enforcement of patents by all patent owners, and are not narrowly targeted to address the articulated concerns regarding patent trolls.
“Many of these same concerns were expressed by Michelle Lee, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), when she testified before the committee today.
“We pledge to support a patent reform bill that is targeted and balanced – one that cracks down on abuses not only in the courts, but also in the PTO’s administrative patent challenge system. Any reform bill that purports to target abusive practices must fix this PTO system as well, which is being used by “reverse patent trolls” to fundamentally undermine the ability of biotechnology companies to rely on their patents to raise and invest the hundreds of millions of dollars needed to develop and bring to market the next generation of innovations in healthcare, agriculture, and energy.
“BIO stand ready to work with Chairman Goodlatte and the House Judiciary Committee to improve the bill as it works its way through the legislative process.