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Licensing Executives Society Concerned By Further Decline in US Patent System

Thursday, February 15, 2018   (0 Comments)
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RESTON, VA, FEBRUARY 15, 2018 - The Licensing Executives Society (USA and Canada), Inc. (LES) is deeply concerned by recent evidence of further decline in the effectiveness of the U.S. patent system. On February 8th, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Global Innovation Policy Center released the 6th edition of its International IP Index. The Index finds that the U.S. patent system has fallen to 12th place in the world. It's lowest ranking in the six years of the history of the Index. This comes after last year's surprising fall from first to 10th place, tied with Hungary.

The U.S. Chamber attributes the decline to a "growing level of uncertainty for innovators, particularly in relation to patent protection and technology licensing." The Index specifically cites uncertainties resulting from inconsistent interpretation of Supreme Court attempts to define patent-eligible subject matter by lower courts and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The Index further cites challenges innovators face in post-grant opposition proceedings, which "involve a great deal of cost and lack of predictability for patent owners compared with other post-grant opposition systems."

According to LES Past President Brian O'Shaughnessy, "This is all the more disconcerting as LES and its innovation-oriented members have long since pointed to these challenges as compromising our patent system, devaluing innovation, and suppressing new business formation. As goes our patent system, so goes our economy."

LES CEO, Kim Chotkowski adds "The cause for concern is still greater in view of Bloomberg's recent report finding that the U.S. has fallen out of the world's top ten innovation-oriented economies, citing similar challenges. Clearly, corrective measures are needed."

LES supports legislative and industry efforts to restore the U.S. patent system to its former preeminence. Among these are bills that would remedy the very challenges cited by the Index, including the STRONGER Patents Act (S. 1390). Industry self-regulation will also restore the vitality of our patent and licensing system. Through its Standards Initiative, LES has created a forum, open to all innovation-oriented enterprises, for developing consensus standards in IP-oriented business processes and behavior. These standards will streamline licensing and IP commercialization, and reduce the costs and uncertainties that have contributed to the decline of our patent system.

About Licensing Executives Society (U.S.A. and Canada), Inc.:

Established in 1965, the Licensing Executives Society, LES, has been a leading association for professionals in the business of intellectual property. Our members evaluate, protect, acquire, sell, license, and enforce IP rights. Our business executives, lawyers, accountants, engineers, scientists, and other experts come from a wide array of startups, multinational corporations, universities, government laboratories, law firms, valuation firms, and other consultancies. Nearly 3000 IP transaction professionals belong to LES (U.S.A. and Canada), and together with 32 other national and regional societies form the membership of the Licensing Executives Society International, totaling nearly 10,000 IP transaction professionals in 90 countries.www.lesusacanada.org.

Kim Chotkowski
Chief Executive Officer
Phone: (484) 459-1454
Email address: kchotkowski@les.org


11130 Sunrise Valley Drive, Suite 350 Reston, VA 20191 Phone: 703-234-4058 Fax: 703-435-4390