The Patent Trial & Appeal Board (PTAB) poses a significant threat to patent monetization. Not because the PTAB is anti-patent, far from it, but because the patents challenged today were drafted for the scrutiny of the district court. That is, in a district court invalidity is only found where the presumption of patent validity is overcome by a clear and convincing evidentiary showing. Given the relative low risk of this happening as compared to a non-infringement finding, patents were drafted to obtain the broadest claims possible for ensuring a clean infringement read. Of course, the attractiveness of PTAB challenges is the absence of such pro-patentee standards.
As discussed previously, now that PTAB challenges are becoming the standard, initial hurdle, patents need to be drafted differently, or “post-grant proofed.” This new PTAB centric drafting and prosecution strategy is especially critical in the predictable arts. This is because existing claim drafting strategies might also permit your competitor to game the estoppel flowing from an unsuccessful Inter Partes Review (IPR) challenge. Read the rest of this entry »