December 5, 2013

Patenting Long-Held Trade Secrets Just Got Easier

The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) which went into effect in March contains a little-discussed provision that could greatly strengthen the value and patentability of long-held trade secrets.

In published notes on the new law, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has indicated that it will no longer consider secret sales and secret use of an invention as disclosed prior art. This change will enable companies and inventors to commercially exploit inventions without disclosing them in a patent and then patent them when it is economically preferable.

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