Congratulations to OBWB Global Chair Jonathan Osha and Managing Partner Jeffrey Bergman on their inclusion in IAM Patent 1000 rankings of individuals recommended in IP law/patent prosecution. #recognition #patentlaw #intellectualproperty
"Osha Liang rebranded as Osha Bergman Watanabe & Burton (OBWB) in October 2020, in celebration of the contributions made to the practice by a larger group of partners. As a result of this change, the top-specced boutique went into 2021 with added momentum undimmed by the Covid-19 pandemic, which has only put an added premium on the sort of superior quality work and service that the firm has always prioritised."
The USPTO is setting DOCX as the preferred file format for all non-provisional applications filed on or after January 1, 2022. DOCX filings are presently limited to the specification, claims, and abstract for new non-provisional utility applications filed under 35 U.S.C. Section 111, noting that the USPTO plans to expand their system to accept DOCX for other application papers. It will still be possible to file an application in pdf format, however at an additional cost of US$400. OBWB is presently capable to file in the DOCX format, thus avoiding the unnecessary and unwanted additional fees come January.
In Wastow Enterprises, LLC v. Truckmovers.Com, Inc., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reminded that a patent's title can serve as intrinsic evidence during trial in determining the scope of the claims. The court reaffirmed that although the title of a patent is not the sole piece of evidence considered during claim construction, a patent's title may be one evidentiary factor.
Warren Buffett – one of the most famously successful investors of all time -- once said: "Never invest in a business you cannot understand." And Peter Lynch, another one of the world's all-time top investors said: "Never invest in an idea you can't illustrate with a crayon." When the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit rules that a digital camera is an "abstract idea" and therefore constitutes patent-ineligible subject matter, it is beyond doubt that patent subject matter eligibility law under Section 101 of the Patent Act, Title 35, United States Code, is not susceptible to being "illustrated with a crayon," and has progressed to the point where no rational person can understand it. Will investors follow the advice of Buffett and Lynch, and turn away from patent-reliant businesses? It seems inevitable unless the U.S. Supreme Court or Congress fix the problem.
The Enlarged Board of Appeal, in decision G4/19 issued on June 22, 2021, held that a European patent application can be refused in examination by reason of the prohibition on double patenting, thus excluding two European patents being granted to the same applicant for the same invention. In the case at issue, the scope of a European patent application was identical to the scope of a European patent granted to the same applicant, from which the European patent application-in-suit claimed priority, and was thus refused by the Examining Division.
The requirements to disclose relevant background art or information to the European Patent Office (EPO) are minimal and not comparable to those before the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). A large number of applicants for European patent are even exempted from these requirements. As of July 1, 2021, applicants claiming priority of a Chinese first filing will be exempted too.
On June 18th, OBWB Partner Yuichi Watanabe joins fellow speakers at the WIPO GREEN symposium to discuss IP & green innovation. Organized by the Japan Patent Office and the Japan Intellectual Property Association in collaboration with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), IP experts will address initiatives to resolve environmental challenges and further the advancement of green technologies.
The Spring 2021 edition of Best Lawyers was a special issue featuring "Women in the Law." As reported by the magazine, "According to data collected by Best Lawyers over the past five years, the legal industry is showing promising growth when it comes to gender diversity among top legal talent."
The Houston Business Journal published their annual list of largest IP law firms in the Houston Area. OBWB was delighted to be ranked #6 on this year's list.