One Year After Alice: Was It The Right Medicine?

Law360, New York (June 18, 2015, 5:31 PM EDT) -- One year ago, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Alice v. CLS Bank.[1] Immediately, many in the patent community feared that the ambiguous language in that case would lead to unpredictable applications of 35 U.S.C. §101 and the loss of patent protection for many valuable inventions.[2] To better determine whether these concerns were coming to fruition and to study how Alice was being interpreted by courts and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the American Bar Association's Section of Intellectual Property Law formed the "Post-Alice Task Force," consisting of over 60 attorneys with a wide variety of viewpoints and experiences. As discussed below, the task force has found that Alice has resulted in lower courts and patent examiners concluding that a significant percentage of patents and applications are invalid for lack of patent eligibility under §101, often with nothing more than conclusory statements and little (if any) substantive analysis....

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