Fed. Circ. Recognizes Non-Lawyer Patent Agent Privilege

Law360, New York (March 7, 2016, 6:17 PM EST) -- Communications between U.S. patent applicants and their non-attorney patent agents should be afforded some degree of privilege, a split Federal Circuit ruled Monday, in a case over smartphones that was closely watched by members of the patent bar.

In a 2-1 decision, the appeals court recognized for the first time a patent agent privilege, affording the same type of protections in attorney-client privilege to communications between registered patent agents and their clients.

Patent agents are not licensed attorneys, but they are certified to prepare and prosecute...
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