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Intellectual Property
University of Kentucky School of Law
Weinberg, Harold R.

Intellectual Property Rights are found under Article 1, Sec. 8 of the Constitution. That section is meant to promote the arts and sciences.

Utility patent – 20, Design 14, Copyright life+70, WfH life+95, Trademark forever (as long as its continually being used).

Useful? Aesthetic? Trademark?


Patents allow people to buy and sell ideas.

A patent is a right to exclude others from making/using/selling your product.

The Written Description
· POSA is a Person with Ordinary Skill in the Art. Patents have to explain how to construct or perform something such that the POSA could do so.
· Can only claim things that appear in the description – want to have as broad a description as possible normally, but sometimes companies will narrow the description before going after a competitor in order to make certain the patent holds up in court.
· A patent applied for on or before June 8th, 1995 receives 17 years of protection from the date of issuance or 20 years from the date of application – whichever is longer.
· A patent applied for after June 8th, 1995 receives 20 years of protection from the date of the application.
Requirements for a Patent Application
· The disclosure requirements – Description, Enablement, Best Mode (Sec. 112)
· Enablement – What it is / how it works. Enough information must be given for a POSA to construct the invention.
· Best Mode – The patentee’s own subjective judgment as to the “preferred embodiment” of the invention – the best way to use the invention.
· Written Description – Used to established priority, describes the invention process and gives a date as to when the patentee realized what she had. Also used to prevent the patentee from overreaching, and it’s possible that in inadequate description could lead to an invalid patent.
o A broad claim offers the most protection, but also poses the most risk. Many patent holders will narrow their claim before engaging in litigation.
o The description should clearly inform the reader as to w

production of articles for use from raw or prepared materials”
§ Example: Creating plastic.
· The laws of nature, physical phenomena, and abstract ideas have been held not patentable.
Diamond v. Chakrabarty
· The inventor sought to patent a new type of bacteria he created.
o The court said this was OK because the bacteria did not occur in (was not a product of) nature.
Medical Patents
· It is possible that a court will invalidate some life-saving procedures on the grounds that they should not be privately owned – Morton Case.
· On the other hand, medical patents seem to spur medical research.
· Congress has made it impossible to sue for money damages or an injunction against a health care person using the patent.
To Invent
· Must have Conception and Reduction to Practice. (Sec 100,1)
Utility (Sec. 101)