Tuesday, July 05, 2005

US Court of Federal Claims says patent fee diversion all right

In Figueroa v. US, 2005 U.S. Claims LEXIS 170, the court addressed the constitutionality of fee diversion of patent fees from the USPTO and concluded:

Congress is entitled to great deference under the Necessary and
Proper Clause when it legislates under its Intellectual Property power. Any
intellectual property law Congress passes need only survive the limited scrutiny of
the rational basis test as to whether it promotes the progress of science
and the useful arts. Plaintiff may well be correct that the current patent fee
regime is misguided and creates the wrong incentives, but such policy
determinations are for Congress, and not the courts, to make.
Plaintiff has not carried his burden of showing that Congress has behaved irrationally.


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