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Craig Countryman quoted in Law 360 article "Bill To End Chevron Deference May Put Target On USPTO Rules"

January 24, 2017

Articles

Craig Countryman quoted in Law 360 article "Bill To End Chevron Deference May Put Target On USPTO Rules"

January 24, 2017

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Litigation attorney Craig Countryman was quoted in the January 20, 2017, Law360 article “Bill To End Chevron Deference May Put Target on USPTO Rules.”  The article reviews challenges and implications for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office if the Regulatory Accountability Act of 2017 that recently passed the U.S. House of Representatives does become law.  The bill aims to end judicial deference to agency legal interpretations.

To read the full article, click here. 

“When there are questions about whether the board’s regulations are reasonable, there could be a difference,” said Craig Countryman of Fish & Richardson PC. “If the courts apply Chevron deference, they may take a more lenient approach, but if this legislation passes, they might take a harder look at it.”

“I think the Federal Circuit would be reluctant to change course and you wouldn’t necessarily see the Supreme Court take another look at it. But it definitely reopens the question,” Countryman said.

Patent term adjustment can be particularly important in pharmaceutical cases where adding another month or two to the life of a patent could be worth millions of dollars, and “that’s another area that could be changed if Chevron deference were repealed,” Countryman said.

“Even if Chevron deference formally goes away, you wonder if judges would really wade into that,” Countryman said. “But if judges are so inclined, getting rid of Chevron deference frees their hand on that kind of thing.”

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