Curriculum

Patent Law

B743 is taught by M. Janis, M. Leaffer

This class surveys United States patent law, with an emphasis on the decisions of the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), and the U.S. Supreme Court. The structure follows the basic steps of a patent infringement suit, addressing claim construction, validity, infringement, defenses and remedies. In general, we will draw on cases involving straightforward and sometimes even humble technological developments that illustrate fundamental patent law principles. We will learn how patent law arguments are developed and rebutted before the courts and the USPTO; how the institutions of the patent system operate and how they might be improved; and how changes to the patent law regime, including those enacted as part of the America Invents Act, affect a wide range of innovators, from start-ups to universities to multi-national tech companies. The exam is an open-book take-home exam.