Businesses of all types and sizes throughout the United States, Mexico and beyond bring their disputes to Gardere's litigation team and receive practical, responsive, boutique-style attention in return. Our clients have access to the firepower and value of a well-known and highly-regarded Firm's capabilities and interdisciplinary strengths.
Gardere has a national and international energy practice formed around our Energy Industry Team, which is a multidisciplinary group of approximately 80 attorneys with diverse backgrounds, experience and skills specific to the energy industry. Our team includes attorneys who have served as in-house counsel for major energy companies, providing a depth of insight into our clients' needs, issues and concerns. We understand and regularly practice in virtually every sector of the energy, and we represent a wide variety of industry participants from multinational corporations to individuals.
From our offices in the United States and Mexico, our International Practice helps clients operate in today’s global economy. We have more than 30 professionals operating as a boutique within an Am Law 200 law firm and are able to provide focused service with the resources of a large firm. We understand that clients who are engaged in the global marketplace need lawyers who can operate seamlessly across multiple jurisdictions. Our international experts are multi-lingual, are culturally fluent and intimately familiar with various legal systems across the world, especially those in Latin America. Whether you need help with commercial transactions, regulatory matters, customs and import regulations, immigration matters, M&A and joint ventures, international disputes, or international tax planning, Gardere’s international team is here to assist you.
We represent domestic and foreign private funds in all aspects of fund formation, fund operations, platform and add-on acquisitions, and portfolio company operations. Our team has a reputation for being the go-to-lawyers for private equity funds, hedge funds, venture capital funds and family offices. We are known for our vast deal experience, the efficient way we staff and manage our work, and the way we maintain our relationships. We get deals done with sophisticated, strategic, and practical advice tailored to the needs of our clients.
*Not admitted to practice law.
The President signed into law today the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act. The Act makes the most significant changes to U.S. patent laws in the last 60 years. Some changes will be effective immediately. Others will take effect in either 12 or 18 months.
Although it will not take effect for 18 months, the most talked about change in the law is moving to a "first inventor to file" system. Under current law the "first to invent" is the rightful patentee, even if that person was not the "first to file." The patent will go to the "first inventor to file" if there are two or more inventors trying to patent the same invention. The change generally conforms U.S. law to "first to file" systems abroad. However, unlike most foreign patent systems, the new law allows the inventor to disclose his invention up to one year prior to filing an application for patent without losing rights to the patent. A similar system has been in effect in Canada. Those who derive the invention from the true inventor cannot apply for a patent. A derivation proceeding can be brought in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office should an inventor believe that has occurred.
Another important change includes measures for increasing funding of the PTO. These measures allow the PTO to set its fees at levels necessary to recover costs and, subject to Congressional oversight, to keep the fees it collects.
The Act contains a large number of additional changes, the most notable of which are summarized below.
Changes Starting 12 Months from Enactment
Inter partes reexamination will no longer be available in 12 months, though reexams initiated before that date will continue under the existing reexamination rules. Three new procedures in the PTO for third parties to invalidate patents, or narrow their scope, will come into play at that point.
More Changes Coming
Many aspects of the new law require new rule making and revised procedures. The PTO is expected to publish, starting in the next month and continuing for over the next year or so, several rules packages for public comment. These rule packages will include substantial rewrites of many existing regulations and a significant number of new rules. We will keep you advised as the landscape of the revised Patent Act takes shape over the coming months.
The publications contained in this site do not constitute legal advice. Legal advice can only be given with knowledge of the client's specific facts. By putting these publications on our website we do not intend to create a lawyer-client relationship with the user. Materials may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements. This information should in no way be taken as an indication of future results.
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