Fairfield University event to focus on highly debated new patent reform law, the America Invents Act


Media Advisory


Image: McAuliffe HallWhat: "The Impact of Patent Reform on Independent Inventors and Start-up Companies"

The highly debated legislation on patent reform is now law. Mark Nowotarski, president of Markets, Patents & Alliances, LLC, in Darien, Conn., will discuss what the new law calls for and its perceived impact on the economy and entrepreneurs. The event is sponsored by Fairfield University's Computer Engineering Department and the not-for-profit Inventors' Association of Connecticut (IACT).

When: Thursday, September 29, 7 p.m. Admission is free to the talk, which is open to the public.

Where: Fairfield University's Kelley Center, on the Fairfield campus.

Why: Patent reform legislation was signed into law on September 16, 2011. This law, called the "America Invents Act," will make sweeping changes to how patents are obtained, validated and enforced, organizers said. Three of these changes are particularly important to independent inventors and start-up companies:

  • Determining patent validity based on first to file versus first to invent.
  • Lower micro entity fees for independent inventors.
  • Post-grant review for challenging the validity of recently issued patents.

Nowotarski, a registered U.S. patent agent, will present the basics of these changes, explain how they are likely to impact independent inventors and start-up companies, and discuss strategies for how to best take advantage of the opportunities these changes create. The Princeton and Stanford-educated Nowotarski has served clients in the medical devices, personal safety, consumer products, homeland security, and financial services industries. There will also be a question and answer period.

Dr. Douglas Lyon, professor of computer engineering at Fairfield, is the IACT's president. For more information, visit Fairfield's School of Engineering at http://www.fairfield.edu/soe/ or http://www.inventus.org/.

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Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726, mmccaffrey@fairfield.edu

Posted on September 26, 2011

Vol. 44, No. 52