The “Restoring America’s Leadership in Innovation Act of 2018” Will Strengthen America’s Patent System and Innovation Economy
The Small Business Technology Council (SBTC) strongly supports Representatives Massie’s and Kaptur’s introduction of the bipartisan “Restoring America’s Leadership in Innovation Act of 2018” (RALIA). This bill is extremely important in reversing the devastating effects that the America Invents Act (AIA) has had on American innovation. Since the passage of the AIA in December 2011, The United States has fallen from its long-standing position as number one to number 11 in Innovation and number 12 in Patent Strength, behind countries such as France, Sweden, Japan, Great Britain, and Singapore.
The AIA created the Patent Trial and Appeals Board (PTAB), which former Federal Circuit Chief Judge Randall Rader called “death squads killing property rights.” The PTAB allows repeated challenges of already approved patents, interfering with the companies right to utilize their patent. Most patents that had already been granted, but later went through the PTAB trial process have had claims invalidated, but that is not the worst of it. The PTAB delays inventors from obtaining clear title to their inventions. The PTAB can hold up the enforceability of patents by months or years, and has even overturned district court decisions. The life of a patent is limited already, and the PTAB prevents the immediate commercialization of new innovations. This has negatively affected America’s funding of new businesses. In 2006, 81% of the global venture capital came to the US, but since the AIA went into effect, the US’s share of global venture capital dropped to 54%. Even worse, early-stage VC funding is imploding, dropping by about half since the AIA took effect. And China is now filing significantly more patent applications than the US.
What this has meant for the American economy is that new inventing companies are not being created nor growing. In fact, in two-thirds of America’s metro areas, companies are dying faster than being birthed. This is having a distressing effect on job growth from small companies. Holding a patent increases startup employment by 36%, sales growth by 51%, and probability of securing venture capital funding by 53%.
The RALIA bill will help small inventing businesses and will allow the patent office to keep its own fees. Retained fees along with the money saved from the PTAB will allow the Patent Office to strengthen its examination staff and procedures, further eliminating any need for the PTAB.
Thus, the Massie-Kaptur RALIA bill will cut the anchor the AIA’s PTAB has tied on to the American economy. The SBTC encourages those who want a stronger America with high paying new jobs to contact their representatives and ask them to support the Massie-Kaptur RALIA bill, HR 6264.
About the Small Business Technology Council
The Small Business Technology Council (www.SBTC.org) is the nation’s largest association of small, technology-based companies in diverse fields. SBTC advocates on behalf of the 6000 firms who participate in the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. With less than 1.7% percent of Federal R&D, SBIR/STTR firms have created over 20 percent of America’s major innovations, and as many patents as all universities combined; plus we are creating sustainable manufacturing and service jobs in the U.S. Small businesses produce 16 times more patents per employee than large patenting firms, which has a direct correlation with job growth.