Widerman Malek Law Blog

Protecting Software Using Patent And Trade Secret Law

Protecting Software Using Patent And Trade Secret Law Traditional legal strategies have pitted trade secret law and patent law against one another.  This is because patents are made public while trade secrets must be kept confidential.  However, there is a way to utilize the best of what both have to offer.

Overcoming Patent Application Rejections by the USPTO

35 USC §101 Rejections Since the U.S. Supreme Court decided Alice v. CLS Bank in 2014 there has been a drastic increase in 35 USC §101 rejections. The decision emphasized that inventions “directed to an abstract idea” are not patentable. The U.S. Patent Office has used this decision to reject a majority of software utility […]

Protecting Your Software’s Application Programming Interface (API)

In this article, we are continuing the discussion of a legal strategy to protect software that involves segmenting software into three tiers and protecting each tier separately. This strategy has been developed in response to a 2014 U.S. Supreme Court case, Alice v. CLS Bank, that effectively slammed the door on receiving and enforcing software […]

Design Patents to Protect Your Software

In a previous article, we discussed a legal strategy for protecting software that involved segmenting software into three tiers and protecting each tier separately. Those tiers are as follows: Level One: User Interface Level Two: API Level Three: Algorithms and Data Structures This article focuses on the first tier, which involves how the user interacts […]

Is There Legal Protection for Software?

Although the protection strategy has changed, the answer is yes. Until recently, software patents accounted for about half of all utility patents issued by the USPTO. Application of a 2014 U.S. Supreme Court case, Alice v. CLS Bank, effectively slammed the door on this practice. Likewise, software patents issued prior to this decision have been […]

Lee Resigns; Matal Appointed Acting Director of USPTO

In the day following Michelle Lee’s resignation as Director of the USPTO, Joseph Matal was announced as Acting Director.

U.S. Supreme Court Changes Patent Litigation Practice

Summary of the Decision: On May 22, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned nearly 30 years of patent litigation practice by narrowing the application of a statute describing where plaintiffs may file a lawsuit. In the past, patent holders have been able to file suit in almost any jurisdiction in which a defendant sells an […]

Negotiating the Distribution of Patented Products: Questions to Ask

When a company is ready to bring its debut product to market, excitement may run high. The importance of protecting the company’s intellectual property rights in the new product is paramount. While the company may enter contract negotiations with its distributor in good faith and in anticipation of creating a mutually beneficial agreement, a lack […]

Negotiating the Distribution of Patented Products: Points to Consider

Every week, it seems, another news story appears about an innovative startup preparing to launch its new take on a product to a waiting market. While consumers and companies alike often eagerly anticipate these launches, they also pose potential risks to the company and its ownership of its intellectual property. Today’s marketplace is more competitive […]

I Want to Make a Prototype. How do I Protect my Idea?

You have a great idea and you are ready to take the next step and have a prototype built. This may require the expertise of a draftsman, engineer, or manufacturing house, maybe even an investor. While the best way to protect any invention is often a patent, there may be considerations that prevent filing for […]

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