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Science and Technology Law

2011

Patents

Articles 1 - 3 of 3

Full-Text Articles in Law

Antitrust And Patent Law Analysis Of Pharmaceutical Reverse Payment Settlements, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2011

Antitrust And Patent Law Analysis Of Pharmaceutical Reverse Payment Settlements, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Patent settlements in which the patentee pays the alleged infringer to stay out of the market are largely a consequence of the Hatch-Waxman Act, which was designed to facilitate the entry of generic drugs by providing the first generic producer to challenge a pioneer drug patent with a 180 day period of exclusivity. This period can be extended by a settlement even if the generic is not producing, and in any event all subsequent generic firms are denied the 180 day exclusivity period, significantly reducing their incentive to enter.

The Circuit Courts of Appeal are split three ways over such ...


Antitrust And Innovation: Where We Are And Where We Should Be Going, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2011

Antitrust And Innovation: Where We Are And Where We Should Be Going, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

For large parts of their history intellectual property law and antitrust law have worked so as to undermine innovation competition by protecting too much. Antitrust policy often reflected exaggerated fears of competitive harm, and responded by developing overly protective rules that shielded inefficient businesses from competition at the expense of consumers. By the same token, the IP laws have often undermined rather than promoted innovation by granting IP holders rights far beyond what is necessary to create appropriate incentives to innovate.

Perhaps the biggest intellectual change in recent decades is that we have come to see patents less as a ...


Creation Without Restraint: Promoting Liberty And Rivalry In Innovation, Christina Bohannan, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2011

Creation Without Restraint: Promoting Liberty And Rivalry In Innovation, Christina Bohannan, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This document contains the table of contents, introduction, and a brief description of Christina Bohannan & Herbert Hovenkamp, Creation without Restraint: Promoting Liberty and Rivalry in Innovation (Oxford 2011).

Promoting rivalry in innovation requires a fusion of legal policies drawn from patent, copyright, and antitrust law, as well as economics and other disciplines. Creation Without Restraint looks first at the relationship between markets and innovation, noting that innovation occurs most in moderately competitive markets and that small actors are more likely to be truly creative innovators. Then we examine the problem of connected and complementary relationships, a dominant feature of high technology markets. Interconnection requirements, technological compatibility requirements, standard setting, and the relationship between durable products and aftermarkets all involve interconnection, or “tying.” Some see tying as inherently anticompetitive, while others view it as unexceptionally benign. In fact, bundling products or technologies is essential in high technology markets and most of it is socially beneficial, but possibilities of abuse nevertheless remain.

Identifying good substantive legal rules for facilitating innovation is often very difficult. Two generations ago antitrust law addressed problems of complexity by shifting the focus to harm. The courts reasoned that they could often avoid unmanageable substantive doctrine by considering whether the plaintiff had suffered the appropriate kind of injury. Plaintiffs who are injured by more rather than less competition should be denied a remedy. In the case of patent and copyright law, the appropriate question is whether an infringer’s conduct served to undermine the right holder’s incentive to innovate, with incentives measured from before the innovation occurred. Some IP infringements do no harm to the incentive to innovate; others actually make the right more rather than less valuable. In these situations relief should be denied.

Patent and copyright law are both in crisis today – major problems include overissuance, overly broad and ambiguously defined protections, and rules that permit both patentees and copyright holders to make broad claims on unforeseen innovations. The result has been that many patents are valueless, while others have very considerable value precisely because they enclose ideas or technologies that rightfully belong in the public domain. Patent law could be ...