One area of law that most lawyers do not have any experience with is patent law, and in particular, the patent prosecution process. Patent prosecution requires a special license, which in turn requires passing its own exam, and an undergraduate degree in science or engineering. Because it is such a specialized area of practice, with about only 40,000 active practitioners in the U.S., most law schools do not offer much in the way of course work in this area.
However, it is not unusual for an attorney who has no background in patent prosecution to litigate a patent infringement case, negotiate a settlement or a licensing agreement, or determine the value of patents during merger and acquisition activities. These attorneys need to know what vulnerability a patent may have as the result of the prosecution process. Lawyers who practice business or corporate law, trusts and estates, tax, bankruptcy, and even family law are confronted with issues of invention, patenting, patent validity, and patent ownership.
In this program, Pat Werschulz of Werschulz Patent Law, LLC, outlines the patent process, reviews the relevant governing statutes and shows how clients without proper guidance may end up losing their patent rights permanently.
Pat Werschulz is an intellectual property lawyer and a registered patent attorney with many years of industrial experience in product development and manufacturing. Prior to entering law practice, Pat was a chemist in the pharmaceutical industry, holding positions from bench chemist to Research Director.
She chose intellectual property law, as a second career because of a long-held fascination with patents and trademarks. After spending decades in the pharmaceutical industry working with patents, either researching for submission in new patent applications or developing a non-infringing alternate to a competitor’s patent, she wanted to help others file their own applications.
Pat’s patent practice has not been limited to just life sciences, but also includes a wide range of industrial consumer products. She has helped clients obtain patents in a wide range of art, from clothing to automobile parts, from baby accessories to sporting equipment.
Ms. Werschulz received her B.S. degree in Chemistry from Chatham College of Pittsburgh, her M.B.A from Fordham University and her J.D from Rutgers School of Law–Newark. Ms. Werschulz has a history of academic excellence, receiving the ABA/BNA Award for Excellence in Intellectual Property Law at Rutgers, the Dean’s Award for Academic Excellence at Fordham, graduating with the highest G.P.A. in her class and the American Chemical Society Outstanding Senior Chemistry Major as an undergraduate.
A good primer, as described. Thank you!
This was a great course.
Infrormative general presentation
Very interesting. A bit high on jargon for novices, but still useful -- and the materials will be a good resource too.