Patent Term After Wyeth v. Kappos


Prior to 1995, the term of a U.S. patent was 17 years from the date of issue. In 1995, the patent laws were amended to change the term of an issued patent to 20 years from the original filing date in an effort to harmonize U.S. laws with patent laws in other countries.

One consequence of the change was the potential for an unfairly shortened patent life due to U.S. Patent and Trademark Office delays that would prevent the patent from being issued within three years.

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