On January 1, 2013, a bill (H.R. 6621) cleared both houses of Congress to “correct and improve certain provisions” in the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act of 2011 (AIA) and in other parts the Patent Act. With the most controversial provisions having been left out or removed from the bill during deliberation, it is expected that the legislation will be signed into law by President Obama.

Although most of the bill is intended to cure minor, non-substantive mistakes in the AIA as passed in 2011, several provisions in H.R. 6621 could have a noticeable impact on patent prosecution and litigation.