Raises Concerns with Innovation Act and Emphasizes Importance of Maintaining Strong Patent Protections for Entrepreneurs
WASHINGTON, DC – Robert Taylor, Founder and Owner of RPT Legal Strategies PC, an intellectual consulting firm in San Francisco and Silicon Valley, testified today on behalf of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet at a hearing to discuss recent Supreme Court cases related to patent enforcement.
During testimony, Taylor walked lawmakers through the role that venture capital plays in fueling the innovation economy and emphasized the importance of strong patent protections to promote the health and vitality of the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
“[M]aking it more costly to enforce patents in order to combat abusive litigation will have the unintended consequence of diminishing—if not extinguishing—the only true incentive that thousands of innovators presently have to invest the necessary time, money and other resources needed to create a new company from scratch,” said Taylor in his written testimony. “Put differently, the patent-backed right to own and profit from innovative ideas has been a major driving force for the American economy for 200 years, and that right requires that valid patents be fully enforceable in court at reasonable expense and without undue risk to the patent owner or its investors.”
As part of his testimony, Taylor made clear that the venture industry has several concerns with H.R. 9, the Innovation Act, which was recently introduced by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.
“Let me say frankly at the outset, we are concerned that H.R. 9, if enacted as written, will have a chilling effect on investment in patent intensive companies, which in turn will have a depressing effect on innovation in general,” said Taylor in his written testimony. “At the very least, the legislation will make it far more difficult, risky and expensive for emerging companies to enforce their patents, which is an essential part of the patent right. Equally important, H.R. 9 also will raise the cost and risk confronting smaller companies trying to defend against patent litigation brought by their larger, incumbent competitors.”
Taylor’s full written testimony can be downloaded here.