TheU.S. Patent and Trademark Office's decision not to appeal a Jan. 7 Federal Circuit ruling paves the way for holders of new patents to request an increase in patent term adjustments due to delays in PTO reviews. Whether holders of older patents will be eligible for the longer extensions made possible under Wyeth v. Kappos will likely be determined by another suit seeking equitable relief.
The first of these cases, brought by The General Hospital Corp., is awaiting a court date in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
In Wyeth v. Kappos, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) considered the PTO's interpretation of the 1999 Patent Term Guarantee Act, which provides for patent term adjustments (PTAs) to compensate for