35 U.S. Code § 317 - Settlement
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(a) In General.— An inter partes review instituted under this chapter shall be terminated with respect to any petitioner upon the joint request of the petitioner and the patent owner, unless the Office has decided the merits of the proceeding before the request for termination is filed. If the inter partes review is terminated with respect to a petitioner under this section, no estoppel under section 315 (e) shall attach to the petitioner, or to the real party in interest or privy of the petitioner, on the basis of that petitioner’s institution of that inter partes review. If no petitioner remains in the inter partes review, the Office may terminate the review or proceed to a final written decision under section 318 (a).
(b) Agreements in Writing.— Any agreement or understanding between the patent owner and a petitioner, including any collateral agreements referred to in such agreement or understanding, made in connection with, or in contemplation of, the termination of an inter partes review under this section shall be in writing and a true copy of such agreement or understanding shall be filed in the Office before the termination of the inter partes review as between the parties. At the request of a party to the proceeding, the agreement or understanding shall be treated as business confidential information, shall be kept separate from the file of the involved patents, and shall be made available only to Federal Government agencies on written request, or to any person on a showing of good cause.
Source(Added Pub. L. 106–113, div. B, § 1000(a)(9) [title IV, § 4604(a)], Nov. 29, 1999, 113 Stat. 1536, 1501A–570; amended Pub. L. 107–273, div. C, title III, § 13202(a)(5), (c)(1),Nov. 2, 2002, 116 Stat. 1901, 1902; Pub. L. 112–29, § 6(a),Sept. 16, 2011, 125 Stat. 303.)
2011—Pub. L. 112–29amended section generally. Prior to amendment, section related to restriction on subsequent request for inter partes reexamination.
2002—Pub. L. 107–273, § 13202(c)(1), made technical correction to directory language of Pub. L. 106–113, which enacted this section.
Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 107–273, § 13202(a)(5)(A), substituted “third-party requester nor its privies” for “patent owner nor the third-party requester, if any, nor privies of either”.
Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 107–273, § 13202(a)(5)(B), struck out “United States Code,” after “title 28,”.
Effective Date of 2011 Amendment
Amendment by Pub. L. 112–29effective upon the expiration of the 1-year period beginning on Sept. 16, 2011, and applicable to any patent issued before, on, or after that effective date, with provisions for graduated implementation, see section 6(c)(2) ofPub. L. 112–29, set out as a note under section 311 of this title.
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