What is a Post Grant Proceeding?
The post-grant proceeding is a proceeding under the American Invents Act to review a patent that has already been issued. Hence, the name Post-grant. Or a patent that’s already been granted. So, it’s a way of looking at a patent to determine if it’s valid or not after the patent has been granted.
In the past, there were procedures that could be used, or proceeding, inter-parties re-exam, ex-party re-exam, and some other proceedings. But now, in light of the AIA, we have three primary post-grant proceedings: the covered business method review, the inter-parties review, and a post-grant review.
The purpose of the Post-grant proceeding is to determine whether the claims are valid or not. Well, if you’re the patent owner, of course, you believe that the claims of the patent are valid and that your invention is an invention and you deserve that patent.
However, if you’re that patent owner’s competitor, you may feel otherwise. And so, if you think that the patent was issued in error, and never should have been granted, then you can choose one of these Post-grant proceedings. The PGR, or the IPR, the CBM review, and you can go after somebody’s granted patent and ask the patent office, and ultimately the courts if need be, whether that patent should have ever been granted in the first place. So, it’s a means for attacking somebody else’s patent and trying to eliminate it.