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Abstract

Reexamination is playing a significant role in the patent landscape. The United States Patent and Trademark Office is reexamining and invalidating more patent claims than ever before. Potential infringers, aware of this trend, can benefit from reexamination proceedings initiated before, during, and after litigation. Moreover, a prevalent reexamination system benefits both the public and industry. Efficient reexamination enables parties to challenge overly broad patents at a reasonable cost which reduces transaction costs, promoting innovation. Patent holders have responded by crafting narrow claims which fair well before the patent office and in court. The current reexamination trend, if continued, will have a strong and positive effect on innovation in the United States.

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