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On Sept. 16, new methods of challenging patents before the Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) went into effect, thanks to the America Invents Act. Three of the four methods available to businesses now are brand-new, and similar to litigation. The last, ex parte re-examination, has been around for a while, but is pricier in this incarnation.

Our December issue guides in-house counsel through each of these methods and advises companies to carefully consider their options before challenging a patent. Each of the methods has “distinct advantages and disadvantages,” according to Reed Smith Partner Marc Kaufman. In this cheat sheet, we’ll sum up what you need to know about each of the options to bring a challenge before the PTO.

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