Under the America Invents Act passed into law in 2011, companies have two new alternatives in challenging patents in front of the USPTO as opposed to through litigation before a Court: an inter partes review (IPR) or a covered business method review (CBM).
Since inter partes reviews began, the “kill” rate of patents has been staggering. The USPTO has invalidated 327 of the 2,113 patent claims that have been challenged via inter partes petitions and another 245 claims have been canceled or disclaimed. The USPTO invalidation rate has far exceeded the federal district court’s rate of invalidation in the same time period.
Based on these success rates so far, the number of IPR’s and CBM’s have skyrocketed. The chart above from the USPTO shows the number of IPR’s filed on a monthly basis since September 2012. As shown, the number of IPR’s filed through June 30, 2014, far outpaced the number filed during the same period in 2013.
Because of their success in invalidating patents thus far, it is likely IPR and CBM filings will continue to increase.