Monthly Archives: October 2013

Patent Trolling Provokes the Ire of VCs and Comes Before the House Judiciary Committee

Patent assertion entities (PAEs), or patent trolls, are in the news again.  On Tuesday, the House Judiciary Committee began expedited hearings on a comprehensive patent reform bill.  Last week, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Representative Bob Goodlatte introduced the Innovation Act of 2013.  Several weeks ago, we discussed provisions of the Act when it was in

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California Supreme Court Again Delves Into Arbitration Agreements

The Federal Arbitration Act of 1925 (FAA) provides that arbitration agreements are “valid, irrevocable and enforceable, and entitled to the same respect as other contracts.”  In spite of this, the California Supreme Court several years ago struck down an arbitration clause in a consumer agreement because the arbitration agreement did not permit the consumer to

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The Government Shutdown Creates Big Problems for Small Businesses and Startups

After more than a two-week partial shutdown, the federal government is back to work.  Last night, the House and Senate approved legislation ending the 16-day shutdown by funding government operations until January 15, 2014, and extending federal borrowing power by raising the debt ceiling through February 7, 2014.  President Obama signed the bill early this

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Patent Trolls Are Facing Investigation by FTC and Increased Court Transfers

It has been two weeks since we last addressed the issue of patent reform and patent trolling, and it seems that once again the issue is making headlines in the business and legal communities.  According to pandodaily, the site-of-record for Silicon Valley startups, “[t]he Federal Trade Commission has proposed a study that would put patent

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Small Businesses and Startups Rejoice: The Ban on General Solicitation Has Been Lifted

Last Monday, September 23, 2013, Title II of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act, or JOBS Act, took effect.  Title II lifted the ban on general solicitation, allowing small businesses and startups to publicly advertise that they are seeking investments.  For the past 80 years, general solicitation has been illegal in this country pursuant to

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