Washington Law Review


In In re Epstein, the Federal Circuit held that the United States Patent and Trademark Office may rely on hearsay evidence to reject patent applications. This Note examines the effects of the Epstein decision against the backdrop of software patenting and how administrative agencies have traditionally approached the problem of evaluating hearsay. It argues that the Patent and Trademark Office should articulate standards when scrutinizing hearsay in order to provide guidance to examiners and applicants, to prevent placing an unfair burden on applicants, and to thwart the abuse of the patent system.

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