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that amount less their time of service in the armed forces. In Some cases, patents which could have been promoted and taken advantage of during that interval, were dormant and not put to use because the veterans gave up their civilian rights to give their services for the winning of the war. This case particularly applies to individuals like myself and therefore H. R. 1107 is of particular significant to a veteran like myself and those associates of mine who are also veterans. I have a number of patents, particularly patent No. 1,737,513, which deals with particular features used in electrodes which are attached to luminous tubes and more particularly for neon signs and for cold cathode tubing for interior lighting, which expired in December 1946. Up to the time I entered the service, the application of the invention was limited, and therefore I did not derive much benefit from the use of this invention. During the war, while I served in the Army, there arose a new industry usin electrodes for cold cathode interior lighting, increasing tremendously the value of my patent to this industry. Because of serving in the armed forces, neither I nor any of my associates were able to take advantage of this patent. During this period of service for our country, some companies had already started to infringe upon this patent, even before it expired. We of course, were helpless to do arsything in the matter because of our position with the armed forces. This not only applies to this patent which expired but to quite a number of other patents which were held by myself and my associates. We actually had cut out of our patent life the time of service spent with our country. My associates and myself feel that this bill should be considered as being of prime importance to a group of veterans like myself and deserves consideration by being passed by your committee and eventually by the House and Senate. We also wish to refer to Report No. 2686 issued by Mr. Lanham from the Committee on Patents, to accompany H. R. 6346 when it was presented and passed by the House of Represntatives of the Seventy-ninth Congress, second session. The committee represented by Mr. Lanham felt that in cases of the kind mentioned, persons who served in the military or naval forces during the present war, were entitled to have the time limitation of their patents extended, and the bill was drawn to accomplish that purpose. This bill was substantially identical with a similar act which was passed after World War I, which adequately protected third-party rights. With the amendments adopted, the committee recommended that the bill be passed. We beg that the Committee on Patents give H. R. 1107 as amended, its utmost consideration and that you will recommend its approval. Very respectfully yours, SAMUEL C. MILLER.

DEPARTMENT of CoMMERCE, - Washington 25, June 10, 1947. Hon. EARL C. MICHENER, Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, Washington, D. C.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN : This letter is in further answer to your request dated March 31, 1947, for the views of the Department on H. R. 124, a bill “To provide for the extension of the term of certain patents in the case of persons who serve in the land or naval forces of the United States during the present war.”

The Department opposes the extension of patents and therefore the enactment of the proposed bill for the following reasons:

(a) Extension of the 17-year monopoly agreed to and granted in exchange for the disclosure of inventions would result in profit for individuals at the expense and to the detriment of the public, which, as the source and protector of the grant to the inventor, has a right to expect that it shall be able, within a reasonable time, to enjoy the benefits of inventions which it has helped to make Successful.

(b) Considerable industrial activity is based on the certainty of the term of the patent monopoly, and of the date of expiration of the patent. Hence the extension of the patent term will tend to upset existing contractual relationships based upon the patent monopoly.

In many instances the terms of licensing agreements are based upon an amortization of investment which is to some extent predicated upon the existing statutory term of patents. Moreover, it frequently happens that developments are undertaken and industries built up in anticipation of the expiration of a patent term when the teaching of the patent becomes freely available to everyone. Licenses, in the absence of contrary agreements, terminate with the expiration of the patent.

(c) The Congress has shown by its actions in the past that it is reluctant to enlarge upon the grants of patents. Patents originally wer egranted for a term of 14 years. In 1836 provision was made for a conditional extension of 7 years, which proved unsatisfactory and was abolished in 1861, when the present 17-year term was set. Numerous bills proposing special extensions of individual patents have been introduced, but Congress has approved only an insignificant number (normally involving special situations such as design patents covering patriotic society insignia).

(d) In addition to the above general objections to extension of the term of the patents, the Department objects to this particular bill because while special consideration should be given to servicemen who were deprived of their civilian opportunities during their time of service, this legislation would single out only those servcemen who owned patents and would confer benefits on them which are not available to other men who were drawn into the military service from civilian life with great loss to themselves that cannot be repaired by this proposed bill. Under the 1928 patent extension law which was limited to patentees who were honorably discharged from the Armed Forces after World War I and who satisfied certain listed conditions, only nine requests for extensions were made and only six of these satisfied the conditions and resulted in actual extensions of patents. Aside from the serious potentiality of mapor administrative difficulties which would be involved in requiring the Government to make the determinations recited in Section 1 of the proposed bill (assuming that the number of applications under such a law would be consequential) and the litigation which would result from the refusal of a petition (see section 3 of the proposed bill), such an extension would constitute a singling out of a special type of property for gratuitous war insurance, a discriminatory procedure at best.

I have not secured the advice of the Bureau of the Budget as to the relationship of this bill or this report to the program of the President.

Sincerely yours,
WILLIAM C. FostFR,
Acting Secretary of Commerce.

DEPARTMENT of JUSTICE, Washington, July 21, 1947. Hon. EARL C. MICHENER, Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, Washington, D. C.

MY DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN : This is in response to your request for the views of this Department relative to a bill (H. R. 124) to provide for the extension of the term of certain patents in the case of persons who serve in the land or naval forces of the United States during the present war.

In summary, the bill would permit a person who served honorably in the armed forces between December 7, 1941, and December 31, 1946, to obtain an extension of any patent issued to him, which is unexpired and under which he still retains rights, for a period up to three times the length of his service in the armed forces between those dates.

Although the bill is somewhat similar to the act of May 31, 1928 (35 U. S. C. 40a-40d), which was enacted for the benefit of veterans of World War I, it differs from the latter in several respects. The act of 1928, unlike the instant bill, required the veteran to verify: (1) that he received no income from his patent between the declaration of war and the end thereof, or that his income therefrom was reduced by his service; (2) that at the time of his induction into the service he was making diligent effort to exploit the invention covered by his patent; and o that persons holding licenses or other rights under the patent consent to its extension.

Whether the bill should be enacted presents a question of legislative policy concerning which the Department has no suggestion.

The Director of the Bureau of the Budget has advised that there is no objection to the submission of this report. Sincerely yours,

DOUGLAS W. MCGREGOR,
The Assistant to the Attorney General.

NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL,
COMMITTEE ON ARTIFICIAL LIMBS,

Washington 25, D. C., May 8, 1947.
The Honorable EARL L. LEWIS,
Chairman, Subcommittee on Patent Legislation,
The Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives,

Washington, D. C. MY DEAR CONGRESSMAN LEWIS: The provisions of H. R. 124 and several similar bill before your committee were brought to my attention.

May I urge that you and your colleagues use all reasonable means to secure the early passage of H. R. 124 or a compromise of similar bills before you.

Former commissioned and enlisted men interviewed unanimously favor this legislation, regardless of whether or not they owned United States patents when they entered military service.

The consensus seems to be:

1. A patentee has relatively short patent protection during the time his patented invention is in use. A goodly portion of the usual 17 years is used for initial promotion and development.

2. During the 1, 2, to 5 years years spent in military service in World War II the value and momentum of the initial promotion and development were lost, and the period of patent protection was reduct by 1 to 5 years. Thus, the loyal patent holder, in addition to the usual sacrifices of wartime service, in realty, surrendered a portion of his patent rights.

3. Unlike most GI relief bills, this bill calls for no appropriation or budget.

4. The bill, while imposing no burden on taxpayers and in no way limiting the rewards and privileges due all GI's and all men, encourages, stimulates, and aids that group whose ingenuity and skill are in large part responsible for the quantity and quality of American industrial production.

5. The bill should be acted on favorably and soon. Five unproductive years have already been taken from GI's' patent tenures. In a few years many GI-held patents will expire. These will not be eligible to the provisions of the bill if its passage is long delayed. Very truly yours,

AUGUST DVORAK,
Formerly Commander (8) United States Naval Reserve,

File No. 54564.

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE,

Washington 25, June 10, 1947. Hon. EARL C. MICHENER, Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary,

House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: This letter is in further answer to your requesť dated March 31, 1947, for the views of the Department on H. R. 65, a bill to extend unexpired patents for periods equal to the length of time such patents shall have been in force during the war.

The Department opposes the extension of patents and therefore the enactment of the proposed bill for the following reasons:

(a) Extension of the 17-year monopoly agreed to and granted in exchange for the disclosure of inventions would result in profit for individuals at the expense and to the detriment of the public, which, as the source and protector of the grant to the inventor, has a right to expect that it shall be able, within a reasonable time, to enjoy the benefits of inventions which it has helped to make successful.

(b) Considerable industrial activity is based on the certainty of the term of the patent monopoly, and of the date of expiration of the patent. Hence the extension of the patent term will tend to upset existing contractual relationships based upon the patent mongpoly.

In many instances the terms of licensing agreements are based upon an amortization of investment which is to some extent predicated upon the existing statutory term of patents. Moreover, it frequently happens that developments are undertaken and industries built up in anticipation of the expiration of a patent term when the teaching of the patent becomes freely available to everyone. Licenses, in the absence of contrary agreements, terminate with the expiration of the patent.

(c) The Congress has shown by its actions in the past that it is reluctant to enlarge upon the grants of patents. Patents originally were granted for a term of 14 years. In 1836 provision was made for a conditional extension of 7 years, which proved unsatisfactory and was abolished in 1861, when the present 17-year term was set. Numerous bills proposing special extensions of individual patents have been introduced, but Congress has approved only an insignificant number (normally involving special situations such as design patents covering patriotic society insignia). Under the 1928 patent extension law which was limited to patentees who were honorably discharged from the armed forces after World War I and who satisfied certain listed conditions, only nine requests for extensions were made and only six of these satisfied the conditions and resulted in actual extensions of patents.

(d) In addition to the above general objections to extension of the term of patents, the Department objects to the enactment of this paricular bill because it provides for the extension of all patents in force during all or part of World War II without regard to whether or not rights under the patent were affected favorably or adversely by wartime conditions. Nor would it be a satisfactory answer to amend the bill to cover only those affected adversely. Aside from the serious potentiality of major administrative difficulties and litigation which would be involved in requiring the Government to make such a determination (assuming that the number of applications under such a law would be at all consequential), such an extension would constitute a singling out of a special type of property for gratuitous war insurance, a discriminatory procedure at best.

I have not secured the advice of the Bureau of the Budget as to the relationship of this bill or this report to the program of the President.

Sincerely yours,
WILLIAM C. Foster,
Acting Secretary of Commerce.

DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, Washington, D. C., June 18, 1947. Hon. EARL C. MICHENER, Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. MY DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN : This is in response to your request for my views relative to a bill (H. R. 65) to extend unexpired patents for periods equal to

the length of time such patents shall have been in force during the war.

The bill would provide that all patents unexpired on the date of its enactment shall be extended for a period equal to the period between December 7, 1941, and the official termination of the war; except that with respect to any patent granted after December 7, 1941, or any patent which without the benefit of the bill would have expired between that date and before the official termination of the war, the extension would be limited to a time equal to the period the patent shall have been in effect between December 7, 1941, and the termination of the war.

Under existing law (35 U. S. C. 40) a patentee is guaranted the exclusive right to make, use, and vend his patented item for a period of 17 years. With specified exceptions, such as extensions by private legislation and the privileges extended to certain patentee veterans of World War I (35 U. S. C. 40a), this has been the law with respect to the duration of patents since 1870 (16 Stat. 201), upon which the public in general has learned to place reliance in planning matters relative to patents.

Under the provisions of the instant bill, the expiration date of all existing patents would be undeterminable until the present war is declared officially ended. Such a state of uncertainty would appear to have an adverse effect on postwar development of the Nation's industry which would doubtless find it unreasonably difficult, if not impossible, to make definite plans for future use of patented inventions.

Moreover, the bill would bestow its benefits indiscriminately, at the expense of the general public and industry, without regard to whether the beneficiary patentees suffered injury or unusual prosperity as a result of the war.

An apparently unsatisfactory experiment in patent extensions was made by the Nation between 1836 (5 Stat. 124) and 1861 (12 Stat. 249) at which time the Congress deemed it advisable to discontinue the practice.

The bill under consideration would appear to be a departure from a longestablished and prudent policy with respect to the law of patents.

In view of the foregoing considerations, I am unable to recommend the enactment of the bill.

I have been advised by the Director of the Bureau of the Budget that there is no objection to the submission of this report. Sincerely yours,

Tom C. CLARK, Attorney General.

[Telegram]

ST. LOUIS, MO., April 25, 1947. SUBCOMMITTEE ON PATENTS, HOUSE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE,

Old House Office Building, Washington, D. C.: After due consideration, patent section of St. Louis Bar Association approves H. R. 65 in principle, except that extension of term of patent be limited to period of 5 years for all patents unexpired December 31, 1946, on patents granted or expired between December 7, 1941, and December 31, 1946, extension should be limited to period equal to that during which such patents were in effect after December 7, 1941, but in no case to exceed an extension of 5 years.

ST. LOUIS BAR ASSOCIATION,
JOHN H. SCHNEIDER,

Secretary, Patent Section,

STATEMENT PRESENTED BY P. J. FEDERICO, LAW EXAMINER, UNITED STATES PATENT

OFFICE, BEFORE THE SUBCOMMITTEE ON PATENTS, TRADE-MARKS, AND COPYRIGHTS OF THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY ON H. R. 65, H. R. 124, H. R. 1107, AND H. R. 1984-APRIL 2, 1947

This statement is submitted at the request of the subcommittee received several days ago. Lack of time has prevented the Patent Office or the Department of Commerce from ascertaining through the Bureau of the Budget the relationship of this legislation or this statement to the program of the President.

This statement presents the views which have been presented by the Commissioner of Patents on identical or similar bills.

The four bills under consideration all relate to the extension of the term of issued patents, either all patents now in force or recently expired, or certain classes of such patents.

The position of the Patent Office in the past has been opposed to proposals for extending the term of issued patents. This position is based upon the policy of Congress over a long period of time as well as upon other reasons.

The term of patents under our earliest patent laws was 14 years. Many inventors found this period too short and petitioned Congress for individual extensions which were granted in some cases by special acts. In view of this experience, Congress in the Patent Act of 1836 retained the term of patents as 14 years but provided for an extension of 7 years to be granted by the Patent Office on fulfillment of certain conditions. Experience with these extensions did not prove very satisfactory, and as a result of agitation to abolish them Congress did so in 1861. At the same time the term of patents was changed to 17 years as a sort of compromise or compensation for the elimination of the extension. The term has remained at 17 years since that date.

Numerous attempts have been made to obtain from Congress special extensions of these patents issued for 17 years. Many bills were introduced in each

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