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McKool Smith principal Scott Hejny provided commentary in the World IP Review article, “On Whose Authority?” Following the landmark decision of US v Artherx, which seems like a new era for the Patent Trial and Appeal Broad (PTAB), there are numerous questions around the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)’s leadership and functions. Scott agreed the “USPTO has created confusion around the question of who has the authority to consider requests for director review post-Arthrex.” He explained, “the current acting USPTO leader, Drew Hirshfeld, whose permanent role is commissioner for patents and who is very well-respected in the patent realm, announced that he would be making decisions concerning director review. But the USPTO hasn’t officially identified Hirshfeld as the acting director, which has led some parties to challenge his authority and to suggest that the current decision-making process suffers from the same shortcomings challenged in Arthrex.” Read the article here.

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