Mandatory Ethics Training For Patent Agents Is Long Overdue

Michael E. McCabe, Jr.ABA Model Rule for Minimum Continuing Legal Education, Continuing Legal Education, Patent Ethics, USPTO Rules of Professional Conduct4 Comments

What formal ethics training is required of a U.S. patent agent?  None. What minimal level of competency in ethics must a patent agent demonstrate in order to qualify for a license to practice patent law before the USPTO?  Again, the answer is “None.” For attorneys, ethics training is of considerable importance.  It starts in law school.  Accredited law schools require … Read More

Untying The IP Ethics Knot

Michael E. McCabe, Jr.Continuing Legal Education, IP Ethics, Legal Ethics, Litigation Ethics, MalpracticeLeave a Comment

Do you worry about ethics in your IP practice?  If not, you should.  There is way too much going on out there, and not knowing what is happening can leave you exposed to ethics and malpractice risk. If you can spare 90 minutes, tune in tomorrow from 1:00-2:30 pm EST for the ABA-IPL Landslide Webinar Series, entitled “Identifying and Resolving Ethical … Read More

CLE: Advice of Counsel Defense and Privilege Waivers In Patent Litigation Post-Halo

Michael E. McCabe, Jr.Continuing Legal EducationLeave a Comment

CLE courses seem to be popping up left and right about the impact of the Supreme Court’s 2016 Halo v. Pulse decision reversing the prior Seagate willful infringement standard.  The focus of these other CLEs seems to be more on the substantive law of willfulness and how the district courts have responded to the issue and applied the Halo standard. … Read More

ABA Recommends Mandatory Substance Abuse and Mental Health CLE

Michael E. McCabe, Jr.ABA Model Rule for Minimum Continuing Legal Education, Alcoholism, Continuing Legal Education1 Comment

The American Bar Association’s House of Delegates voted on Monday to change the ABA’s Model Rule for Minimum Continuing Legal Education to include a recommended one hour of CLE training every three years focused on substance abuse and mental health issues. Currently, only three jurisdictions–California, North Carolina and Nevada–require such courses.  The decision to amend the Model CLE Rule, which … Read More

USPTO Reciprocal Discipline Case Illustrates Flaw In Rules

Michael E. McCabe, Jr.Continuing Legal Education, Gross Misconduct, Moral turpitide, Office of Enrollment and Discipline, Reciprocal Discipline, USPTO Director DecisionsLeave a Comment

A recent disciplinary decision published by the USPTO Director illustrates a serious flaw in the Office’s rules governing reciprocal discipline.  In re Sanjeev Kumar Dhand, D2016-17 (USPTO Dir. Nov. 16, 2016). California Discipline The factual background of the Dhand case is eerily similar to our post from yesterday (link here).   This matter involves California-based patent attorney Sanjeev Kumar Dhand. Mr. … Read More

Lessons in Ethics: Lying About CLE Attendance Is Just So Wrong

Michael E. McCabe, Jr.Continuing Legal Education, Moral turpitide, Reciprocal Discipline1 Comment

An IP attorney continued his legal education the hard way.  He falsely represented to the California Bar that he had completed the mandatory minimum of 25 hours of continuing legal education.  In truth, he had completed zero hours of CLE.  The result: a one-year suspension. This matter involved California-based patent attorney Jens Edward Hoekendijk.  In order to remain as an … Read More

10th Annual Patent Law Institute CLE Program From PLI

Michael E. McCabe, Jr.Continuing Legal Education, Legal EthicsLeave a Comment

On May 5-6, 2016, Practicing Law Institute (PLI) will be conducting its 10th Annual Patent Law Institute.  The Institute will be held in San Francisco and also will be broadcast life via webcast. Registration is available at the following link. According to PLI, The Institute is designed to be of ultimate practice value to all three subgroups in the patent … Read More

IPO Hosting Webinar on Conflicts of Interest in Patent Prosecution

Michael E. McCabe, Jr.Conflicts of Interest, Continuing Legal Education, Patent EthicsLeave a Comment

On Wednesday, February 10, 2016, at 2:00 PM EST, I will be participating in a webinar hosted by IPO Chat Channel  on Conflicts of Interest in Patent Prosecution in light of the recent decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Court in Maling v. Finnegan, Henderson.  In Maling, a case of first impression, the court rejected the plaintiff’s argument that representing two … Read More