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New Limitations on Business Method Patents

Jim Ruttler, Patent Attorney

Posted Wednesday, February 11, 2009 by Jim Ruttler

The Federal Circuit recently limited patent eligible subject matter to that which satisfies the machine or transformation test. This test allows only inventions that are tied to a particular machine or article or that result in a physical transformation to be patented. Practically speaking, this means that not all business methods and software processes are patentable anymore unless they are tied to something physical or result in a physical transformation. This decision is currently being appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, so more guidance may come.

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