35 U.S.C. 207: Domestic and foreign protection of federally owned inventions

Taken from the Ninth Edition of the MPEP, Revision 10.2019, Last Revised in June 2020

Current AIA Redline

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35 U.S.C. 207 Domestic and foreign protection of federally owned inventions.

  • (a) Each Federal agency is authorized to —
    • (1) apply for, obtain, and maintain patents or other forms of protection in the United States and in foreign countries on inventions in which the Federal Government owns a right, title, or interest;
    • (2) grant nonexclusive, exclusive, or partially exclusive licenses under federally owned inventions, royalty-free or for royalties or other consideration, and on such terms and conditions, including the grant to the licensee of the right of enforcement pursuant to the provisions of chapter 29 as determined appropriate in the public interest;
    • (3) undertake all other suitable and necessary steps to protect and administer rights to federally owned inventions on behalf of the Federal Government either directly or through contract, including acquiring rights for and administering royalties to the Federal Government in any invention, but only to the extent the party from whom the rights are acquired voluntarily enters into the transaction, to facilitate the licensing of a federally owned invention; and
    • (4) transfer custody and administration, in whole or in part, to another Federal agency, of the right, title, or interest in any federally owned invention.
  • (b) For the purpose of assuring the effective management of Government-owned inventions, the Secretary of Commerce authorized to -
    • (1) assist Federal agency efforts to promote the licensing and utilization of Government-owned inventions;
    • (2) assist Federal agencies in seeking protection and maintaining inventions in foreign countries, including the payment of fees and costs connected therewith; and
    • (3) consult with and advise Federal agencies as to areas of science and technology research and development with potential for commercial utilization.

(Added Dec. 12, 1980, Public Law 96-517, sec. 6(a), 94 Stat. 3023; amended Nov. 8, 1984, Public Law 98-620, sec. 501(11), 98 Stat. 3367; subsections (a)(2) and (a)(3) amended Nov. 1, 2000, Public Law 106-404, sec. 6(2), 114 Stat. 1745; amended Sept. 16, 2011, Public Law 112-29, sec. 20(j), 125 Stat. 284, effective Sept. 16, 2012.)