Security Interests in Patents and Patent Applications?

Pauline Stevens

Abstract


There is a question mark in the title of this article because more questions than answers have been encountered in researching the topic. The relative certainty with which owners of furniture, equipment, accounts and most other personal property can obtain credit by granting a security in their property rapidly dissipates when the property in question is intellectual property. Owners of patents and other intellectual property find barriers to obtaining secured credit that are not faced by other property owners because there is a historical gap between the federal law protecting rights of intellectual property owners and state laws addressing secured transactions. The increasing importance of intellectual property to the economy of the United States (patent filings having increased by seventy percent since 1996

2 raises the visibility of this gap and urges consideration of changes in law. This would permit owners of intellectual property access to the same financing opportunities that are available to owners of other personal property. There seems to be no public policy that justifies the current situation.


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5195/tlp.2006.22

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