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Abstract

On March 16, 2013, the United States implemented the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA). Enactment of the AIA substantially enhances the value of U.S. provisional and non-provisional patent applications (PPAs and NPAs) to foreign applicants. Here, the authors endeavor to outline the procedural and strategic considerations facing foreign applicants for PPAs by offering a brief survey of protective foreign patent application law, followed by an analysis of the modern benefits of PPA filing in the post-AIA world. The analysis here suggests that the traditional benefits to foreign filers of PPAs encompassing term extension, cost-efficiency and secrecy have been amplified by the establishment of a first-to-file priority system in the United States.

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