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Koninklijke Philips Electronics NV

Moatz, Harry
From: Sent: To: Cc: Subject:
jack. e.haken@...
Friday, December 19, 2003 12:06 PM
ethicsrules comments
matthieu.van.kaam@...; m.marion@...; jack. slobod@...
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking 68 Fed Reg 69442

This comment is submitted on behalf of Koninklijke Philips Electronics NV (KPENV). KPENV and its related companies are among the largest customers of the USPTO. We typically file in excess of 3000 new U.S. utility patent applications per year.

1. Philips believes that the proposals for mandatory continuing education (CLE) set fort:
in sections 11.12 & 13 of the proposed rules are unduly and unnecessarily burdensome
inasmuch as and to the extent that they fail to coordinate with and take into
consideration the concurrent CLE requirements of other bars and jurisdictions. We believe,
that most practitioners admitted to the USPTO are already subject to some form of
mandatory state CLE supervision and that the USPTO should make every effort to
provide an avenue that allows concurrent fulfillment of state and USPTO requirements.

We propose that the rule be amended to allow a practitioner to claim mandatory CLE credit from the USPTO for any state bar sanctioned CLE program based upon the practitioner's representation that the course content is reasonably related to the specialized practice of patent law and/or to relevant ethical issues.

2. We believe that the provisions of Section 11.13(g)(4) that make law firms, professional corporations and corporate law departments ineligible to become approved CLE sponsors are arbitrary, unfair and wholly unsupported by any facts on the public record. We believe that a significant portion of the mandatory State CLE taken by our employees is presently in the form of state approved in?house and/or law firm sponsored courses and that these courses provide specialized insights and experiences which are unavailable from courses offered by the so?called commercial educators. These courses which are usually given either on?site or in close proximity to our offices are also far more efficient and effective than commercial courses which generally require travel by the participants.

Certain representatives of the USPTO have informally suggested to professional groups that Section 11.13(g)(4) is being proposed because the Office does not believe that it will have the necessary resources to oversee the large number of sponsorship requests that it foresees being submitted if the excluded entities were eligible to be sponsors. If these comments reflect USPTO thinking, we note that there has been no reported agency fact finding to support this conclusion and that, even if true, it does not support the arbitrary assignment of business to certain industry segments. We believe that the burden of approval review could be greatly reduced if the Office accepts our suggestion to automatically grant CLE credit to state bar approved CLE courses. Absent this change, we believe that an impartial lottery system is the only fair way to allocate scarce review resources among applicants who seek to be approved as sponsors.
`
Philips Intellectual Proper' & Standards
345 Scarborough Road
Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510 USA
Tel: +1 914 333 9650; Fax: +1 914 332 0615;
Mobile: +1 203 512 0139
E?Mail: jack.e.haken@...
Intranet: pww.ips....
Internet: www.ip....
3. We believe that the provisions of proposed section 11.806 would give the USPTO unwarranted and abusive powers to investigate the private lives and affairs of practitioners. The USPTO has no experience or expertise in reviewing the questions of sexual conduct and personal relationships prohibited by this section. The matter is best left to state statutes and state bar rules.

Regards,
Jack Haken
Vice President - U.S. Philips Corporation
Philips Intellectual Property & Standards
P.O. Box 3001
Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510?8001 USA
Courier/visiting address:

Phillips Intellectual Property & Standards
345 Scarborough Road
Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510 USA
Tel: +1 914 333 9650; Fax +1 914 332 0615;
Mobile: +1 203 512 0139+
E-Mail: jack.e.haken@...
Intranet : pww.ips....
Internet : www.ip....


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