Federal Employee Invention Rights – Time to Legislate

It is the purpose of this article to review judicial standards applicable to the determination of rights in inventions made by employees of the federal government, to note statutory provisions affecting the problem, to examine the content and effect of the present Executive program for determining such rights, to review and evaluate two fundamental and conflicting theories in this field, and to propose legislation establishing appropriate standards and procedures. This topic is believed to have general interest because, in addition to the urgencies suggested above, the problem touches some of the basic legal philosophy underlying the United States patent system.