23 January 2006
Patent Lawyers Suck.
As I've noted before that criminal lawyers who run our nation's system of criminal justice, indeed, even the criminal courts themselves, sometimes make mistakes. But, according to a recent study, 98% of patents contain mistakes. Given that one generally doesn't have a true adversarial proceeding to obtain a patent, it is hard to blame anyone but the attorneys preparing them for the errors (indeed, without the quasi-adversarial supervision of the PTO examiners who routinely give applicants a hard time, it would almost surely be worse). Perhaps some of them are "harmless errors," I hope so, but it certainly isn't an impressive statistic, and the consequences that come from defective patents being approved (or good patents being denied or struck down in litigation because they are defective) can be in the multi-million dollar range. No wonder malpractice insurance is so expensive for patent lawyers.
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No, it's usually due to the clients not wanting to pay us to fix the problems. There's a point where it's 'good enough' for them. Think about it. We bill 250/hr at a minimum.
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