The Hilton-Davis case, mentioned several places in the text as well as in the Preface of this work, is a most important case before the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. It was hoped that critical guidance in the application of the Doctrine of Equivalents would be provided by the en banc decision of the CAFC before this work went to press. Unfortunately, at this time, though arguments have been heard, no decision has as yet been issued.
On another subject, significant changes in our patent laws have been enacted arising from the GATT Uruguay Round, implementing legislation signed by the president on December 8, 1994. Most of the provisions of this legislation will take effect on January 1, 1996. However, there is a very significant part of the legislation--the provisions relating to patent term and provisional applications--that will take effect six months after the signing of the bill, on June 8, 1995. The changes and their effective dates are discussed below.
In accordance with the GATT Uruguay Round agreement that patents be available without discrimination as to the place of invention, Section 104 of the Patent Law has been amended to provide that evidence of inventive activity in the territory of a World Trade Organization (WTO) member country may be treated the same as inventive activity in the United States. Should discovery procedures in a WTO member country be unable to produce information to the extent it could be obtained in the United States, the commissioner, court, or other authority is to draw