WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Representatives David Schweikert (AZ-06) and Susan Delbene (WA-01) introduced the Advancing America’s Interests Act, legislation that will help prevent the International Trade Commission (ITC) from being misused. The ITC has the power to ban products from entry into the U.S. marketplace and this power has been persistently abused by patent licensing entities, more commonly known as patent trolls, which buy up patents with the sole intent of using them to extract profits or stifle competition.
The legislation will help modernize the ITC and its processes to ensure that resources are properly directed toward advancing America’s interests and protecting our industries, workers, and consumers. Specifically, the bill:
Establishes an appropriate “domestic industry” standard, which would require that a U.S. company cannot be used as a plaintiff/complainant unless they voluntarily join a complaint requesting the ITC’s relief. This refined standard would also clarify that companies whose only industry is licensing (no research, development, or manufacturing) must show that its patent has led to the adoption or development of products that actually incorporate the patent.
Reaffirms the ITC’s public interest obligation. The ITC will be required to consider public interest as paramount to the exercise of its remedial powers (regarding an exclusion order) and affirmatively determine that any exclusion serves the public interest.