Patent Pilot Program

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The United States District Court, Central District of California, has been selected as one of fourteen federal district courts to participate in a ten-year pilot program designed to enhance expertise in patent cases among United States district judges. The national Patent Pilot Program, which was established pursuant to Pub. L. No. 111-349, began on Monday, September 19, 2011. After this date, participating courts will be able to begin transferring new patent cases to judges who have been designated as Patent Pilot Program judges.

Under the statute, the Chief Judge of each participating district must designate district judges to receive cases under the program. District Judges James V. Selna, John A. Kronstadt, S. James Otero, Andrew J. Guilford, Otis D. Wright II, and George Wu have volunteered to hear such cases in the Central District, and have been so designated by Chief Judge Audrey B. Collins.

Initial assignment of patent cases filed in the Central District of California will not change under the Pilot Program. New patent cases will continue to be assigned randomly upon filing in the same manner as other civil cases, and may be initially assigned to a judge who has not been designated to hear such cases under the Pilot Program. A non-participating judge who is randomly assigned a patent case may either keep the case or, within thirty days of the assignment of the case, decline to accept it, in which instance the case will be randomly assigned to one of the district judges designated to hear patent cases.

For more detailed information about the Patent Pilot Program, please refer to the Court’s General Order No.11-11.

Terry Nafisi
District Court Executive