Microsoft voices support for passage of the Innovation Act

Thursday’s overwhelming bipartisan House vote to pass the Innovation Act (H.R. 3309) marks a significant milestone toward enactment of common-sense reforms to curb abusive patent litigation. Abusive patent lawsuits create a heavy burden on the U.S. economy — slowing innovation, undermining competitiveness and stunting economic growth.

H.R. 3309 addresses this urgent problem by striking a balance that deters bad actors while protecting intellectual property rights. At its core, the bill reduces the financial incentives for rogue players to pursue abusive patent litigation through calibrated measures that provide for fee shifting, curbing discovery abuse, requiring precision in claims of infringement, and promoting transparency in patent ownership. 

Microsoft applauds the House action and Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and his committee for their leadership. We will continue to work with lawmakers toward enactment of legislation that reduces abusive litigation, improves America’s patent system, and protects the 55 million jobs supported by IP-intensive industries.

About the Author

Deputy General Counsel & Corporate Vice President, Legal and Corporate Affairs, Microsoft

Horacio Gutiérrez is Corporate Vice President and Deputy General Counsel in charge of the Microsoft products and services group (PSG). In this role, he oversees the team that provides front-line legal support to all of Microsoft's engineering and marketing teams, including Devices and Studios, Applications, Services and Dynamics, Operating Systems, Cloud and Enterprise, and Marketing. Previously, Horacio led the worldwide intellectual property group, including the development, maintenance and enforcement of the company’s IP portfolio, inbound and outbound patent licensing, and IP legal and public policy strategy. Prior to his eight years leading the IP group, Mr. Gutiérrez was based in Paris, where he was Microsoft's associate general counsel for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Mr. Gutiérrez started his career at Microsoft in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. at the company’s Latin American regional headquarters, where he was responsible for commercial and corporate matters for the region.