AIPLA Comments to NIST on March-In Rights Guidance

Written February 7, 2024

Arlington, VA. February 5, 2024 - The American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA) submitted comments to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in response to the Request for Information Regarding the Draft Interagency Guidance Framework for Considering the Exercise of March-In Rights.

AIPLA raises concerns regarding the proposed framework by NIST. The comments deem the framework unnecessary, ambiguous, and potentially hindering the development of federally funded technology. AIPLA argues that the existing Bayh-Dole Act (BDA) has a successful track record in fostering innovation and public benefit, and any departure from it would undermine the positive impacts it has had on the innovation ecosystem. AIPLA contends that the proposed framework introduces uncertainty, unpredictability, and a chilling effect on innovation, particularly in sectors like pharmaceuticals, where the front-end loaded nature of technology development requires significant investments.

Furthermore, AIPLA opposes the inclusion of pricing as a basis for government march-in rights, asserting that it contradicts the statutory language of the BDA and would undermine the predictability and certainty necessary for public-private collaborations. The comments emphasize that the proposed framework could disproportionately affect universities, start-ups, and small companies that rely heavily on government funding for early-stage research. AIPLA recommends the withdrawal of the proposed framework, emphasizing that any significant policy changes related to march-in rights should be left to Congress, and that the existing system has proven effective in fostering innovation and economic growth.


Please download the comments posted to the right of this page to view in full.