Bayh-Dole Act Law and Legal Definition

The Bayh-Dole Act of 1980 deals with intellectual properties developed out of a federal government funded research. This Act is officially known as the University and Small Business Patent Procedures Act. This Act empowers the universities and small businesses to control their inventions and other intellectual property that resulted from the government funding. In addition, the Act also permits the transfer of exclusive control over many government funded inventions to universities and business operations with federal contract for the purpose of further development and commercialization. Thus the Act aims to create a uniform patent policy among many federal agencies that fund research.

Major provisions of the Act are:

1. Non-profits, including universities, and small businesses to retain titles of innovations developed under federally-funded research programs;

2. Encouragement of Universities to collaborate with commercial concerns to promote the utilization of inventions arising from federal funding;

3. Universities are expected to file patents on inventions they elect to own;

4. Universities are expected to give licensing preference to small businesses;

5. The government retains a non-exclusive license to practice the patent throughout the world; and

6. The government retains march-in rights.