Attorneys are, by nature, skeptical and risk averse. I was repeatedly reminded of this over the last few months listening to discussions about using AI for patent practice and Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC) and Chris Coons’ (D-DE) latest effort to fix the patent eligibility mess (via the Patent Eligibility Restoration Act (PERA) of 2023). Amid the initial excitement over ChatGPT’s launch, IP attorneys rightfully turned their attention to the risks and pitfalls of using AI. However, I was surprised about the extent to which that became the focus of conversations regarding using AI for patent practice. Although I think – like in most other professional fields –patent attorneys have accepted the notion that AI will play a major role in their practice at some point in the distant future, the general consensus seems to be that the risks are too great, and the payoff is too small for that to happen anytime soon.
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