UL Patent Policy
The following is UL's patent policy for UL Standards.
1.1 UL Standards Patent Policy - The following is UL's patent policy for all UL Standards (including UL/ANSI Standards).
1.1.1 Inclusion of Patents in UL Standards - There is no objection in principle to drafting a proposed UL Standard in terms that include the use of an essential patented claim (one whose use would be required for compliance with that standard) if it is considered that technical reasons justify this approach.
18.104.22.168 Timely Notification to UL - Participants in the UL Standards development process are encouraged to bring patents with claims believed to be essential to the attention of UL. If a proposal author, STP member or individual or entity commenting on a proposed, revised or approved UL Standard believes that a proposed, revised or approved UL Standard contains any essential patent claim(s) that is not already covered by an existing assurance, that author, STP member, individual or entity shall notify the STP and UL of the possible existence of such essential patent claim(s). If UL receives a notice that a proposed, revised or approved UL Standard may require the use of such a patent claim(s), the procedures in this policy shall be followed. UL does not have any duty to investigate any such claims of essentiality. UL's only duty is to request a patent statement consistent with section 1.1.2 of this policy from the patent holder and include a note in the standard per 1.1.4 following receipt of the statement of assurance from the patent holder.
1.1.2 Statement from patent holder - UL shall seek from the patent holder or a party authorized to make assurances on its behalf, in written or electronic form, either:
- a general disclaimer to the effect that such party does not hold and does not currently intend holding any essential patent claim(s); or
- a statement that a license to such essential patent claim(s) will be made available to applicants desiring to utilize the license for the purpose of implementing the standard either:
- without compensation and under reasonable terms and conditions that are demonstrably free of any unfair discrimination; or
- under reasonable terms and conditions that are demonstrably free of any unfair discrimination.
Such assurance shall indicate that the patent holder (or third party authorized to make assurances on its behalf) will include in any documents transferring ownership of patents subject to the assurance, provisions sufficient to ensure that the commitments in the assurance are binding on the transferee, and that the transferee will similarly include appropriate provisions in the event of future transfers with the goal of binding each successor-in-interest.
The assurance shall also indicate that it is intended to be binding on successors-in-interest regardless of whether such provisions are included in the relevant transfer documents.
1.1.3 Record of statement - A record of the patent holder's statement shall be retained in the files of UL, and with respect to UL/ANSI Standards, shall be made publicly available on ANSI's Letter of Assurance repository.
1.1.4 Notice - Regardless of whether UL receives from a patent holder the assurance set forth in 1.1.2 (2) or not, the standard shall include a note substantially as follows:
NOTE - The user's attention is called to the possibility that compliance with this standard may require use of an invention covered by patent rights.
By publication of this standard, no position is taken with respect to the validity of this claim or of any such claim(s) or of patent rights in connection therewith. If a patent holder has filed a statement of willingness to grant a license under these rights on reasonable and nondiscriminatory terms and conditions to applicants desiring to obtain such a license, then details may be obtained from UL.
1.1.5 Responsibility for identifying patents - Neither UL nor ANSI are responsible for identifying patents for which a license may be required by a UL or UL/ANSI Standard (as applicable) or for conducting inquiries into the legal validity or scope of those patents that are brought to their attention.
For questions on the UL Patent Policy, contact Tricia Sena, Standards Operations (Patricia.A.Sena@ul.com).