Opportunity to Comment on the Draft Guidance Framework for Federal Agency Exercise of March-In Rights


We would like to make you aware of an opportunity to provide feedback on a draft guidance framework designed to help federal agencies evaluate when it may be appropriate to exercise “march-in” rights under the Bayh-Dole Act.

March-in refers to a federal agency’s right to march-in and require the contractor, an assignee, or exclusive licensee of a federally funded subject invention to grant a license to a responsible applicant or applicants, upon terms that are reasonable under the circumstances, and if the contractor, assignee, or exclusive licensee refuses such request, to grant a license itself. Currently, an agency can exercise march-in rights only under four specific circumstances. To date, no agency has exercised its right to march-in.

The Request for Information (RFI) regarding the draft guidance framework, published in the Federal Register on December 8 by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), will be open for public comment for 60 days, closing on February 6, 2024.

Those interested in more details can also attend a NIST informational webinar on Wednesday, December 13, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Prior registration is not required.

The information received in response to this RFI will inform NIST and the Interagency Working Group for Bayh-Dole (IAWGBD) in developing a final framework document that may be used by an agency when making a march-in decision.


Questions? Contact Mojdeh Bahar, Associate Director for Innovation and Industry Services, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Gaithersburg, MD 20899, (301) 975–2340 or by email to mojdeh.bahar@nist.gov.

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