Techdirt is reporting that a small group of patent lawyers and investors are suing the US Secretary of Commerce in order to prevent the appointment of Margaret Peterlin to Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Deputy Director of the US Patent and Trademark Office. "According to the suit, filed Monday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Congress amended the Patent Act in 1999 to require that the Director and Deputy Director of the USPTO each have "professional experience and background in patent or trademark law." Peterlin's appointment, announced May 8, violates the statute because she "lacks the requisite professional experience and background," the suit said. [...] They are asking the court to order Gutierrez to dismiss Peterlin immediately and establish rules to assess what qualifies as a professional background and experience in patent or trademark law. They also want the court to order Gutierrez to appoint a replacement for Peterlin who fulfills those requirements."