Tag Archives: patent

Federal Circuit looks to provisional patent application in determining claim scope

Differences between a provisional patent application and a nonprovisional application claiming priority to the provisional application may inform claim construction, following the Federal Circuit’s recent decision in MPHJ Tech v. Ricoh.[1] In MPHJ Tech, the Federal Circuit affirmed an inter partes review decision in which the Patent and Trademark Appeal Board (PTAB) found claims of … Continue Reading

When Obvious Isn’t Obvious: Personal Web Technologies

On Valentine’s Day 2017, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit vacated the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s conclusions of obviousness in Personal Web Technologies, LLC due to insufficient analysis in the board’s decision. Judge Taranto, joined by Judge Chen and Judge Stoll, explicitly asserted the court’s role in enforcing the principles of administrative … Continue Reading

Licensees Stymied by Sovereign Immunity Both in Federal Court and at PTAB

  Licensees Covidien LP, Medtronic PLC, and Medtronic, Inc., failed to obtain any relief, at least so far, in federal court or at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) because of parallel holdings that patent owner University of Florida Research Foundation, Inc. (UFRF), is entitled to Eleventh Amendment immunity. University of Florida Research Foundation, … Continue Reading

The Continuing “Evolution” of Alice: a GUI Example

On January 18, 2017, the Federal Circuit, in Trading Technologies International, Inc. v. CQG, Inc., No. 2016-1616 (Fed. Cir. Jan. 18, 2017) (NEWMAN, J.), issued a non-precedential decision affirming the district court’s holding that claims directed to “[a] method for displaying market information relating to and facilitating trading of a commodity being traded in an … Continue Reading

Federal Circuit Provides Guidance on Divided Infringement, Inducement of Infringement, and Indefiniteness

Patent owners will applaud the Federal Circuit’s latest pronouncement on divided infringement, inducement of infringement, and claim definiteness under 35 U.S.C. § 112. Eli Lilly & Co. v. Teva Parenteral Medicines, Inc., Appeal No. 2015-2067 (Fed. Cir. Jan. 12, 2017). On all three issues, the opinion, authored by Chief Judge Prost and joined by Circuit Judges … Continue Reading

Biotech Patent Dispute Between Academics That Is Far From Academic

On December 6, 2016, the parties to the complex and soon-to-be departed world of patent interferences orally argued their positions on motions in what has been described as the “biotech trial of the century” and as “the biggest biotech patent case in memory.”[1] The parties’ oral arguments mirrored their motions, the most important of which … Continue Reading

Patent Invalidity Offense: When Is District Court Action the Better Option Over IPR, PGR or CBM?

It’s Monday morning after the Thanksgiving holiday. Easing back into the workweek with the lingering effects of turkey, stuffing and a miraculous Ohio State victory still sapping my brain, I open the court docket report. Ordinarily, there is not much in these reports to catch my eye under these conditions, but today I saw a … Continue Reading

Patent Exhaustion Case Could Have Enormous Impact on Multinational Businesses

Earlier this year, the Federal Circuit ruled en banc in Lexmark v. Impression,[1] the most significant exhaustion ruling since the Supreme Court’s Quanta decision.[2] In response to Impression’s cert. petition, the Supreme Court called for the views of the Solicitor General. The U.S. has now filed its brief, recommending cert. be granted on both questions. … Continue Reading

Not Dat Function, Dis Function

  When we talk these days about the role of functionality in determining the copyrightability of a useful article, we are generally talking about the 10 different separability tests currently duking it out at the Supreme Court in the Varsity Brands case. Our posts on that case are here, here and here. These tests enforce … Continue Reading

Federal Circuit Panel Splits in Important Decision Regarding Its Jurisdiction over Institution of IPRs

In Husky Injection Molding Systems Ltd. v. Athena Automation Ltd., Appeal Nos. 2015-1726, 1727 (Sept. 23, 2016), the panel majority, consisting of Judges Lourie (the opinion’s author) and Stoll, differed sharply with dissenting Judge Plager over the court’s jurisdiction to review the PTAB’s institution of an inter partes review. This decision could have broad implications. … Continue Reading

Important Federal Circuit Decision Provides More Clues on Software Eligibility

On Sept. 13, 2016, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit gave applicants and patentees another tool with which to argue for the patent eligibility of their software innovations, finding that McRO’s lip-synchronizing patents were eligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101.  Judge Reyna, joined by Judges Taranto and Stoll, determined that representative claim 1 … Continue Reading

High Court Relaxes Standards for Enhanced Damages in District Court Patent Litigation

On June 13, 2016, in a much-anticipated joint holding in Halo/Stryker, [1] the Supreme Court unanimously overturned the Federal Circuit’s rigid test for willful infringement under Seagate and conferred discretion on district courts, “narrowed” by nearly 200 years of judicial practice, to award enhanced damages to patent owners under 35 U.S.C. § 284 for “egregious … Continue Reading

Apportioning for the Standard When Valuing Standards-Essential Patents

Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), a national research organization of Australia, recently filed a petition for certiorari with the Supreme Court. CSIRO presents the following question: Is the Federal Circuit’s promulgation of rigid legal rules to control the weight to be given by the trier of fact to evidence of patent infringement damages … Continue Reading

Court Decides that ANDA Approved Before Patent Issued Cannot Infringe 35 U.S.C. § 271(e)(2)(A)

Although the Hatch-Waxman Act was passed by Congress decades ago, it still produces new questions. Despite vigorous argument by the patent owner, a district court dismissed a count alleging that the ANDA-filer infringed under 35 U.S.C. § 271(e)(2)(A), leaving in place the unchallenged count for infringement under § 271(a). Ferring B.V. v. Actavis, Inc., Civil Action No. … Continue Reading

Supreme Court to Consider Patent Laches in Wake of Copyright Laches Decision

When we last discussed patent laches here, the Federal Circuit had voted to rehear, en banc, SCA Hygiene Products’ patent infringement claim, which invoked a laches defense. At that time, the Supreme Court had recently decided in Petrella v. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.[1] that laches was not a defense to a copyright infringement claim brought within the … Continue Reading

Major 101 Decision – Enfish v. Microsoft

Today in Enfish v. Microsoft, the Federal Circuit held software claims patent eligible, reversing the district court’s grant of summary judgment on 101. This is a major decision because it is only the second since Alice where the Federal Circuit has held patent claims eligible (DDR being the first). Further, the case heavily emphasizes that … Continue Reading

USPTO Releases Next Iteration of Examiner Guidance on Patent Subject Matter Eligibility

On May 5, 2016, the USPTO released an update to its examiner guidance on patent subject matter eligibility. The update includes a new set of life science examples, a memorandum to the patent examining corps with instructions on formulating subject matter eligibility rejections and responding to applicants’ replies, an index of eligibility examples, and an … Continue Reading

Amended PTAB Rules to Take Effect on May 2, 2016

On May 2, 2016, amended rules governing post-grant proceedings before the Patent and Trial Appeal Board (“PTAB”), including inter partes review (“IPR”), post-grant review (“PGR”), and covered business methods (“CBM”), will take effect. The rules apply to all currently pending and future proceedings before the PTAB. The primary amendments are: Testimonial Evidence Permitted in Patent … Continue Reading

Patent Drafting Post-Alice: Broadly Define the Problem, and Narrowly Claim the Solutions

The notion of strategic claim drafting, which experienced patent practitioners understand, is all about writing specific, narrowly defined claims to cover the strategically important “choke points” in a value chain.[1] The rationale is that the narrowness of the claim makes it less vulnerable to a validity attack on prior art grounds. In the discussion below, … Continue Reading

Patent Office Updates Rules for Post-Grant Proceeding Duty of Candor

The United States Patent and Trademark Office recently amended 37 C.F.R. § 42.11 to include a certification requirement similar to that of Rule 11. Section 42.11 prescribes the duty of candor owed to the Patent Office. As noted in the Federal Register, the Office sees the new rule as preventative in nature. Despite comments expressing … Continue Reading

Federal Circuit Denies Rehearing on Whether Section 337 Includes Digital Imports

The Federal Circuit debate begun in Suprema, Inc. v. International Trade Commission, 796 F.3d 1338 (Fed. Cir. 2015) (en banc), continued with the court’s denial of rehearing en banc in ClearCorrect Operating, LLC v. International Trade Commission, No. 2014-1527(Fed. Cir. Mar. 31, 2016) (Prost, C.J., concurring, and Newman, J., dissenting). In Suprema, the en banc … Continue Reading
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