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USPTO’s claim construction not reasonable, anticipation rejection reversed

In a decision today, the Federal Circuit reversed the rejection of claims in a pending application as anticipated. The relevant limitation was "flexible polyurethane foam reaction mixture." The examiner and BPAI interpreted this to encompass any mixture that ultimately produces a flexible polyurethane foam. The alleged anticipatory reference initial produced a rigid foam, but then […]

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Summary judgment of noninfringement reversed: challenge to reliability of expert testimony waived

In a decision Friday, the Federal Circuit reversed a district court's grant of summary judgment of noninfringement. The court held the district court improperly made a factual determination regarding the reliability of an expert's test used to establish infringement. Based on statements made during summary judgment briefing and argument, the defendants could not argue the […]

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Declaratory judgment jurisdiction exists, sufficient corroboration of prior public use to invalidate

In a decision last week, the Federal Circuit upheld a district court's decision that a case or controversy existed providing subject matter jurisdiction and that the patent was invalid under 35 U.S.C. § 102(b) based on a public use more than a year before the patent's priority date. A licensee's decision to stop royalty payments […]

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Injunction against patentee’s assertions of infringement reversed, bad faith standard not met

In a decision last week, the Federal Circuit vacated a preliminary injunction after finding that the district court abused its discretion. The district court enjoined a patent owner from any future correspondence with any existing or potential customers of an alleged infringer (started by former employees of the patent owner), essentially stopping the patentee from […]

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Claims to a “method for mandatory arbitration resolution” not drawn to statutory subject matter

In the second of two decisions regarding the scope of patentable subject matter on Thursday, the Federal Circuit found claims in a patent application directed toward a "method for mandatory arbitration resolution" as not directed toward statutory subject matter under § 101. The USPTO had not addressed the statutory subject matter issue, rather the Federal […]

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If you just have the right to sue under a patent, don’t expect to actually be able to sue anyone

Yesterday, the Federal Circuit clarified the requirements for a party to attain standing to bring a patent infringement suit when the party does not hold all substantial rights in the patent. In defining what constitutes an "injury in fact" under the constitutional standing requirement, the court held that, when a party does not have all […]

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Federal Circuit clarifies standard for proving joint infringement

The Federal Circuit issued a decision today affirming a district court's finding of noninfringement when a defendant neither carried out all of the steps of a method claim nor was responsible for the actions of the parties that did carry out all steps to the method claim. In doing so, the court clarified the proper […]

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Claims to “signal” with no reference to physical structure not patentable subject matter

In the first of two decisions today regarding the scope of statutory subject matter, the Federal Circuit held that claims directed toward a "signal" were not statutory subject matter under § 101. Earlier, the USPTO allowed claims directed toward a method of embedding data in a signal; the rejected claims were the reverse: they were […]

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Plaintiff successfully skirts the minimum requirements for pleading, dismissal of complaint reversed

In a decision issued Friday, the Federal Circuit applied the Supreme Court's recent Twombly decision to the pleading requirements for patent and trademark causes of action. The court held that patent infringement plaintiffs need not specifically plead the claims infringed. Further, the court applied a similarly open standard to pleading trademark infringement cases. The pro […]

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“Ordinary observer” can be commercial buyer when buyer uses designed item as part of retail product

In a recent decision, the Federal Circuit affirmed a district court’s order granting summary judgment of non-infringement of two design patents. Specifically, the court acknowledged that the Supreme Court's decision in Gorham Co. v. White held that an "ordinary observer" for purposes of design patent infringement cannot be an expert. Nevertheless, in this case, the […]

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