Obviousness Prior Art

News & Analysis as of

Hindsight Cannot be the Thread that Stitches the Prior Art Patches into the Claimed Invention

In Metalcraft of Mayville, Inc., v. The Toro Company, [2016-2433, 2016-2514] (February 16, 2017), the Federal Circuit affirmed a modified preliminary injunction against Toro’s continued infringement of U.S. Patent No....more

Sportbrain Sues Smartwatch Manufacturers, PTAB institutes IPR against Patent-in-Suit

Sportbrain Holdings LLC (“Sportbrain”) is a company that was previously engaged in the business of selling fitness trackers. Sportbrain recently sued eight smartwatch manufacturers for alleged infringement of its U.S. Patent...more

Just Because One Could Doesn’t Mean One Would

In Personal Web Technologies, LLC v. Apple, Inc., [2016-1174] (February 14, 2017), the Federal Circuit affirmed the Board’s claim construction but vacated the Board’s obviousness determination because the Board did not...more

Federal Circuit Again Reverses PTAB Obviousness Determination

In what is becoming a familiar basis for reversal of PTAB decisions, the Federal Circuit yet again reversed the PTAB for its failure to adequately explain the basis for combining multiple prior art references in support of...more

IPR Denied after Board Finds Asserted PCT Publication Not Entitled to Priority Application’s Filing Date under Pre-AIA 35 U.S.C. §...

The PTAB denied institution of an IPR based on patent owner’s challenge to the prior art status of a PCT publication that was asserted by the petitioner as pre-AIA 35 U.S.C. § 102(e) prior art in Forty Seven, Inc. v....more

The Removal of Matter from the Provisional Application is Significant to the Interpretation of the Claims in the Non-Provisional...

In MPHJ Technology Investments, LLC. v. Ricoh Americas Corp., [2016-1243] (February 13, 2016), the Federal Circuit affirmed the PTAB decision that claims 1-8 of U.S. Patent No. 8,488,173 were invalid on the grounds of...more

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...more

You’re So Vague: Federal Circuit Sends IPR Decision Back to PTAB for More Thorough Analysis

In a precedential decision, the Federal Circuit reaffirmed that the Patent Trial and Appeal’s Board (PTAB) is required to explicitly state motivations to combine prior-art references in claim rejections for obviousness. ...more

Court Rejects Theory Of Derivation Based On FDA Requirement

The Federal Circuit decision in Cumberland Pharmaceuticals Inc. v. Mylan Institutional LLC may be more interesting for what Mylan argued than for what the Federal Circuit decided. However, it could be an important decision...more

PTAB Finds Secondary Considerations Outweigh Evidence of Obviousness

In a final written decision, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) found that claims 1-20 of U.S. Patent No. 8,550,271 (the “’271 patent”) were not unpatentable because “compelling evidence of secondary considerations of...more

PTAB Provides A Possible Roadmap For Patent Owners To Successfully Argue Secondary Considerations Of Nonobvious

For just the third time ever, the Patent Trial and Appeals Board (“PTAB” or the “Board”) recently sided with a Patent Owner in an inter partes review (“IPR”) to find that evidence of secondary considerations of...more

In re Schweickert (Fed. Cir. 2017)

USPTO's Conclusion of Obviousness Rendered Primary Reference Unsatisfactory for Intended Purpose - In a nonprecedential opinion, the Federal Circuit vacated a decision by the Board and remanded the case on appeal from...more

PTAB Convinced by Secondary Considerations to Find Claims Non-Obvious in IPR

On January 19, 2017, the Board issued a final written decision in World Bottling Cap, LLC v Crown Packaging Technology, Inc. (IPR2015-01651) finding the challenged claims were not unpatentably obvious over the references...more

ClassCo, Inc. v. Apple, Inc.: A Reminder Of Obviousness Analysis Under KSR

In ClassCo, Inc. v. Apple, Inc. the Federal Circuit upheld a decision from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“the Board”), which invalidated several claims of ClassCo’s US Patent No. 6,970,695 (“the ’695 patent”) that...more

PTAB Maintains Obviousness Position after Remand

Addressing obviousness issues, including commercial success, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board) maintained its previous decision invalidating the claims of a patent related to coaxial cable connectors after the...more

IPR Estoppel Narrowed Even Further in D. Delaware Ruling

Despite the astounding success for patent challengers to date in IPR proceedings, are you one who has been worried about the effects of the IPR estoppel in future litigation? Has this concern dissuaded you from considering...more

Challenges in Amending Claims in an IPR: The Evolving Burden on a Patent Owner

Amending claims during an inter partes review (IPR) proceeding is not like amending claims during ex parte prosecution or a reexamination procedure. Generally, the patent owner has only one chance to propose substitute...more

PTAB Reversed on Issue of Diligent Reduction to Practice

Perfect Surgical Techniques (PST), Inc. owns US 6,030,384 (‘384). Olympus petitioned for Inter Partes review of ‘384 as anticipated or obvious over JP H10-33551 (JP ‘551). JP ‘551 published less than one year before the...more

PTAB Obviousness Decision Must Provide “Reasoned Explanation” For Motivation To Combine References

In a recent pair of decisions, the Federal Circuit has tightened the procedural and substantive requirements for Board decisions on obviousness. In Nuvasive, the Federal Circuit vacated a PTAB final decision that challenged...more

If the PTAB Doesn’t Say Why the Invention is Obvious, the Federal Circuit Has Nothing to Affirm

In re Nuvasive, Inc., [2015-1670] (December 7, 2016), the Federal Circuit vacated and remanded the PTAB Decision finding claims of U.S. Patent No. 8,361,156 invalid for obviousness. The Federal Circuit found that Nuvasive...more

In re Nuvasive (Fed. Cir. 2016)

In a precedential decision the Federal Circuit vacated and remanded a Patent Trial and Appeal Board decision invalidating claims from Nuvasive's U.S. Patent No. 8,361,156 in an inter partes review instituted on a petition by...more

PTAB Reverses Obviousness Finding After Remand

The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board) reversed its previous decision invalidating claims of a patent covering a coaxial cable connector after the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit found that the PTAB...more

Federal Circuit Broadly Affirms PTAB’s Determinations on Analogous Art, Motivation to Combine References and Obviousness of Claims

The level of deference the Federal Circuit gives to the Board’s IPR decisions has been surprising to many practitioners, considering the Court’s reputation for reversing district court decisions. The trend of deference to...more

Defendant Found To Infringe Valid Patent After Buprenorphine Trial.

Robinson, J. Findings of fact and conclusions of law following bench trial finding that the asserted claims of one patent are not obvious, the asserted claims of a second patent are obvious, and defendant infringes the valid...more

Failure to Let Patent Owner Address Unpatentability Arguments Relied on by the Board Violates Administrative Procedures

The Federal Circuit has ruled that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board cannot deny Patent Owner an opportunity to address portions of a prior art reference first discussed in Petitioner’s Reply, and then rely on those same...more

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