Patent-Eligible Subject Matter Patents

Patent-Eligible Subject Matter refers to the types of inventions that can be legally patented. The criteria for patentability varies depending on the jurisdiction. In the United States, for instance, if a... more +
Patent-Eligible Subject Matter refers to the types of inventions that can be legally patented. The criteria for patentability varies depending on the jurisdiction. In the United States, for instance, if a researcher discovers a naturally occurring substance, the substance itself cannot be patented. This issue was examined in a United States Supreme Court case, AMP v. Myriad, in regard to the patentability of human genes.  less -
News & Analysis as of

Judge Sullivan Holds “Substantially” the Same is Close Enough for Collateral Estoppel

On September 30, 2016, District Judge Richard J. Sullivan (S.D.N.Y.) granted the defendants’ motion to dismiss, holding one of the two asserted patents invalid under principles of collateral estoppel. Plaintiff Joao...more

AliceStorm Update for October 2016

The Federal Circuit's recent decision in McRO has been interpreted by many in the patent community as a further signal that the so-called "pendulum" is swinging back to a more favorable position for patentees. There is some...more

The Supreme Court’s Decisions Not to Hear Patent Cases Leaves Federal Circuit Decisions on Key Questions Intact

The Supreme Court recently declined to hear several patent cases, thus leaving the decisions by the Federal Circuit intact. Issues that were not taken up by the Supreme Court include (1) whether performing patented methods...more

A Silver Lining for Software Patents

Software patents play an important role in commercializing innovation in our increasingly digital world. The software inventions that scientists, developers, and engineers create are valuable and deserve protection. But since...more

System and Method Claims Directed to Abstract Idea Properly Bounced on 12(b)(6) Motion

In Fairwarning IP, LLC v. Iatric Systems, Inc., [2015-1985] (October 11, 2016), the Federal Circuit affirmed the district court’s dismissal of the complaint because U.S. Patent No. 8,578,500, claimed patent-ineligible subject...more

Guest Post -- Recent Software Case Gives Important Lessons for Biotech

On September 13, the Federal Circuit held that a series of ordered combination of steps related to lip-synch software did not constitute an abstract idea, and was subsequently patent eligible under §101 (McRO, Inc. v. Bandai...more

September Was a Good Month for Patent Eligibility in the District Courts

Anecdotally, there seems to be a loosening up regarding the application of § 101 by the District Courts. The 2014 Supreme Court decision in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank Int'l has been referred to as sounding a death knell for...more

FairWarning IP, LLC v. Iatric Systems, Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2016) - Rule-Based Data Processing Patent Held to Be Directed to...

On October 11, 2016, the Federal Circuit issued a precedential opinion in FairWarning IP, LLC v. Iatric Systems, Inc. affirming dismissal of a patent infringement suit brought by FairWarning holding that the asserted patent,...more

CG Technology v. DraftKings: District Court Stays Discovery Pending Motion to Dismiss Challenging Validity of Asserted Patents...

DraftKings filed a motion to stay discovery until the district court had an opportunity to rule on the a motion to dismiss. The motion to dismiss asserted that all of the ten patents-in-suit were invalid because they claimed...more

Federal Circuit invalidates Affinity’s content-delivery patents for failing to disclose implementation of claimed functions

The Federal Circuit recently decided two related cases concerning media content delivery patents1 owned by Affinity Labs of Texas, LLC. In both cases, the Federal Circuit held that the patents do not cover patent-eligible...more

Federal Circuit Affirms 101 Ineligibility of a Patent Claiming Detection of Unauthorized Access to Medical Information

A Federal Circuit Panel of Judges Lourie, Plager, and Stoll, has again affirmed a District Court decision to dispose of a patent dispute on the pleadings using Alice. In FairWarning IP, LLC, vs. Iatric Systems, INC., No....more

Judge Mayer’s Concurrence in IV Shows the Problem with Judicially Created Exceptions

The press is all abuzz with reactions to Judge Mayer’s concurring opinion bluntly stating that “claims directed to software implemented on a generic computer are categorically not eligible for patent.” Intellectual Ventures...more

MAZ Encryption Technologies: The Proper Way to Decide a Rule 12(c) Motion for Ineligible Subject Matter

Given the volume of district court decisions regarding Section 101, I typically don't find ones that stand out enough to warrant discussion. But last week's decision by Judge Stark in MAZ Encryption Technologies LLC v....more

MRCO v. Bandai Shows the Way to Broader Method Claims that Satisfy Alice and Mayo

It is said that one should cast a “wide net to catch the big fish.” In patent parlance, the wide net is the claims and the big fish are the competitors and customers. The computer/software industry and diagnostic industry,...more

A GUI Situation for CBM

Addressing the issue of subject matter eligibility for covered business method (CBM) patent jurisdiction under § 18(d)(1) of the America Invents Act (AIA), the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board) instituted CBM...more

Post-Grant Review May Be Used to Invalidate Patents Directed to Patent-Ineligible Subject Matter

Addressing patent-eligible subject matter issues, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board) issued a final written decision in a post-grant review (PGR) finding all claims of a newly issued patent unpatentable under...more

Federal Circuit Finds Claims Implemented on a General Purpose Cellphone Not Patentable

In Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International, the Supreme Court applied its two-part test for patent eligibility under 35 U.S.C. § 101 – i.e., (1) whether the claims are drawn on a law of nature, natural phenomenon or abstract...more

The High Court Takes The High Road On Patent Eligibility - The Supreme Court Refuses To Consider Patents Invalidated Under The...

The Supreme Court on October 3, 2016, denied certiorari in a number of patent cases, including four cases concerning subject matter eligibility in the wake of the Mayo and Alice decisions. The Mayo decision essentially held...more

Federal Circuit Review | September 2016

Claims Directed to Monitoring and Analyzing Data Held to Be Invalid under § 101 - In Electric Power Group, LLC v. Alstom S.A., Appeal No. 2015-1778, the Federal Circuit upheld the district court’s grant of summary...more

Inter Partes Review - Petitioner Estoppel under 35 U.S.C. §315(e)(1)

The Patent Trials and Appeals Board ruled that Petitioner could not maintain a subsequent proceeding with respect to the same claim on a ground that it “reasonably could have raised” in a prior proceeding despite Petitioner...more

Intellectual Ventures I LLC v. Symantec Corp. (Fed. Cir. 2016) - Just When You Thought the Federal Circuit Was Softening...

Intellectual Ventures I LLC ("IV") sued Symantec Corp. and Trend Micro (defendants) for infringement of various claims of three U.S. Patents (Nos. 6,460,050; 6,073,142; and 5,987,610). The District Court held the asserted...more

Accused Infringer Secures Patent Invalidity in Eyeglass Screw Case

Declaratory judgment actions can be a useful way for entities threatened with patent infringement to go on the offensive.  In one such matter in the District of Massachusetts, a declaratory judgment plaintiff turned the...more

Judge Mayer Finds that Section 101 Bars Patents on Software

In Intellectual Ventures v. Symantec, [2015-1769, 2015-1770, 2015-1771] (September 30, 2016), the Federal Circuit affirmed summary judgment that the asserted claims of the ‘050 and ‘142 patents were directed to ineligible...more

Patent Owner Asserts 101 Ineligibility Is Not a Defense That Can Be Raised in Litigation

On September 26, 2016, RPost Communications Limited (“RPost”) filed a brief in the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“Federal Circuit”), arguing that the district court did not have statutory authority...more

Software Patent Eligibility: Preemption Gets Starring Role at the Federal Circuit

The Supreme Court decision Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank, 134 S. Ct. 2347 (2014) pronounced, in no uncertain terms, preemption “drives” patent subject matter eligibility and its exceptions. But after Alice, it appeared preemption’s...more

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