United States Patent and Trademark Office

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is an agency of the United States Department of Commerce that serves a fundamental role in the U.S. intellectual property system by issuing patents and registering trademarks.... more +
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is an agency of the United States Department of Commerce that serves a fundamental role in the U.S. intellectual property system by issuing patents and registering trademarks.    less -
News & Analysis as of

McRo, Inc. v. Square Enix, Inc. (C.D. Cal. 2014)

Note: This coverage of a district court case from last year provides an overview of the patented invention, as well as the decision currently being appealed to the Federal Circuit. In a subsequent article, we will review the...more

Federal Circuit Strikes Final Blow to Celebrex Patent

In 2008, the Federal Circuit determined that claims 1-4 and 11-17 of U.S. Patent No. 5,760,068 were invalid for obviousness-type double patenting (OTDP) over a related parent patent, in part because the ‘068 patent was filed...more

The Status of Business Method Patents

Business method patents have a checkered history. They were once very much in vogue—numerous such patents issued, and many of them were litigated. Then, about two years ago, Congress enacted a special procedure that made it...more

Federal Circuit Revisits and Recasts Means-Plus-Function Claim Interpretation

An en banc decision from the Federal Circuit last week overruled a line of cases governing the interpretation of functional claim language, calling into question how courts, the PTO, and industry will treat such language in...more

Design Patents and the Hague Agreement

Design patents protect the visual characteristics or aspects (e.g., appearance, ornamentation) of any article of manufacture. A design patent can be used to prevent competitors from producing similar items (e.g., knock-offs)...more

Newsflash, Politico: ‘Patent Death Squad’ Alive and Well

Politico, the popular political journalism publication, recently ran the story “Patent Reform Advocates: PTO Process Not Patent ‘Death Squad.’” The story was based on a blog post by patent reform advocate Unified Patents. ...more

Federal Circuit Reverses Unreasonable PTAB Claim Construction, Upholds Idle Free Standard for Motions to Amend

The Federal Circuit decision in Microsoft Corp. v. Proxyconn, Inc., addressed several important issues relating to post-grant patent trials conducted by the USPTO Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), including the PTAB’s...more

Williamson Decision Will Encourage Patent Defendants to Challenge Software Claims

In Williamson v. Citrix Online, announced on June 16, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled in a partially en banc opinion that claims expressed in terms of functionality can be subject to statutory requirements...more

Selling Products Outside the US? If Yes, New Patent Laws are Available to Streamline International Design Protection

In recognition of ever growing cross-border sales, the U.S. recently expanded its design protection laws to make it easier to file a single application in multiple jurisdictions. Read on if you deal with products that could...more

Catching-Up On House Judiciary Committee’s Revised Innovation Act

Recently the House Judiciary Committee voted 24-8 to approve a revised version of the Innovation Act. As we previously discussed, the Innovation Act was re-introduced in the House earlier this year in the same form approved...more

Case Dismissed After Claims Upon Which Lawsuit Was Initiated Were Cancelled During Re-Examination

Defendant Extended Disc North America, Inc. ("EDNA") filed a motion for summary judgment of non-infringement and invalidity, and, alternatively, a motion to dismiss against plaintiff Target Training International, Ltd.'s...more

Rebalancing Your IP Portfolio

Financial advisors often advise their clients to maintain a balanced investment portfolio. Occasionally these advisors recommend rebalancing the investments within a portfolio to account for changes in market...more

Purple-Colored Fabric Tags Attached to Remote Control Found Inherently Distinctive

News flash, last Friday the USPTO approved for publication a non-traditional trademark that I’ve seen in real life before. Let’s just say it is attached to one of our many remote control devices that I’ve had to dig out from...more

The One Year Anniversary: The Aftermath of #AliceStorm

It's been one year since the Supreme Court's decision in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank. On its face the opinion was relatively conservative, cautioning courts to "tread carefully" before invalidating patents, and emphasizing that...more

Going YARD with the VARO Brand for Batters?

Time spent with my boys in Omaha at the College World Series is hard to beat. Although, last year, Father’s Day weekend was hard to beat too. And, the archives indicate five years ago was pretty wonderful as well. Basically,...more

USPTO Pilots Expedited Patent Appeal Program But at What Price?

In a June 15, 2015 Federal Register Notice, the USPTO announced the Expedited Patent Appeal Pilot program, which will run until 2,000 ex parte patent appeals are expedited under the program, or until June 20, 2016, whichever...more

An Overview, A Summary And An Update To The Latest Patent Reform

Just four years ago in 2011, President Obama signed the America Invents Act (AIA) into law. Since the enactment of the AIA, there has continued to be steady pressure for further reform. In 2013, the Innovation Act was...more

New USPTO Expedited Patent Appeal Pilot Program

On June 15, 2015, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) issued Notice in the Federal Register announcing a new pilot program, the Expedited Patent Appeal Pilot. Under the program an appellant may have an ex...more

Hope for Computer-Related Patents

“Let's be clear: if all of these claims, including the system claims, are not patent-eligible, this case is the death of hundreds of thousands of patents, including all business method, financial system, and software patents...more

Federal Circuit En Banc Decision in Williamson v. Citrix Overrules Long Line of Precedent Regarding Functional Claiming and § 112,...

On June 16, 2015, the Federal Circuit issued its decision in Williamson v. Citrix Online, overruling en banc a long line of precedent regarding functional claiming and affirming a District Court decision finding asserted...more

Federal Circuit Reverses Patent Trial and Appeal Board Claim Construction as Unreasonable

Although the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has held that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Patent Trial and Appeal Board has the authority to use the broadest reasonable interpretation claim construction...more

Patent Trial and Appeal Board Grants Rare Motion to Amend Claims in Inter Partes Review

On June 5, 2015, a three-judge panel at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“PTAB”), granted a motion to amend in an inter partes review (“IPR”) proceeding, ruling that the patentee Neste Oil Oyj (“Neste”) could amend the...more

Intellectual Property Alert: USPTO Announces Expedited Patent Appeal Pilot Program

Yesterday, the United States Patent and Trademark Office announced the “Expedited Patent Appeal Pilot” to provide a temporary basis for an applicant to have an ex parte appeal to the Patent Trial and Appeal Board accorded...more

Interim Guidance Status Check

As of Tuesday, June 16th, we have been living with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's "2014 Interim Guidance on Patent Subject Matter Eligibility" ("Guidance") for six months. Although the USPTO subsequently issued some...more

Should You File Trademark Applications on Your Own?

A recent article published by World Trademark Review talked about the pros and cons of individuals filing their own trademark applications without the benefit of experienced trademark counsel. First and foremost, individuals...more

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