News & Analysis as of

United States Patent and Trademark Office Appeals

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 -

Surviving Alice with an Appeal

by Fenwick & West LLP on

This third article in the “Surviving Alice” series examines how the USPTO’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board has responded to the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 2014 Alice decision. It also shows how applicants can use the PTAB’s...more

CAFC Finds Harmless Error in USPTO Reliance On Doctrine of Inherency

by Foley & Lardner LLP on

In Southwire Co. v. Cerro Wire LLC, the Federal Circuit upheld the USPTO decision rendered in an inter partes reexamination proceeding that found Southwire’s patent invalid as obvious. Although the court found that the USPTO...more

Federal Circuit Review - August 2017

by Knobbe Martens on

District Court Abused Discretion in Ignoring Federal Circuit Mandate to Reconsider Attorneys’ Fees Under Octane Fitness - In Adjustacam, LLC v. Newegg, Inc., Appeal No. 2016-1882, the Federal Circuit held that a district...more

CAFC Vacates USPTO Single Reference Obviousness Rejection For Inadequate Showing Of Expectation of Success

by Foley & Lardner LLP on

In a split decision with Judge Lourie dissenting, the Federal Circuit vacated an obviousness rejection that had been affirmed in an ex parte appeal to the USPTO Patent Trial and Appeal Board. The decision was rendered in In...more

Federal Circuit’s Amicus Brief in Oil States

Although the Federal Circuit already passed on the constitutionality of Inter Partes Reviews, considering some of its recent decisions, it appears that the Federal Circuit questions the competence of the PTAB to conduct...more

“A Reasonable Adjudicator Would have Wanted to Review this Evidence.”

In Ultratec, Inc. v. Captioncall, LLC., [2016-1706, 2016-1707, 2016-1708, 2016-1709, 2016-1710, 2016-1712, 2016-1713, 2016-1715, 2016-2366] (August 28, 2017), the Federal Circuit vacated and remanded Board decisions...more

In Precedential Decision, Board Says Packard, Not Nautilus, Governs Indefiniteness During Pre-Issuance Examination

by Jones Day on

...In a recent (and rare) precedential decision, the Board reaffirmed that the Supreme Court’s decision in Nautilus does not change “the USPTO’s long-standing approach to indefiniteness” in the context of pre-issuance...more

Fresh From the Bench: Precedential Patent Cases From the Federal Circuit

Today the Circuit agreed to hear en banc Nantkwest v. Matal,in which the panel had reversed a district court decision that had rejected the PTO’s position that applicants who appeal a district court must pay the PTO’s legal...more

The Washington Redskins Win Their Trademark Battle in Overtime

by Garvey Schubert Barer on

Simon Tam of the Asian rock band, The Slants, probably was not envisioning an 8-year-long legal battle when he chose the group’s name. Slant is known as a racial slur for Asians. Tam hoped to strip the term of its derogatory...more

News Alert: Precedential Patent and Trademark Order by the Federal Circuit

In June, the Federal Circuit panel ruled (over Judge Stoll’s dissent) that 35 U.S.C. § 145’s “all expenses of the proceedings” provision requires a patent applicant to pay attorneys’ fees to the USPTO when the applicant...more

Federal Circuit Concurring Opinion Asks Whether the Exception To One-Year Time Bar For Filing Inter Partes Review Petitions Via...

by Brinks Gilson & Lione on

In Nidec Motor Corp. v. Zhongshan Broad Ocean Motor Co., No. 2016-2321 (Fed. Cir. Aug. 22, 2017), a concurring opinion by Judges Dyk and Wallach questioned whether petitioners may use joinder to circumvent time bar...more

Fresh From the Bench: Precedential Patent Cases From the Federal Circuit

In Nidec v. Zhongshan, the entire panel affirms a determination of obviousness but two judges question whether § 315(c) of the AIA was improperly used to permit joinder as to a second Zhongshan petition filed after the...more

Expanded PTO Panels and Improper Joinder: The Federal Circuit Fires a Warning Shot

by Jones Day on

The Federal Circuit’s decision in Nidec Motor Corp. v. Zhongshan Broad Ocean Motor Co., (Fed. Cir. No. 16-2321), expresses a growing discomfort with the Patent Office’s practice of joinder and expanded panels....more

Federal Circuit Signals that Issue Joinder and Expanded Panels May Not Be Long for the IPR World

A fairly straightforward Federal Circuit decision today affirming a PTAB determination of obviousness provides insight into a potential reining in of the PTAB on two issues. In Nidec Motor Corp. v. Zhongshan Broad Ocean...more

Federal Circuit Says PTO Submissions can Waive Privilege to Future Communications

On July 20, 2017, the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in In re OptumInsight denied OptumInsight’s petition for writ of mandamus on privilege waiver. The court held that the District Court for the...more

Can Unexpected Results Make the Obvious Non-Obvious?

In Honeywell, Int’l Inc. v. Mexichem Amanco Holdings S.A., [16-1996] (August 1, 2017), the Federal Circuit vacated the USTPO’s reexamination decision invalidating claims 1–26, 31–37, 46–49, 58, 59, 61–68, 70–75, 80, and 81 of...more

Hutchinson Revisited Surname + Merely Descriptive Term May or May Not Be Registrable

In Earnhardt v. Kerry Earhhardt, Inc., [2016-1939] (July 27, 2017), the Federal Circuit vacated and remanded a TTAB decision dismissing Earnhardt’s opposition because it found that there was no likelihood of confusion between...more

Federal Circuit Finds Regeneron Transgenic Mouse Patent Invalid For Inequitable Conduct With Intent Inferred From Litigation...

by Foley & Lardner LLP on

In a 38 page decision with a 19 page dissent by Judge Newman, the Federal Circuit determined that Regeneron’s transgenic mouse patent is unenforceable due to inequitable conduct. The decision was rendered in Regeneron...more

Fresh From the Bench: Precedential Patent Cases From the Federal Circuit

In Regeneron v. Merus, a divided panel affirms a determination of unenforceability for violation of the duty of disclosure. What is interesting about the case is that neither the district court nor the majority reviewed...more

Karma’s a ^$#*! – Sanction for Litigation Misconduct Results in Finding of Intent to Deceive the USPTO

In Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. v. Merus N.V., [2016-1346] (July 27, 2017), the Federal Circuit affirmed final judgment that U.S. Patent No. 8,502,018 (which related to using large DNA vectors to target and modify...more

No Stay of Remedial Orders Even After PTAB Finds Claims Unpatentable

by Jones Day on

The ITC has dealt a significant blow to the use of Inter Partes Review as a defense to a Section 337 investigation. In an order issued this week, the Commission denied a request to stay remedial orders that are currently on...more

ITC Denies Suspension or Temporary Rescission of Remedial Orders after PTAB Invalidates Patents at Issue

In a first of its kind decision with important ramifications for patentees, the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) denied a petition to suspend or temporarily rescind remedial orders issued in Investigation No....more

PTO Erred by Not Identifying Algorithm Corresponding to §112, ¶ 6 Element Before Invalidating Claims

In IPCOM GmbH & Co. v. HRC Corp., [2016-1474] (July 7, 2017) the Federal Circuit found that the Board failed to conduct a proper claim construction of the “arrangement for reactivating the link” claim limitation, and...more

Win or Lose: Appellants of PTO Decisions in District Court Must Pay Attorneys' Fees

by Jones Day on

On June 23, 2017, the Federal Circuit held in NantKwest v. Matal that patent applicants seeking review of a decision from the United States Patent and Trademark Office ("PTO") to the district court must pay the PTO's legal...more

Supreme Court Holds Disparagement Clause Unconstitutional

by Perkins Coie on

In a much anticipated decision, the U.S. Supreme Court held in Matal v. Tam, 582 U.S. ___ (June 19, 2017) that a provision of the Lanham Act banning the registration of marks considered disparaging to “persons, institutions,...more

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