On Monday the Supreme Court heard arguments in the Arthrex case (Nos. 19-1434; -1452; -1458) (click link for transcript) regarding whether PTAB judges are principal officers, who must be appointed by the president and confirmed, or whether they are inferior officers who can be appointed by department heads. The Federal Circuit found the PTAB judges to be inferior officers, who were subject to insufficient oversight. The Federal Circuit remedied that insufficient oversight by severing certain statutory job protections and remanded cases which had received Final Written Decisions prior to October 31, 2019.
We will continue to report in detail on the arguments and further developments in the case.