Supreme Court Case Could Have Huge Impact on Challenging Patents

Supreme Court of the United States On November 27, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral argument in Oil States Energy Services LLC v. Greene’s Energy Group, LLC, a case examining the constitutionality of inter partes review proceedings before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“PTO”). Specifically, the case addresses the question “[w]hether inter …

A Decision Guide for Filing International Patent Applications for Multiple Inventions

Companies have two choices for meeting the PCT patent application filing requirements when they have multiple pending provisional applications. We go through the pros and cons for each approach. A company engaged in research and development will often create multiple related inventions within a year, and file a separate provisional application for each invention within …

DMCA Amendment Affecting Designated Agent Requires Registration by December 31, 2017

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”), among other things, provides a safe harbor from copyright infringement liability for online service providers and website owners that allow third parties to post content onto or through their websites or other online platforms. In order to qualify for safe harbor eligibility, a company must register an agent with …

Federal Circuit Makes it Easier to Amend Patent Claims in Post-Grant IPR Challenges

It is fairly common nowadays for a party accused of patent infringement to file a petition in the United States Patent and Trademark Office requesting Inter Partes Review (“IPR”) of the asserted patent. This is a procedure for challenging the validity of the asserted patent based on prior art consisting of patents or printed publications. …

Interpreting the On-Sale Bar Under the AIA

In Helsinn Healthcare S.A., v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc., 855 F.3d 1356 (Fed. Cir. 2017), the Federal Circuit interpreted, for the first time, what constitutes an “on-sale” bar under 35 U.S.C. 102(a)(1) of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (“AIA”). Under the AIA, a person will not be entitled to a patent if “the claimed invention …

Can You Trademark the Color Yellow for Cheerios?

“There is no blue without yellow and without orange.” — Vincent Van Gogh (June 1888). It is extremely difficult to secure trademark rights to a single color. Success stories are few and far between. Recently, General Mills, maker of Cheerios, sought trademark protection for the color yellow “as the predominant uniform background color on product …

Court Breathes Life Into Lawsuit Over Inaccurate Online Data

Last Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit revived a California man’s lawsuit accusing Spokeo, Inc. of violating the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”). The FCRA regulates any “consumer reporting agency” that furnishes a “consumer report,” and those terms are broadly defined to include operators such as Spokeo. The lawsuit arose when …

Problematic or Prophetic?

The decision by Judge Gilstrap in the Eastern District of Texas, in Raytheon Company v. Cray, Inc., has generated much discussion and misleading commentary. Judge Gilstrap denied Cray’s Motion to Dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction and improper venue, as follows: The Federal Circuit resolved competing authorities on the issue of “an established place of …