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CAFC IP Law 12/1/2013

I. APPELLATE/DISTRICT COURT JURISDICTION/REVIEW ........................... 32


A. APPELLATE/DISTRICT COURT JURISDICTION .......................................... 32
Subject matter jurisdiction - generally ...................................................................... 32
Subject matter jurisdiction general principles.................................................... 32
Court must have subject matter jurisdiction ..................................................... 32
Burden is on the party asserting jurisdiction..................................................... 35
Federal courts have limited jurisdiction ............................................................ 35
CAFCs and district courts arising under jurisdiction ................................. 37
Statutory limitations to jurisdiction .................................................................. 55
Covenant not to sue ........................................................................................... 56
Dismissal on jurisdictional grounds .................................................................. 58
Jurisdictional discovery .................................................................................... 59
Jurisdiction over PTO appeals .......................................................................... 60
Final Judgment Rule ............................................................................................. 61
Generally ........................................................................................................... 61
Collateral order doctrine ................................................................................... 65
Denial of summary judgment motion, motion to dismiss not appealable......... 66
Non-appealable order is merged into subsequent final judgment ..................... 67
Stay order generally not appealable .................................................................. 68
Pending claims, counterclaims render district court judgment non-final ......... 68
Final judgment rule is not satisfied by stipulation ............................................ 70
District court findings are not a final judgment ................................................ 74
District courts holding must form the basis of appealed judgment ................. 74
Reinstatement of appeal .................................................................................... 74
Appeal from the PTO ........................................................................................ 75
Appeal from the ITC ......................................................................................... 75
Certification FRCP 54(b)................................................................................... 75
Injunctions/Interlocutory Orders ........................................................................... 78
Injunctions......................................................................................................... 78
Interlocutory orders ........................................................................................... 82
Standing .................................................................................................................... 87
Generally ............................................................................................................... 87
Constitutional vs. prudential standing................................................................... 94
Constitutional standing ..................................................................................... 94
Prudential standing joining (co)owner ........................................................... 98
Right to sue for infringement, and seek damages 35 USC 281, 100(d) ...... 101
Party needs legal title or all substantial rights ............................................. 107
Agreements assignments, licenses 35 USC 261 ........................................ 111
Generally ......................................................................................................... 111
Exclusive licensee ........................................................................................... 117
Bare licensee ................................................................................................... 122
Non-exclusive licensee ................................................................................... 123

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Curing standing defects....................................................................................... 124
Dismissal for lack of standing............................................................................. 125
Appellate (CAFC) standing ................................................................................ 126
Declaratory judgment jurisdiction .......................................................................... 129
Generally actual controversy required ......................................................... 129
New standard Medimmune v. Genentech (S.C.) .......................................... 132
Old standard .................................................................................................... 151
Burden on DJ plaintiff ........................................................................................ 154
Standing, ripeness, and mootness requirements ................................................. 158
District courts discretion .................................................................................... 160
Existence of patent not enough ........................................................................... 163
Patentees lack of assurances or silence on enforcement.................................... 164
Patentees statements regarding enforcement ..................................................... 165
Prior, other pending litigation with the patentee ................................................. 166
Covenant not to sue ............................................................................................. 168
First-filed case rule ............................................................................................. 171
Past and future infringement ............................................................................... 173
Licensing of patents Medimmune v. Genentech (S.C.) .................................... 174
Supplemental jurisdiction ....................................................................................... 179
Generally ............................................................................................................. 180
State law claims .................................................................................................. 182
Infringement of foreign patents .......................................................................... 184
Pendent appellate jurisdiction ................................................................................. 185
Personal jurisdiction................................................................................................ 186
Generally ............................................................................................................. 186
General vs. specific jurisdiction .......................................................................... 187
General jurisdiction ......................................................................................... 188
Specific jurisdiction ........................................................................................ 188
CAFC law applies ............................................................................................... 198
Other issues ......................................................................................................... 199
Actions of exclusive licensee .......................................................................... 199
Cease and desist letters, offers of license........................................................ 200
Contracts ......................................................................................................... 201
Corporate officers ........................................................................................... 201
Employers vs. employees................................................................................ 202
Foreign defendants .......................................................................................... 202
Jurisdictional discovery .................................................................................. 204
Motion to dismiss FRCP 12(b)(2) ............................................................... 205
Suing the correct corporate entity ................................................................... 207
Third party ...................................................................................................... 207
Waiver FRCP 12(h)(1) ................................................................................ 207
Websites .......................................................................................................... 208
Venue ...................................................................................................................... 208
Service of process ................................................................................................... 208
B. APPELLATE/DISTRICT COURT REVIEW .................................................... 208

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Legislation - generally ............................................................................................ 209
Congress/patent-related legislation ......................................................................... 210
Treaties .................................................................................................................... 210
Agency/PTO decisions/regulations ......................................................................... 211
Agency/PTO decisions........................................................................................ 211
Administrative deference APA, Zurko (S.C.), Chenery doctrine ................ 211
Deference to PTO, examiners ......................................................................... 222
BPAI ............................................................................................................... 225
Agency/PTO regulations ..................................................................................... 229
Substantial deference/Chevron (S.C.) deference ............................................ 229
Attorney fee awards ................................................................................................ 237
Briefing and arguing the CAFC appeal waiver, joint appendix........................... 239
Briefing the appeal generally appeal strategy ............................................... 239
Attorney argument is not evidence ..................................................................... 239
Issues must be raised in opening brief with particularity reply brief is too late -
waiver .................................................................................................................. 240
Issue must be raised on appeal, or waiver........................................................... 242
Waiver during oral argument .............................................................................. 244
Length and number of briefs ............................................................................... 245
Concessions in briefs, at oral argument .............................................................. 245
Mischaracterizing, misquoting text, excessive hyperbole in briefs .................... 246
Striking portions of briefs ad hominem attacks ............................................... 247
Confidentiality in briefs ...................................................................................... 247
Joint appendix ..................................................................................................... 248
Choice of law CAFC vs. regional circuit law ..................................................... 248
Circumstantial evidence .......................................................................................... 253
Claim construction (CC) ......................................................................................... 253
Claim terms reviewed on appeal ......................................................................... 253
Claim terms must be in controversy ................................................................... 257
CAFC adopting new CC remand or new trial necessary? ............................... 259
District court must resolve CC disputes, which CC must be followed ............... 265
Doctrine of waiver .............................................................................................. 269
Object at trial stage to preserve CC for appeal ............................................... 276
Issue preclusion applied to CC ........................................................................... 277
Patent Office CC ................................................................................................. 279
Same CC for infringement and validity .............................................................. 279
Settlements from prior litigations ....................................................................... 280
Stare decisis adopting CC from earlier CAFC decisions ................................. 280
Untimely, premature CC issues .......................................................................... 281
Credibility determinations great deference given to fact finder .......................... 281
Cross appeals .......................................................................................................... 284
Appropriateness of cross appeals ........................................................................ 285
Conditional cross appeal ..................................................................................... 290
Final judgment needed ........................................................................................ 291

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Decisions of the district court (e.g., dismissals with prejudice, reasons for decision)
................................................................................................................................. 291
District court (BPAI, TTAB, ITC) must consider issue first .................................. 293
Generally ............................................................................................................. 295
Claim construction .............................................................................................. 300
Doctrine of waiver .............................................................................................. 303
Waiver on summary judgment ........................................................................ 315
District courts management of the trial stage ........................................................ 318
Dicta ........................................................................................................................ 320
Dismissal of appeal after settlement ....................................................................... 322
En banc review ........................................................................................................ 322
Error - by District Court and BPAI/TTAB ............................................................. 323
Generally ............................................................................................................. 323
Harmful error ...................................................................................................... 323
Harmless error rule ............................................................................................. 323
Invited error rule ................................................................................................. 326
Plain error rule .................................................................................................... 327
Ethics (and related issues) ....................................................................................... 327
Generally ............................................................................................................. 327
Attorney disqualification .................................................................................... 330
Exclusion of evidence ............................................................................................. 332
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure ............................................................................ 332
Finality of litigation, strategies ............................................................................... 333
Foreign tribunals ..................................................................................................... 333
Anti-suit injunctions............................................................................................ 333
Intervening decisions .............................................................................................. 334
Intervention in appeal ............................................................................................. 335
Judgments ............................................................................................................... 335
CAFC reviews judgments, not opinions ............................................................. 335
Summary affirmance ........................................................................................... 338
Remand necessary? - Remand for clarification .................................................. 338
Reversal of judgment .......................................................................................... 340
Subdelegation principle ...................................................................................... 341
Vacatur and remand ............................................................................................ 341
Judicial admissions ................................................................................................. 341
Judicial estoppel ...................................................................................................... 342
Judicial notice ......................................................................................................... 345
Juries, instructions and verdicts .............................................................................. 346
Juries generally; jury prejudice ........................................................................... 346
Jury instructions .................................................................................................. 348
Jury verdict.......................................................................................................... 354
Jurys award of damages ................................................................................. 354
General verdicts .............................................................................................. 355
Heavy burden to overturn jury verdict ............................................................ 357
Objecting to jury verdict ................................................................................. 357

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Reconciling inconsistent jury verdicts ............................................................ 360
Reversal of jury verdict ................................................................................... 360
Sufficiency of the evidence ............................................................................. 360
Jury taint.......................................................................................................... 361
Law of the case doctrine ......................................................................................... 362
Mandate rule, recalling the CAFCs mandate......................................................... 366
Merits panel not bound by action of single CAFC judge ....................................... 369
Mootness ................................................................................................................. 369
Mootness - generally ........................................................................................... 369
Validity addressed after noninfringement found Cardinal Chemical (S.C.) ... 372
Invalidity/IC on appeal moots infringement, other defenses .............................. 374
Valid claims infringed, no need to address other claims .................................... 378
Mootness removes the courts Article III jurisdiction ........................................ 379
Vacatur of judgment ....................................................................................... 380
MPEP/TMEP and Examiners Guidelines .............................................................. 381
Notice of appeal to the CAFC ................................................................................. 382
Expedited review ................................................................................................ 384
Preponderance of the evidence standard - infringement ......................................... 384
Prior panel decisions/CCPA/Court of Claims/Regional Circuits/BPAI/U.S. Supreme
Court/District Court ................................................................................................ 384
CAFC bound by decisions of predecessor courts ............................................... 384
Issue must be raised in prior decision to be binding precedent .......................... 386
Binding precedent not limited to its facts? ......................................................... 386
Later CAFC panel decision does not change prior panel decision unless prior
decision is overruled en banc; stare decisis ........................................................ 386
Rule 36 judgments .............................................................................................. 388
Regional circuit court decisions (prior to the CAFC) ......................................... 389
BPAI decisions.................................................................................................... 389
District court decisions ....................................................................................... 390
Supreme Court decisions .................................................................................... 390
Sanctions for violating FRAP or local rules of practice of the CAFC, frivolous
appeal ...................................................................................................................... 390
Secondary considerations - obviousness ................................................................. 392
Stay of injunction, or injunction, pending appeal ................................................... 392
Staying of appeal..................................................................................................... 393
Stipulations ............................................................................................................. 394
Transfer, reassignment to a different district court judge on remand, recusal of
judge, judicial bias .................................................................................................. 394
Unpublished decisions ............................................................................................ 395
Writs of mandamus 28 USC 1361, 1651 ........................................................ 396
C. STANDARDS OF REVIEW AND CHOICE OF LAW .................................... 406
Appeals from District Court (bench and jury trials), BPAI/TTAB, ITC (CIT), and
the Court of Federal Claims .................................................................................... 407
Bench trial ........................................................................................................... 407
Jury trial .............................................................................................................. 408

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BPAI/TTAB ........................................................................................................ 412
International Trade Commission (ITC) .............................................................. 419
Court of International Trade (CIT) ..................................................................... 422
Court of Federal Claims ...................................................................................... 423
Substantive/procedural issues (in alphabetical order)............................................. 423
Substantive/procedural patent issues .................................................................. 423
Anticipation..................................................................................................... 424
Antitrust claims, counterclaims ...................................................................... 428
Assignor estoppel ............................................................................................ 429
Best mode........................................................................................................ 429
Certificate of correction .................................................................................. 429
Claim construction .......................................................................................... 429
Damages, attorney fees, costs, interest ........................................................... 437
Design patents ................................................................................................. 448
Disclosure duty in SSOs ................................................................................ 448
Double patenting ............................................................................................. 449
Enablement ..................................................................................................... 450
Equitable defenses laches, equitable estoppel, waiver, unclean hands ........ 451
False marking .................................................................................................. 452
Incorporation by reference .............................................................................. 452
Indefiniteness .................................................................................................. 453
Inequitable conduct ......................................................................................... 454
Infringement .................................................................................................... 457
Injunctions....................................................................................................... 459
Interferences .................................................................................................... 467
Inventorship .................................................................................................... 468
Knowledge or intent under the patent law ...................................................... 469
Local rules in patent cases .............................................................................. 469
Obviousness .................................................................................................... 469
Ownership of patent ........................................................................................ 478
Patentable subject matter ................................................................................ 480
Preemption of state law by federal law ........................................................... 480
Priority to earlier filing date ............................................................................ 481
Prosecution history estoppel/all elements/vitiation and disclosure-dedication
rules/ensnarement ........................................................................................... 481
Reexamination ................................................................................................ 483
Reissue ............................................................................................................ 484
Repair vs. reconstruction ................................................................................ 485
Utility .............................................................................................................. 485
Willful infringement (and scope of waiver).................................................... 485
Written description; New matter ..................................................................... 487
Non-patent substantive issues ............................................................................. 489
Agency regulations ......................................................................................... 489
Arbitration ....................................................................................................... 489
Attorney disqualification ................................................................................ 489

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Bankruptcy ...................................................................................................... 489
Constitutionality of law and interpretation ..................................................... 490
Contract disputes, interpretation ..................................................................... 490
Eleventh Amendment (state) immunity, sovereign immunity of federal
government ..................................................................................................... 496
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure interpretation thereof .............................. 496
Laches (non-patent) ........................................................................................ 497
Mandate scope and interpretation ................................................................... 497
Piercing the corporate veil .............................................................................. 497
Statutory deception ......................................................................................... 497
Statutory interpretation ................................................................................... 497
Non-patent procedural issues .............................................................................. 499
Anti-suit injunction ......................................................................................... 499
Attorney-client privilege and waiver .............................................................. 499
Bifurcation of trial........................................................................................... 500
Claim and issue preclusions ............................................................................ 500
Credibility determinations .............................................................................. 501
Discovery issues.............................................................................................. 502
Dismissal of claims, counterclaims, defenses ................................................. 504
Dismissal of appeal ......................................................................................... 507
District courts interpretation of CAFC precedent.......................................... 507
District courts interpretation of CAFCs mandate ......................................... 507
District courts interpretation of its own orders .............................................. 507
Evidentiary rulings .......................................................................................... 507
Exhaustion of administrative remedies ........................................................... 514
Experts ............................................................................................................ 514
Joinder, severance, intervention and transfer .................................................. 514
Judical estoppel ............................................................................................... 516
Jurisdiction of district court ............................................................................ 516
Jurisdiction of CAFC over appeal................................................................... 521
Jury issues ....................................................................................................... 522
Leave to amend pleadings - complaint, answer .............................................. 528
Local court rules ............................................................................................. 529
Motion for leave .............................................................................................. 530
Motion for judgment on the pleadings ............................................................ 530
Motion for stay................................................................................................ 530
Motion to strike ............................................................................................... 530
Motion for summary judgment ....................................................................... 530
Motion for JMOL............................................................................................ 545
Motion for reconsideration ............................................................................. 554
Motion for new trial ........................................................................................ 554
Motion to amend findings ............................................................................... 558
Motion for relief from judgment ..................................................................... 558
Remand to district court .................................................................................. 559
Sanctions ......................................................................................................... 560

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Standing .......................................................................................................... 562
Statute of limitations ....................................................................................... 563
Stipulations ..................................................................................................... 563
Transfer, reassignment to a different district court judge on remand 28 USC
2106; recusal of judge ..................................................................................... 563
Waivers ........................................................................................................... 564
Writs of mandamus ......................................................................................... 564
II. BIOTECH/PHARMA CASES ............................................................................... 566
A. Biotech Cases ...................................................................................................... 566
B. Pharma/Hatch-Waxman Cases............................................................................ 570
C. Hatch-Waxman Issues ........................................................................................ 578
Generally ................................................................................................................. 580
Orange Book patent listings and patent use codes .................................................. 581
Paragraph IV certification ....................................................................................... 584
Thirty-month stay.................................................................................................... 586
180-day generic marketing exclusivity period ........................................................ 587
Stipulations by subsequent ANDA filers ................................................................ 588
Declaratory judgment jurisdiction .......................................................................... 589
Reverse payment settlements .............................................................................. 596
Injunctions............................................................................................................... 598
Preliminary injunction ........................................................................................ 598
Permanent injunction .......................................................................................... 599
Damages .................................................................................................................. 601
Willful infringement ............................................................................................... 601
Attorney fees and expert witness fees ..................................................................... 601
D. Patent Term Extension 35 USC 156 ............................................................. 604
Product in 35 USC 156(a) and (f) includes any salt form; active ingredient
defined..................................................................................................................... 604
Combination drug product ...................................................................................... 605
Extension for one patent only; first commercial marketing requirement - 35 USC
156(a)(5)(A) ............................................................................................................ 605
Interim extension 35 USC 156(e)(2) ................................................................. 606
Invalidity of patent term extension 35 USC 282, 4........................................ 606
Terminally disclaimed patents ................................................................................ 607
III. CLAIM CONSTRUCTION ................................................................................ 607
A. Phillips v. AWH Corp. (en banc) ........................................................................ 607
Claims and Claim Terms ........................................................................................ 610
Specification ........................................................................................................... 612
Prosecution History................................................................................................. 612
Extrinsic Evidence .................................................................................................. 613
Other Issues ............................................................................................................. 613
Appropriate weight must be attached to the various sources .............................. 613
Deference to District Courts claim construction ............................................... 614
Validity and claim construction .......................................................................... 614
Means-plus-function claims ................................................................................ 614

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B. Post-Phillips claim construction cases ................................................................ 615
C. Common claim terms (in alphabetic order) ........................................................ 624
D. Claim Construction Principles ............................................................................ 642
Claim construction - generally ................................................................................ 642
Claims define the invention .................................................................................... 645
Claim construction begins with the claims ............................................................. 658
Claim terms are given their ordinary and customary meaning ............................... 661
Ordinary and customary meaning is determined in view of the specification .... 669
Ordinary and customary meaning is determined at the time of the invention .... 671
Claim term as a commonly understood word ..................................................... 671
Claim term having particular meaning in the art ................................................ 673
Claim term used in the specification and/or prosecution history in a manner
inconsistent with its ordinary and customary meaning ....................................... 675
Claim construction sources ..................................................................................... 685
Appropriate weight must be attached to the sources .......................................... 688
Claim construction sources - generally ............................................................... 689
Claim language ............................................................................................... 689
Intrinsic evidence - generally .......................................................................... 690
Prosecution history.......................................................................................... 692
Dominance of the specification in claim construction ........................................ 695
Specification containing claim term definitions ............................................. 713
Prosecution history is less useful than the specification ..................................... 717
Prior art is intrinsic evidence .............................................................................. 719
Context of the claims and patent must be considered ............................................. 722
Context of the claims (both asserted and unasserted) ......................................... 725
Claim terms should not be ignored, or rendered superfluous or redundant .... 732
Context of the patent ........................................................................................... 735
Ambiguous or relative claim terms ......................................................................... 748
Antecedent basis ..................................................................................................... 750
Apparatus claims not limited by use or process of making ................................. 750
Beauregard claims ................................................................................................... 752
BPAI (PTAB)/PTO claims are given their broadest reasonable interpretation ... 752
Broadening of claims (to cover competitors product) ........................................... 760
Chemical/Pharma/Biotech claims ........................................................................... 761
Acids/salts ........................................................................................................... 762
Markush groups .................................................................................................. 762
Isomers, stereoisomers ........................................................................................ 762
Genus claims ....................................................................................................... 762
Claim construction is reviewed independently of infringement - but always takes
place in the context of the accused product ............................................................ 762
Claim term meaning is the same for all claims, related patents.............................. 765
Construction which excludes (preferred) embodiment(s), or the inventors device,
from the scope of the claims is rarely, if ever, correct ............................................ 770
Construction with a scienter requirement ............................................................... 777
Construing claims to save their validity.................................................................. 777

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Courts may not redraft claims, nonsensical construction ....................................... 779
Deference to district courts construction? ............................................................. 785
Dependent claims .................................................................................................... 787
Different terms in the claims (and the specification) are assumed to have different
meanings ................................................................................................................. 788
Disclaimer in the specification................................................................................ 790
Disclaimer must be clear ..................................................................................... 790
Disclaimer may be implicit ............................................................................. 799
Disclaimer precludes DOE infringement ............................................................ 818
Divisional applications........................................................................................ 819
Offensive use of disclaimer (to avoid prior art) .................................................. 819
Prosecution history cannot enlarge the specification .......................................... 820
Patentee pays the cost for a disclaimer ............................................................... 821
Narrow to broad claims is not a disclaimer ........................................................ 821
Disclaimer during prosecution ................................................................................ 821
General rule disclaimer based on amendments, statements distinguishing prior
art during prosecution ......................................................................................... 821
Disclaimer must be clear and unambiguous, unmistakable ................................ 830
Context of statements is important ................................................................. 840
Rescinding prosecution disclaimer ..................................................................... 842
Disclaimer during prosecution of related (vs. unrelated) applications, patents .. 843
Disclaimer must be of the claimed subject matter .............................................. 852
Disclaimer must by done by the applicant, not the examiner ............................. 853
Disclaiming more than necessary (to overcome prior art) .................................. 858
Disclaimer precludes DOE infringement ............................................................ 860
Disclaimer from mistakes made during prosecution .......................................... 861
Offensive use of prosecution disclaimer ............................................................. 861
Disclaimer during reexamination ........................................................................ 861
Means-plus-function claims ................................................................................ 862
Applicants subjective intent is irrelevant........................................................... 863
Disclaimer based on extrinsic evidence .................................................................. 863
Disclaimer - surrender of claims ............................................................................. 863
Doctrine of claim differentiation ............................................................................ 863
Generally presumption that each claim has different scope ............................ 863
Presumption is not a hard and fast rule ........................................................... 866
Independent claim construed based on dependent claims .................................. 871
Independent claim construed based on another independent claim .................... 876
Redundant, superfluous claims are disfavored ................................................... 877
Continuation application adding/omitting claim limitation from parent application
............................................................................................................................. 879
Extrinsic evidence ................................................................................................... 880
Generally ............................................................................................................. 880
Dictionaries ......................................................................................................... 884
Expert testimony ................................................................................................. 898
Admissions by accused infringer ........................................................................ 907

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Inventor testimony .............................................................................................. 908
Other court decisions .......................................................................................... 909
Reexamination examiner .................................................................................... 911
Industry standards, publications.......................................................................... 911
Regulations ......................................................................................................... 912
Foreign prosecution ................................................................................................ 913
Functional language ................................................................................................ 914
Incorporation by reference ...................................................................................... 914
Inoperable embodiments in claims ......................................................................... 916
Jepson claims .......................................................................................................... 917
Lexicographer rule .................................................................................................. 917
Generally giving claim term a special definition ......................................... 917
Lexicography must be clear ................................................................................ 921
Lexicography need not be explicit ...................................................................... 924
Markush claims ....................................................................................................... 926
Method claims steps not limited in order, unless implicit ................................... 927
Methods for measuring claim terms ....................................................................... 928
Means-plus-function claims 35 USC 112, 6 .................................................. 929
Generally claimed function and corresponding structure in the specification . 931
Claimed function ............................................................................................. 932
Corresponding structure .................................................................................. 934
Doctrine of claim differentiation does not override Section 112, 6 ............. 947
Equivalents ...................................................................................................... 948
Means recited in the claim? ............................................................................. 949
Step for function claim .................................................................................... 959
Infringement ........................................................................................................ 959
Invalidity ............................................................................................................. 959
Indefiniteness ...................................................................................................... 960
Preamble limiting or not?..................................................................................... 960
Generally ............................................................................................................. 962
Preamble reciting essential structure or steps, vs. stating merely the purpose or
intended use of the invention .............................................................................. 964
Preamble limiting when provides antecedent basis for claim terms ................... 967
Reliance on the preamble during prosecution is limiting ................................... 967
Preamble limiting ................................................................................................ 968
Preamble of Jepson claim is limiting .................................................................. 968
Product-based claim limited to process by which the product is made? ................ 969
Product-by-process claims .................................................................................. 972
Ranges ..................................................................................................................... 973
Reading limitations, embodiments (improperly) from the specification into the
claims vs. interpreting the claims based on the specification ................................. 973
Generally ............................................................................................................. 976
Fine line between the two axioms ....................................................................... 979
Clear disclosure is necessary for importing limitation ....................................... 981
Purposes/advantages/objectives/functions of the invention limiting? ................ 995

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Unclaimed features are not limiting .................................................................... 999
Preferred embodiments cannot be read into the claims .................................... 1002
Ranges, numeric limits.................................................................................. 1007
Claim terms usage and context ........................................................................ 1008
Drawings are not limiting ................................................................................. 1010
Single embodiment in the specification does not necessarily limit the claims . 1012
Textual reference in the claim is necessary ...................................................... 1018
Specification need not describe future embodiments ....................................... 1019
IV. INFRINGEMENT............................................................................................. 1019
A. 35 USC 271(a) direct infringement............................................................. 1019
General rules of direct infringement ..................................................................... 1019
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1019
Infringement determined in two steps............................................................... 1021
Claim construction vs. infringement ............................................................. 1022
Infringement requires that each and every claim element or step be performed
........................................................................................................................... 1025
Burden of proof ................................................................................................. 1029
Patentees commercial embodiment not used for determining infringement ... 1030
Separate patentability of the accused product does not preclude infringement 1031
Make .................................................................................................................. 1031
Use ..................................................................................................................... 1032
Offer to sell ........................................................................................................ 1033
Sale .................................................................................................................... 1035
Territorial reach of 35 USC 271(a) Within the United States ..................... 1035
Use without authority . . . during the patent term .............................................. 1041
B. 35 USC 271(b) active inducement of infringement .................................... 1042
Generally ............................................................................................................... 1046
Direct infringement required................................................................................. 1048
Intent required factual determination ................................................................. 1059
Inducement must be proven for all claim elements .............................................. 1073
Inducement occurring from foreign country ......................................................... 1073
Indemnity agreements ........................................................................................... 1074
C. 35 USC 271(c) contributory infringement .................................................. 1074
Generally ............................................................................................................... 1074
Direct infringement required................................................................................. 1075
Knowledge of infringement .................................................................................. 1076
Intent (knowing) ................................................................................................ 1076
Offer for sale or sale of a component . . . . ........................................................ 1077
Substantial non-infringing uses............................................................................. 1078
Material part of the invention ............................................................................ 1080
Within the United States.................................................................................... 1080
D. 35 USC 271(e)(1) FDA exemption, safe harbor...................................... 1080
Generally Merck v. Integra (S.C.) ...................................................................... 1080
Alternative uses/purposes of research are also exempt......................................... 1085
Basic scientific research is not exempt ................................................................. 1085

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Research tools ....................................................................................................... 1086
E. 35 USC 271(f) ................................................................................................ 1087
Active inducement ................................................................................................ 1087
Method/process inventions ................................................................................... 1087
Physical supply of components is required ....................................................... 1089
Software as a component Microsoft v. AT&T (S.C.), Eolas ........................... 1089
F. 35 USC 271(g), 295 ..................................................................................... 1091
G. 35 USC 272 .................................................................................................... 1093
H. Other Infringement Issues ................................................................................. 1093
Admissions by counsel ......................................................................................... 1093
Admissions in the specification and publications ................................................. 1093
Affirmative defenses to infringement 35 USC 282......................................... 1093
Apparatus, system vs. method claims ................................................................... 1094
Bankruptcy ............................................................................................................ 1097
Biotech/Pharma ..................................................................................................... 1098
Capable of, sometimes infringement .................................................................... 1099
De minimis infringement....................................................................................... 1104
Dependent claims .................................................................................................. 1105
Direct infringement is a strict liability offense ..................................................... 1105
Experimential use exception to infringement ....................................................... 1106
First sale (patent exhaustion) defense ................................................................... 1107
Quanta Computer v. LG Electronics (S.C.) ...................................................... 1107
First sale/patent exhaustion doctrine - generally .............................................. 1110
Licenses (and Covenants not to sue) ................................................................. 1120
Method claims ................................................................................................... 1120
Sale of components of the patented invention .................................................. 1123
Implied license from authorized sale ................................................................ 1124
First sale (patent exhaustion) and permissible repair vs. reconstruction .............. 1125
Permissible repair.............................................................................................. 1127
Future technology ................................................................................................. 1128
Implied license defense Met-Coil ...................................................................... 1128
Indirect infringement - generally .......................................................................... 1132
Invalid patent is not infringed ............................................................................... 1132
Joint infringement ................................................................................................. 1133
Joint tortfeasors ..................................................................................................... 1143
License defense to infringement ........................................................................... 1143
Means-plus-function claims - 35 USC 112, 6 ................................................. 1144
Personal liability for infringement ........................................................................ 1153
Piercing the corporate veil alter ego theory of infringement ............................. 1153
Practicing the prior art not a viable defense to infringement ............................. 1154
Product-by-process claims .................................................................................... 1155
Proof of infringement ............................................................................................ 1157
Burden of proof on the patentee........................................................................ 1157
Contributory infringement ................................................................................ 1159
Direct vs. indirect evidence of infringement..................................................... 1160

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Doctrine of equivalents ..................................................................................... 1162
Infringement evidence expert testimony, testing, etc. ................................... 1166
Practicing industry standards ............................................................................ 1172
Process claims 35 USC 295 ........................................................................ 1172
Right to exclude .................................................................................................... 1173
Vacarious liability ................................................................................................. 1173
V. DOCTRINE OF EQUIVALENTS and PROSECUTION HISTORY ESTOPPEL
Festo (S.C.) ............................................................................................................ 1174
A. Doctrine of equivalents ................................................................................. 1177
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1177
DOE issues ........................................................................................................ 1185
After-arising technology ............................................................................... 1185
All limitations, elements rule .................................................................... 1186
Theory, evidence of equivalence .................................................................. 1188
Vitiation ........................................................................................................ 1190
Ensnarement of prior art ............................................................................... 1195
Foreseeability, narrow claiming.................................................................... 1197
Disclosure-dedication rule ......................................................................... 1199
Specific exclusion principle ...................................................................... 1201
Totality of circumstances considered............................................................ 1202
Function, way, result test .............................................................................. 1203
Insubstantial differences ............................................................................... 1204
One-to-one correspondence not required; equivalency when limitations,
components combined .................................................................................. 1205
B. Reverse doctrine of equivalents .................................................................... 1206
C. Prosecution history estoppel ......................................................................... 1207
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1208
Argument-based estoppel.................................................................................. 1210
Amendment-based estoppel Festo (S.C.) ....................................................... 1214
Narrowing amendments made for the purpose of patentability create a
rebuttable presumption of surrender ............................................................. 1214
Rebutting the presumption - generally.......................................................... 1220
Foreseeability ................................................................................................ 1222
Tangentialness............................................................................................... 1226
Some other reason for the amendment ...................................................... 1230
VI. WILLFUL INFRINGEMENT .......................................................................... 1231
A. In re Seagate Technology (en banc) ................................................................. 1232
B. Generally Objective recklessness standard .................................................... 1234
C. No affirmative duty of due care ........................................................................ 1241
D. Burden of proof ................................................................................................. 1242
E. Read v. Portec factors (9) for assessing enhanced damages for willful
infringement .............................................................................................................. 1244
F. Knorr-Bremse (en banc) ................................................................................... 1245
G. Advice of counsel defense to willful infringement ........................................... 1247
Advice of counsel defense - generally .................................................................. 1247

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Competent opinion of counsel .............................................................................. 1249
When opinion of counsel obtained ....................................................................... 1250
Scope of waiver of attorney-client privilege and attorney work-product immunity
Seagate, Echostar ................................................................................................. 1251
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1252
Scope of waiver of attorney-client privilege ..................................................... 1252
Scope of waiver of attorney work-product immunity ....................................... 1253
Opinion counsel vs. litigation (trial) counsel - Seagate .................................... 1254
VII. REMEDIES....................................................................................................... 1256
A. DAMAGES 35 USC 284 ............................................................................ 1256
Damages - generally ............................................................................................. 1258
Damages in patent infringement cases - 35 USC 284, 286 .......................... 1258
Broad damages language of 35 USC 284 ...................................................... 1261
Apportionment of damages ............................................................................... 1262
Damages award for past infringement .............................................................. 1263
Double damages are not recoverable ................................................................ 1264
Liability of joint-tortfeasors .............................................................................. 1265
Successor liability ............................................................................................. 1266
Burden of proving damages, expert testimony ................................................. 1266
Marking/Notice of infringement for recovering damages 35 USC 287(a) . 1269
False marking 35 USC 292 ..................................................................... 1274
Damages for pre-verdict vs. post-verdict sales ................................................. 1280
Remittitur of damages, excessive damages award ............................................ 1281
State law claims ................................................................................................ 1282
Unlawful repair prolonging infringing use .................................................... 1282
Types of Damages................................................................................................. 1282
Lost Profits 35 USC 284 ............................................................................. 1282
Generally ....................................................................................................... 1283
Panduit test but for standard .................................................................. 1284
Patentees entitlement to lost profits ............................................................. 1292
Foreseeability ................................................................................................ 1293
Entire market value rule/convoyed sales ................................................... 1294
Price erosion lost profits ............................................................................... 1296
Other lost profits-related issues .................................................................... 1296
Reasonable Royalty 35 USC 284 ................................................................ 1298
Generally ....................................................................................................... 1301
Georgia-Pacific factors to determine reasonable royalty ............................. 1302
Determining the royalty base ........................................................................ 1313
Determining the royalty rate Georgia-Pacific factors ............................... 1315
Other reasonable royalty-related issues ........................................................ 1322
Enhanced damages 35 USC 284 ................................................................. 1324
Pre-judgment interest ........................................................................................ 1327
Post-judgment interest ...................................................................................... 1329
Costs FRCP 54(d)(1), 28 USC 1919, 1920 ............................................... 1329
Punitive damages .............................................................................................. 1334

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Equitable remedies ............................................................................................ 1334
B. INJUNCTIONS 35 USC 283, FRCP 65 ..................................................... 1334
Preliminary Injunctions ......................................................................................... 1334
District courts discretion .................................................................................. 1338
Extraordinary relief - four-factor test for PI ..................................................... 1339
Likelihood of success on the merits .............................................................. 1341
Irreparable harm ............................................................................................ 1348
Balance of hardships ..................................................................................... 1354
Public interest................................................................................................ 1355
Other PI-related issues ...................................................................................... 1356
PI opinion has no conclusive bearing on later trial or appeal ....................... 1356
Contempt proceedings .................................................................................. 1357
Grant/denial of PI vs. stay of litigation pending reexamination ................... 1357
Stay of injunction, pending appeal................................................................ 1357
Scope of PI overbroad ................................................................................... 1358
PI against communicating ones patent rights .............................................. 1358
Willful infringement based on post-filing conduct - Seagate .................... 1359
Bond amount ................................................................................................. 1359
Permanent Injunctions .......................................................................................... 1360
eBay v. MercExchange (S.C.) ........................................................................... 1363
Generally an injunction is a drastic and extraordinary remedy ..................... 1366
District courts broad discretion ongoing royalty in lieu of injunction ......... 1366
Four-factor test of eBay (S.C.) .......................................................................... 1371
Irreparable injury .......................................................................................... 1372
Monetary damages inadequate to compensate injury ................................... 1380
Balance of hardships ..................................................................................... 1383
Public interest................................................................................................ 1385
Contempt proceedings ...................................................................................... 1387
Form and scope of injunction FRCP 65(d) .................................................... 1394
Need not practice the patent for an injunction eBay (S.C.) ............................ 1397
C. ATTORNEY FEES 35 USC 285 ................................................................ 1398
Attorney Fees 35 USC 285 ............................................................................. 1398
35 USC 285 attorney fees awarded in exceptional cases ............................ 1402
District courts discretion factors considered inherent power expert
witness fees ....................................................................................................... 1403
Two-step inquiry for determining attorney fees award..................................... 1406
Generally ....................................................................................................... 1406
Prevailing party ......................................................................................... 1407
Exceptional case............................................................................................ 1409
Other attorney fees-related issues ..................................................................... 1439
VIII. PRIORITY DATES 35 USC 119, 120 ...................................................... 1440
A. Generally claiming priority to an earlier application ..................................... 1441
B. Benefit of foreign application ........................................................................... 1442
C. Benefit of provisional application ..................................................................... 1443
D. Section 112, 1, requirements must be satisfied for the benefit of priority ..... 1444

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
E. Incorporation by reference ................................................................................ 1451
F. Priority date estoppel ........................................................................................ 1454
G. National stage application = PCT application and filing date .......................... 1454
H. Priority determination by the PTO .................................................................... 1454
I. Alternative priority dates asserted .................................................................... 1455
IX. DEFENSES TO INFRINGEMENT ................................................................. 1455
A. INVALIDITY GENERALLY ....................................................................... 1455
Presumption of validity 35 USC 282 .............................................................. 1455
Defenses to infringement 35 USC 282............................................................ 1465
Burden of proof never shifts ................................................................................. 1467
Priority date of patent............................................................................................ 1468
Prior art date of a patent reference ........................................................................ 1468
Antedating a prior art reference ............................................................................ 1468
Construe the claims first -- and compare the prior art to the claims as written .... 1470
Claims are construed the same way for infringement and invalidity.................... 1477
Scope and interpretation of prior art reference ..................................................... 1478
Invalidity based on procedural or technical requirements of 35 USC .................. 1480
Means-plus-function claims .................................................................................. 1480
Prior art before/not before the examiner ............................................................... 1481
Admissions in the specification or PH of prior art, or state of the prior art.......... 1487
Witness testimony corroboration required ......................................................... 1488
B. PATENTABLE SUBJECT MATTER 35 USC 101 ................................... 1491
Bilski v. Kappos (S.C.) .......................................................................................... 1508
In re Bilski (en banc)............................................................................................. 1509
Generally ............................................................................................................... 1513
Patentable subject matter 35 USC 101 ........................................................ 1513
Threshold question, claim construction ............................................................ 1514
Patentable subject matter, although broad, has limits ....................................... 1520
Four categories of patentable subject matter in 101 ...................................... 1521
Fundamental principles are not patentable subject matter - preemption .......... 1523
Abstract ideas and other fundamental principles are not patent-eligible ...... 1523
Machine-or-transformation test is not the sole test ....................................... 1536
Mental processes are not patent-eligible ....................................................... 1546
Biotech/Pharma ..................................................................................................... 1547
Business method and software patents ................................................................. 1549
Printed matter ........................................................................................................ 1553
C. ANTICIPATION .............................................................................................. 1554
Generally 35 USC 102(a), 102 (b), and 102(e) ............................................ 1554
Anticipation - standard .......................................................................................... 1554
Generally all claim elements must be disclosed, expressly or inherently, in a
single enabling prior art reference .................................................................... 1554
Disclosure of claim elements arranged as in the claim is required ............... 1564
Lists and limited genuses in prior art reference anticipate ........................... 1566
Additional functions, purposes in prior art reference are not relevant to
anticipation .................................................................................................... 1567

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Anticipation vs. obviousness ............................................................................ 1568
Interpreting the prior art reference .................................................................... 1568
Accidental/unappreciated prior art ........................................................................ 1568
Biotech/Pharma ..................................................................................................... 1569
Biotech .............................................................................................................. 1569
Pharma .............................................................................................................. 1569
Anticipation by possession ........................................................................... 1569
Genus-species ............................................................................................... 1570
Enantiomers .................................................................................................. 1572
Claim covering several compositions (e.g., ranges) anticipated if the prior art
contains one Titanium Metals ............................................................................ 1572
Derivation 35 USC 102(f) ............................................................................... 1573
Drawings in the prior art ....................................................................................... 1574
Enablement of prior art ......................................................................................... 1574
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1575
Anticipation by prior art vs. enablement of the claimed invention................... 1579
Invention of the prior art need not have been made.......................................... 1580
Presumption of enablement for prior art patent or non-patent publication ....... 1581
Secondary references to show enablement ....................................................... 1582
Incorporation by reference in prior art reference .................................................. 1583
Inherency............................................................................................................... 1585
Inherency in the prior art - generally ................................................................ 1585
Knowledge of inherency not required at time of the prior art .......................... 1587
Necessary result for inherency .......................................................................... 1589
Patentability of a known composition, process................................................. 1591
Unappreciated properties are inherent .............................................................. 1593
Prior knowledge or use by others - 102(a)......................................................... 1593
Printed publication 35 USC 102(a) and 102(b) ........................................ 1593
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1593
Public accessibility is the key ........................................................................ 1594
Authenticity....................................................................................................... 1599
Witness testimony to prove prior publication ................................................... 1599
Public use bar 35 USC 102(b) ..................................................................... 1600
Generally - two-part test ................................................................................... 1600
Experimental use negates public use bar ....................................................... 1606
Other public use bar-related issues ................................................................ 1609
On sale bar 35 USC 102(b).......................................................................... 1609
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1609
Two-part test ..................................................................................................... 1611
Patented invention ..................................................................................... 1612
Commercial sale or offer for sale .............................................................. 1613
Ready for patenting ................................................................................... 1617
Experimentation negates invalidity................................................................... 1619
Method claims on sale? ................................................................................. 1622
Prior invention 35 USC 102(g) ....................................................................... 1624

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Generally priority of invention ...................................................................... 1624
Burden of proof, production ............................................................................. 1627
Conception and reduction to practice ............................................................... 1628
Abandonment, suppression, concealment ......................................................... 1630
Printed matter ........................................................................................................ 1632
Product-by-process claims .................................................................................... 1633
Validity - generally ........................................................................................... 1633
Purpose of product-by-process claims .............................................................. 1635
Ranges ................................................................................................................... 1636
Teaching away is inapplicable to anticipation .................................................. 1637
That which infringes if later, anticipates if earlier ................................................ 1638
D. OBVIOUSNESS ............................................................................................... 1640
Generally - Obviousness 35 USC 103(a) ........................................................ 1652
General rule of obviousness legal conclusion, based on Graham v. John Deere
(S.C.) factual factors (4) ........................................................................................ 1656
Scope and content of the prior art ..................................................................... 1663
Level of ordinary skill in the art ....................................................................... 1665
Combining prior art/teaching, suggestion, or motivation to combine, modify prior art
............................................................................................................................... 1668
KSR v. Teleflex (S.C.) ........................................................................................ 1668
Two requirements for combining prior art........................................................ 1671
Motivation to combine, modify may be implicit in the prior art ...................... 1673
Generally flexible, expansive nature of obviousness, but reason needed .. 1673
KSR rules of obviousness applied ................................................................. 1687
Expert testimony needed? ............................................................................. 1700
Motivation implicit from the content of the prior art, nature of the problem
addressed, or common knowledge ................................................................ 1701
Avoidance of hindsight - motivation to combine prevents hindsight bias........ 1713
Reasonable expectation of success ................................................................... 1720
Obvious to try when a finite number of identified, predictable solutions in
the prior art .................................................................................................... 1726
Prior art ................................................................................................................. 1736
Analogous art ........................................................................................................ 1737
Teaching away ...................................................................................................... 1742
Patentability not negatived by the manner in which the invention was made .. 1751
Prima facie case of obviousness and rebuttal thereof ........................................... 1753
Unexpected results ............................................................................................ 1756
Ranges ........................................................................................................... 1761
Secondary considerations...................................................................................... 1766
Secondary considerations are always considered ............................................. 1771
Nexus required - generally ................................................................................ 1777
Commercial success .......................................................................................... 1782
Copying ............................................................................................................. 1790
Failure of others ................................................................................................ 1793
Praise by others ................................................................................................. 1794

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Licensing ........................................................................................................... 1796
Long-felt, but unmet, need ................................................................................ 1797
Skepticism ......................................................................................................... 1798
Unexpected results ............................................................................................ 1800
Other obviousness issues ...................................................................................... 1802
Anticipation is the epitome of obviousness ................................................... 1802
Apparatus teaches obvious methods of using ................................................... 1803
Biotech .............................................................................................................. 1803
Pharma .............................................................................................................. 1804
Obviousness generally .................................................................................. 1804
Purified isomers, stereoisomers from prior art mixtures .............................. 1805
Genus-species ............................................................................................... 1805
Prima facie obviousness of structurally similar compounds, and rebuttal thereof
....................................................................................................................... 1806
Patentability of a prior art composition based on the discovery of a new use or
property ......................................................................................................... 1818
Patentability of combination formulation ..................................................... 1818
FDA submissions .......................................................................................... 1819
In vitro data predictive of in vivo conditions? .............................................. 1820
BPAI ................................................................................................................. 1820
Claim-by-claim basis, dependent claims, broader/narrower claims ................. 1820
103/ 102(g) prior art ..................................................................................... 1821
Enablement of prior art ..................................................................................... 1821
Expert testimony (e.g., expert report) to prove (non)obviousness .................... 1823
Inconsistency between views of different examiners ....................................... 1827
Inherency vs. obviousness ................................................................................ 1827
Inventors concessions of obviousness ............................................................. 1829
Printed matter .................................................................................................... 1829
Product vs. process of making product ............................................................. 1830
Process of making product of process public > 1 year before filing date ...... 1830
Ranges ............................................................................................................... 1831
Simultaneous, independent invention as (secondary) evidence of obviousness 1831
Terminal disclaimer .......................................................................................... 1832
E. INDEFINITENESS........................................................................................... 1832
Definiteness requirement 35 USC 112, second paragraph ............................ 1835
Generally ............................................................................................................... 1836
Claim not amenable to construction or insolubly ambiguous is indefinite ....... 1838
Prior art effect when determining definiteness ................................................. 1846
Claim not indefinite because difficult to construe ............................................ 1848
General principles of claim construction apply ............................................ 1850
Claims with scienter requirement ......................................................................... 1852
Close calls of indefiniteness during litigation favor the patentee ......................... 1852
Lack of antecedent basis ....................................................................................... 1852
Means-plus-function claims - 112, 6 .............................................................. 1853
Methods, tests and standards for measuring a claim feature, words of degree ..... 1867

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Notice function of claims, functional language, claims covering both apparatus and
method................................................................................................................... 1870
Purpose of the invention considered ..................................................................... 1875
Words cannot be eliminated from a claim to satisfy the definiteness requirement
............................................................................................................................... 1876
Words of approximation and degree, relative terms ............................................. 1876
F. ENABLEMENT ............................................................................................... 1877
Enablement requirement 35 USC 112, first paragraph .................................. 1878
Generally ............................................................................................................... 1879
Biotech/Pharma ..................................................................................................... 1883
Biotech .............................................................................................................. 1883
Biotech/Pharma ................................................................................................. 1884
Pharma .............................................................................................................. 1886
Background section of patent can provide enablement ........................................ 1886
Claiming priority to an earlier application ............................................................ 1886
Commercial embodiment not required ................................................................. 1887
Construe claims first ............................................................................................. 1888
Enablement of claims vs. anticipatory prior art .................................................... 1888
Enablement and written description are separate requirements ............................ 1889
Evidence before the filing date to demonstrate enablement ................................. 1889
Improvement patents ............................................................................................. 1889
Incorporation by reference .................................................................................... 1889
Later-arising technology ....................................................................................... 1890
Nascent technology ........................................................................................... 1890
Undue breadth full scope of the claim not enabled............................................ 1890
Undue experimentation ......................................................................................... 1893
Generally In re Wands factors ....................................................................... 1895
Inventors failed attempts to practice the invention .......................................... 1897
Testimonial evidence regarding undue experimentation .................................. 1898
Expert testimony ........................................................................................... 1899
Utility requirement 35 USC 101 ..................................................................... 1899
G. WRITTEN DESCRIPTION.............................................................................. 1900
Written description requirement 35 USC 112, first paragraph ...................... 1905
Generally ............................................................................................................... 1905
Purpose of the written description requirement ................................................ 1905
Express support not required ............................................................................ 1906
Possession of the invention ............................................................................... 1907
Actual reduction to practice not required for written description ..................... 1913
No particular form of disclosure is required ..................................................... 1914
Original claims are part of the specification ..................................................... 1915
Obvious variants of disclosure is not written description ................................. 1915
Fact-based inquiry assess written description on a case-by-case basis.......... 1916
Negative claim limitation.................................................................................. 1918
Biotech/Pharma ..................................................................................................... 1918
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1918

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Functional description alone does not satisfy the written description requirement
........................................................................................................................... 1921
Functional description requires a structure-function relationship ................ 1922
Biotech vs. chemical (pharma) inventions ........................................................ 1924
DNA and proteins ............................................................................................. 1924
Deposit of biological material ........................................................................... 1927
Chemical and biological genus (and species) claims ........................................ 1927
PTO Written Description Guidelines ................................................................ 1933
Gentry Gallery, Tronzo, Lizardtech specification too narrow for claim breadth
............................................................................................................................... 1934
Later claimed subject matter In re Ruschig, genus-species; New matter prohibition
under 35 USC 132 .............................................................................................. 1936
New matter prohibition ..................................................................................... 1938
Original claims provide written description support ........................................ 1941
Genus-species ................................................................................................... 1941
Teaching function of the written description quid pro quo ............................... 1942
Nature and scope of the invention determines adequate written description........ 1943
Written description and enablement are separate requirements - Vas-Cath ......... 1944
Drawings ............................................................................................................... 1946
Incorporation by reference .................................................................................... 1946
Expert and inventor testimony .............................................................................. 1947
H. BEST MODE .................................................................................................... 1949
Best mode requirement 35 USC 112, first paragraph .................................... 1949
Generally ............................................................................................................... 1949
Best mode violation measured by the claims ........................................................ 1953
Information that is routine, readily known to a POS in the art is not a best mode
violation ................................................................................................................ 1955
Biotech .................................................................................................................. 1956
I. UTILITY 35 USC 101 ................................................................................ 1956
Utility requirement 35 USC 101 ..................................................................... 1956
Generally ............................................................................................................... 1956
Biotech/Pharma ..................................................................................................... 1957
Biotech .............................................................................................................. 1957
Pharma .............................................................................................................. 1957
Commercial success may support utility of the invention .................................... 1958
J. INOPERABILITY ............................................................................................ 1958
K. INVENTORSHIP ............................................................................................. 1958
Conception ............................................................................................................ 1958
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1959
Biotech .............................................................................................................. 1964
Pharma .............................................................................................................. 1964
Corroboration required.......................................................................................... 1966
Joint inventorship, non-joinder ............................................................................. 1970
Correction of, invalidity of patent for, incorrect inventorship - misjoinder/nonjoinder
35 USC 256 ..................................................................................................... 1977

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
L. DOUBLE PATENTING ................................................................................... 1980
Generally ............................................................................................................... 1980
Same invention-type double patenting .............................................................. 1981
Obviousness-type double patenting ...................................................................... 1981
Generally ........................................................................................................... 1981
Pharma/Chemical .............................................................................................. 1989
Same invention vs. obviousness-type double patenting ................................ 1991
Obviousness vs. obviousness-type double patenting ........................................ 1991
Terminal disclaimers ......................................................................................... 1993
Restriction requirements - 121 shield, safe harbor ............................................ 1995
M. INEQUITABLE CONDUCT........................................................................ 1998
Generally ............................................................................................................... 2003
Pleading requirement FRCP 9(b)....................................................................... 2011
Materiality ............................................................................................................. 2014
Err on side of disclosure ................................................................................... 2014
Materiality standard .......................................................................................... 2015
Exception for affirmative egregious misconduct .............................................. 2024
Categories (3) of materiality, plus examples .................................................... 2026
Misrepresentations, omissions of material fact; and false information,
statements ...................................................................................................... 2026
Failure to disclose material information vs. cumulative information is not
material ......................................................................................................... 2030
Affidavits/declarations ...................................................................................... 2044
District court must decide the level of materiality ............................................ 2048
Prior art search is unnecessary .......................................................................... 2049
Foreign counterparts prior art references, statements .................................... 2049
Intent to deceive .................................................................................................... 2050
Materiality does not presume intent, which must be proven by showing a specific
intent to deceive .............................................................................................. 2050
Intent standard/inference of intent .................................................................... 2055
Inference of intent ......................................................................................... 2059
Gross negligence is not sufficient for inequitable conduct ........................... 2075
Affidavits/declarations ...................................................................................... 2077
Weighing, balancing of materiality and intent ...................................................... 2079
Other inequitable conduct-related issues .............................................................. 2082
Advisory jury on inequitable conduct ............................................................... 2082
Conduct after patent issuance ........................................................................... 2082
Credibility determinations ................................................................................ 2082
Effect of reissue or reexamination on inequitable conduct ............................... 2084
Improper payment of small entity fees ............................................................. 2085
Inequitable conduct applied to other claims, applications ................................ 2086
Inequitable conduct and invalidity are distinct issues....................................... 2087
Inequitable conduct vs. fraud ............................................................................ 2088
Misclaimed priority dates ................................................................................. 2088
Petitions to make special ................................................................................... 2089

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Terminal disclaimers ......................................................................................... 2089
Unclean hands ................................................................................................... 2090
Withdrawal of patent(s) does not avoid inequitable conduct ............................ 2090
N. ANTITRUST/PATENT MISUSE .................................................................... 2090
Antitrust ................................................................................................................ 2090
Antitrust law generally, settlements .................................................................. 2090
Antitrust claim, counterclaim............................................................................ 2093
Noerr-Pennington immunity, and sham litigation exception ........................ 2094
Market power not presumed by patent ownership ............................................ 2096
Tying arrangements .......................................................................................... 2096
Unreasonable restraint of trade ......................................................................... 2097
Monopolization or attempted monopolization .................................................. 2098
Walker Process claim ....................................................................................... 2100
Patent misuse ........................................................................................................ 2103
Patent misuse - generally .................................................................................. 2103
35 USC 271(d) safe harbor ......................................................................... 2106
Tying arrangements .......................................................................................... 2106
Agreements not to compete .............................................................................. 2109
O. BAD FAITH LITIGATION ............................................................................. 2111
Sanctions FRCP 11 ............................................................................................ 2112
Rule 11 sanctions - generally ............................................................................ 2114
Pre-filing investigation required ....................................................................... 2115
Sanctions - generally ............................................................................................. 2118
P. LITIGATION MISCONDUCT ........................................................................ 2119
Courts possess inherent power to sanction litigation misconduct ..................... 2120
Q. LACHES, EQUITABLE ESTOPPEL, AND WAIVER................................... 2122
Equitable estoppel ................................................................................................. 2122
Laches ................................................................................................................... 2125
Prosecution Laches ............................................................................................... 2130
Waiver relinquishment of a known right ........................................................... 2131
R. CLAIM AND ISSUE PRECLUSIONS ............................................................ 2132
Generally ............................................................................................................... 2132
Claim preclusion (res judicata) ............................................................................. 2133
Defense of claim preclusion - generally ........................................................... 2136
Default judgment .............................................................................................. 2145
Defendant preclusion ........................................................................................ 2146
Dismissal with prejudice ................................................................................... 2146
Exceptions to claim preclusion ......................................................................... 2147
Offensive use of claim preclusion..................................................................... 2148
Suing joint tortfeasors ....................................................................................... 2149
Successive claims of patent infringement ......................................................... 2149
Patent and trademark invalidity claim in a later action..................................... 2152
Issue preclusion (collateral estoppel) .................................................................... 2152
Defensive collateral estoppel Blonder-Tongue (S.C.).................................... 2155
Elements for issue preclusion, and estoppel issues, types ................................ 2157

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
S. ASSIGNOR ESTOPPEL .................................................................................. 2162
T. OTHER DEFENSES ........................................................................................ 2163
Bona fide purchaser defense 35 USC 261....................................................... 2163
Unclean hands doctrine ......................................................................................... 2164
Other infringement defenses ................................................................................. 2164
X. SETTLEMENTS................................................................................................... 2165
A. Settlement agreements/Consent judgments ...................................................... 2165
Generally ............................................................................................................... 2166
Consent judgment ................................................................................................. 2168
Contempt order ..................................................................................................... 2169
Covenant not to sue ............................................................................................... 2170
Covenant not to challenge patent validity............................................................. 2170
Interpretation of settlement agreements ................................................................ 2171
Settlement correspondence exempt from discovery ............................................. 2174
Preclusion .............................................................................................................. 2174
Other issues ........................................................................................................... 2175
B. Arbitration and mediation ................................................................................. 2176
XI. DISTRICT COURT PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE ................................... 2178
A. Patent-related issues .......................................................................................... 2178
Claim interpretation .............................................................................................. 2178
How? ................................................................................................................. 2178
When? ............................................................................................................... 2179
Who? ................................................................................................................. 2180
Infringement .......................................................................................................... 2181
Claim selection.................................................................................................. 2181
Timeliness of asserting infringement theory..................................................... 2182
Fact findings regarding the accused product .................................................... 2182
Invalidity, unenforceability moots infringement .............................................. 2182
Infringement evidence ...................................................................................... 2182
Invalidity ............................................................................................................... 2182
Prior art statement - 35 USC 282 ....................................................................... 2183
B. District court practice and procedure ................................................................ 2183
Local court rules ................................................................................................... 2183
Local court rules - generally ............................................................................. 2183
Local patent rules .............................................................................................. 2184
Generally ....................................................................................................... 2184
Northern District of California (revised in 2008) ......................................... 2184
Pleading FRCP 3-15, 18 .................................................................................... 2185
General rules of pleading FRCP 7-9 .............................................................. 2185
Complaint FRCP 3, 4..................................................................................... 2194
Service of process FRCP 4-6 ......................................................................... 2194
Counterclaims FRCP 13 ................................................................................ 2195
Amendment of pleadings FRCP 15, 16 ......................................................... 2197
Statute of limitations ......................................................................................... 2202
Motions FRCP 7, 12 .......................................................................................... 2202

25
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Motion for reconsideration ............................................................................... 2203
Dismissal FRCP 12(b) and (c), 41 ..................................................................... 2203
Transfer of venue - 28 USC 1404(a) and 1631................................................ 2211
Joinder of parties FRCP 19-22, Section 299 ...................................................... 2220
Consolidation and segregation of claims and parties FRCP 21, 42 ................... 2223
Intervention FRCP 24 ........................................................................................ 2223
Magistrate judge FRCP 72-73, 28 USC 636 ................................................... 2225
Forma pauperis 28 USC 1915 ......................................................................... 2225
Removal from state to federal court (and subsequent remand to state court) 28
USC 1446 and 1447 ......................................................................................... 2225
Stay of district court action, e.g., pending PTO action ......................................... 2226
Discovery FRCP 16, 26-37, 45 .......................................................................... 2228
Initial disclosures .............................................................................................. 2228
Protective orders ............................................................................................... 2228
Joint defense agreement .................................................................................... 2230
Interrogatories ................................................................................................... 2230
Admissions........................................................................................................ 2230
Depositions ....................................................................................................... 2231
Compelling discovery ....................................................................................... 2231
Expert testimony, fees ....................................................................................... 2233
Privileged information is exempt from discovery ............................................ 2234
Sanctions for discovery abuses ......................................................................... 2234
Document retention policies ............................................................................. 2237
Spoliation of evidence and documents, and sanctions for same ....................... 2238
Motion for Summary Judgment FRCP 56 ......................................................... 2242
Standard(s) for summary judgment .................................................................. 2248
Burden of proof ................................................................................................. 2251
[G]enuine dispute as to any material fact FRCP 56(a) .............................. 2255
[G]enuine dispute ...................................................................................... 2255
[M]aterial fact ............................................................................................ 2258
Summary judgment procedures FRCP 56(c) and (e) (former FRCP 56(e), i.e.,
that the non-movant must . . . set out specific facts . . . .) ............................. 2259
Affidavits, additional discovery FRCP 56(c)(4) and (d) ........................... 2262
When remand, reversal required ....................................................................... 2271
Summary judgment of infringement/noninfringement ..................................... 2271
Summary judgment of invalidity ...................................................................... 2282
Other summary judgment issues ....................................................................... 2282
Anticipation................................................................................................... 2282
Claim construction ........................................................................................ 2284
Cross motions................................................................................................ 2284
District courts role ....................................................................................... 2285
Enablement ................................................................................................... 2285
Inequitable conduct ....................................................................................... 2286
Inventorship .................................................................................................. 2288
Obviousness .................................................................................................. 2288

26
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Written description........................................................................................ 2290
Expert testimony FRCP 26(a)(2), (b)(4), (e)(1) and (2), 37(c)(1); FRE 702-706
............................................................................................................................... 2291
Admissibility of expert testimony Daubert (S.C.), FRE 702 ......................... 2291
Attorney argument is no substitute for expert testimony .................................. 2299
Basis for experts opinion FRE 703 ............................................................... 2300
Expert qualified to testify? ................................................................................ 2301
Patent law expert also as technical expert..................................................... 2302
Expert reports exclusion of expert testimony ................................................ 2303
Expert testimony cannot be conclusory, evasive .............................................. 2307
Expert opinion on ultimate legal conclusion is not required ............................ 2309
Expert testimony must be consistent with the facts .......................................... 2309
Expert testimony unnecessary for simple technology, vs. needed for complex
technology ......................................................................................................... 2310
Expert testimony to prove infringement ........................................................... 2312
Expert testimony to prove invalidity................................................................. 2314
Expert deposition testimony ............................................................................. 2315
Improper expert testimony ................................................................................ 2315
Expert appointed by the district court FRE 706(a) ........................................ 2316
Pretrial FRCP 16, 26(a)(3) ................................................................................ 2317
Pretrial conference, order FRCP 16 ............................................................... 2317
Pretrial disclosures FRCP 26(a)(3) ................................................................ 2317
Pretrial stipulations ........................................................................................... 2317
Sealing court documents ................................................................................... 2318
Trial FRCP 32, 38-53 ........................................................................................ 2318
Evidence ............................................................................................................ 2318
Generally ....................................................................................................... 2318
Motions in limine .......................................................................................... 2321
Witness testimony ......................................................................................... 2323
Jury trial, selection, instructions and verdict FRCP 38-39, 47-49, 51 ............ 2324
Jury trial - generally FRCP 38 ................................................................... 2324
Right to jury trial Seventh Amendment ..................................................... 2325
Jury selection FRCP 47 ............................................................................. 2328
Jury instructions/objections thereto FRCP 51 ........................................... 2328
Jury verdict FRCP 49................................................................................. 2330
Motion for JMOL FRCP 50 (jury), 52(c) (without jury) ................................... 2331
Standard(s) for JMOL ....................................................................................... 2335
FRCP 50(a) ....................................................................................................... 2342
FRCP 50(b) ....................................................................................................... 2346
Motion for new trial FRCP 50, 59(a)-(d) .......................................................... 2348
Judgment FRCP 52, 54-55, 57-62 ..................................................................... 2350
Bench trial FRCP 52(a) ................................................................................. 2350
Entry of judgment FRCP 58 .......................................................................... 2351
Certification of judgment FRCP 54(b) .......................................................... 2351
Amend or add findings, alter or amend judgment FRCP 52(b), 59(e) .......... 2351

27
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Relief from judgment FRCP 60 ..................................................................... 2352
Stay enforcement of judgment FRCP 62 ....................................................... 2356
Offer of judgment - FRCP 68 ........................................................................... 2357
Vacatur of judgment (upon settlement) ............................................................ 2357
Motion for attorney fees, costs FRCP 54(d) ...................................................... 2360
XII. STATUTORY INTERPRETATION ................................................................ 2360
A. Plain meaning of statutory language ................................................................. 2363
B. Tools of statutory construction ......................................................................... 2369
Canons of statutory construction .......................................................................... 2370
Legislative history................................................................................................. 2371
C. Other rules of statutory construction................................................................. 2373
XIII. IMMUNITY FROM PATENT SUIT ............................................................... 2374
A. Federal government .......................................................................................... 2374
Jurisdiction ............................................................................................................ 2374
28 USC 1498(a) ................................................................................................. 2375
Waiver of sovereign immunity ............................................................................. 2378
Invention Secrecy Act ........................................................................................... 2378
Taking under the Tucker Act ................................................................................ 2379
Government contractors ........................................................................................ 2379
B. States Eleventh Amendment .......................................................................... 2381
Immunity from patent infringement suits, defending DJ actions - generally ....... 2381
Immunity is waivable ........................................................................................ 2383
State officials .................................................................................................... 2386
C. Foreign government .......................................................................................... 2386
XIV. ATTORNEY-CLIENT PRIVILEGE AND WORK-PRODUCT IMMUNITY 2387
A. Attorney-client privilege vs. work-product immunity ...................................... 2387
B. Waiver of privilege ........................................................................................... 2388
C. Scope of waiver................................................................................................. 2389
XV. STATE AND OTHER FEDERAL LAW CLAIMS ......................................... 2390
A. OTHER FEDERAL LAW CLAIMS ................................................................ 2390
COPYRIGHTS ..................................................................................................... 2390
Standard of review/Choice of law..................................................................... 2390
Copyright infringement ..................................................................................... 2390
Generally ....................................................................................................... 2390
Ownership of copyright ................................................................................ 2393
Access and substantial similarity .................................................................. 2394
Expressions of ideas only are protectable ..................................................... 2396
Licensing/open source copyright licenses ................................................. 2397
Damages 17 USC 504 ............................................................................. 2398
Attorney fees 17 USC 505 ...................................................................... 2399
Other copyright-related issues .......................................................................... 2399
Architectural works ....................................................................................... 2399
Software ........................................................................................................ 2399
Copyright vs. contracts ................................................................................. 2400
DMCA........................................................................................................... 2400

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
LANHAM ACT (TRADEMARKS, TRADE DRESS, UNFAIR COMPETITION,
FALSE ADVERTISING) ..................................................................................... 2400
TRADEMARKS TTAB, District Court, and ITC ......................................... 2401
Generally ....................................................................................................... 2401
TTAB procedure ........................................................................................... 2402
Standard of review/Choice of law................................................................. 2402
Trademark, service mark - defined ............................................................... 2408
CAFC trademark cases ................................................................................. 2410
Trademark registration .................................................................................. 2414
Trademark continuum ................................................................................... 2415
Likelihood of confusion ................................................................................ 2429
Trademark infringement ............................................................................... 2445
Other Trademark Issues ................................................................................ 2450
TRADE DRESS ................................................................................................ 2464
Generally ....................................................................................................... 2464
Trade dress must be distinctive ..................................................................... 2465
Functional trade dress is not protectable ....................................................... 2466
UNFAIR COMPETITION................................................................................ 2468
FALSE ADVERTISING .................................................................................. 2470
STATE PRIVILEGE ............................................................................................ 2472
B. STATE LAW CLAIMS .................................................................................... 2472
Breach of confidential relationship ....................................................................... 2472
Breach of fiduciary duty ....................................................................................... 2472
Breach of contract ................................................................................................. 2473
Constructive trust .................................................................................................. 2476
Fraud ..................................................................................................................... 2476
Fraudulent concealment ........................................................................................ 2477
Fraudulent inducement of contract ....................................................................... 2477
Fraudulent misrepresentation ................................................................................ 2477
Intentional misrepresentation ................................................................................ 2477
Legal malpractice .................................................................................................. 2477
Partnerships ........................................................................................................... 2480
Ownership of patent(s) .......................................................................................... 2480
Tortious interference with prospective business relations (economic advantage) vs.
communicating patent rights ................................................................................. 2481
Tortious interference with contract ....................................................................... 2485
Trade libel ............................................................................................................. 2485
Trade secret misappropriation............................................................................... 2485
Unfair Competition ............................................................................................... 2490
Unfair Trade Act Claim ........................................................................................ 2490
Unjust enrichment ................................................................................................. 2491
C. FEDERAL PREEMPTION .............................................................................. 2491
Federal patent law preempts state law .................................................................. 2491
Patentees right to recover under state law is not preempted ................................ 2493
Types of federal preemption ................................................................................. 2495

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Ownership or license matters are not preempted .................................................. 2495
Supremecy Clause ................................................................................................. 2495
XVI. PTO PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE ............................................................ 2495
A. Request for information by the examiner ......................................................... 2496
B. Appeal to the BPAI of the patent examiners rejections................................... 2497
C. Section 145 actions ........................................................................................... 2501
D. Continuations/CIPs/Divisionals....................................................................... 2505
E. Patent term adjustment 35 USC 154(b) ...................................................... 2506
F. Maintenance Fees.............................................................................................. 2507
G. Other issues ....................................................................................................... 2509
XVII. CORRECTION OF PATENTS .................................................................... 2509
A. Correction of patents - generally....................................................................... 2509
Certificates of Correction 35 USC 254, 255 ................................................. 2509
Correction by the district court ............................................................................. 2511
B. Reissue and Reexamination .............................................................................. 2513
Reissue .................................................................................................................. 2515
Section 251 remedial in nature - correctable error......................................... 2516
New matter not permitted in reissue application .............................................. 2520
Broadening reissue two year limitation and rule against recapture ............... 2520
Intervening rights .............................................................................................. 2528
Reexamination ...................................................................................................... 2529
Claim construction ............................................................................................ 2529
Burden of proof ................................................................................................. 2529
Substantial new question of patentability ...................................................... 2530
Claims may not be broadened ........................................................................... 2535
Intervening rights .............................................................................................. 2537
Inter partes reexamination................................................................................. 2540
XVIII. INTERFERENCES/PRIOR INVENTION ................................................... 2542
A. Interferences/Prior invention 35 USC 102(g), 135, 146, 291 ................... 2542
Generally 35 USC 135(a)................................................................................ 2543
35 USC 135(b)(1) and (b)(2) One year bar rule ............................................ 2544
Two-way test applied for determining an interference-in-fact ............................. 2546
Burden of proof preponderance of the evidence ................................................ 2546
Construction of the count ...................................................................................... 2547
District court action 35 USC 146 (after BPAI decision)................................. 2547
District court action 35 USC 291 (interference proceeding by district court) 2550
Evidence ................................................................................................................ 2551
Priority of invention .............................................................................................. 2552
Anticipation and Obviousness .............................................................................. 2553
Written description................................................................................................ 2553
Termination of interference once priority determined is not improper ................ 2554
B. Prior invention priority - 35 USC 102(g) .................................................... 2554
Priority .................................................................................................................. 2554
Corroboration ........................................................................................................ 2562
Derivation ............................................................................................................. 2564

30
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
XIX. INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION 19 USC 1337..................... 2565
A. Generally ........................................................................................................... 2569
B. Domestic injury requirement ............................................................................ 2569
C. Jurisdiction and standing................................................................................... 2573
D. Infringement and invalidity defenses ................................................................ 2575
Infringement defenses ........................................................................................... 2575
Invalidity defenses ................................................................................................ 2576
E. Remedies general and limited exclusion orders; cease and desist order ....... 2576
F. Enforcement of ITC orders ............................................................................... 2578
G. Corresponding district court action ................................................................... 2579
XX. OWNERSHIP ................................................................................................... 2580
A. In general .......................................................................................................... 2580
Invention presumptively belongs to its creator ..................................................... 2580
Presumption that named inventors are the true inventors ..................................... 2581
Patent ownership is distinct from inventorship ..................................................... 2581
B. Contracts generally ........................................................................................... 2582
C. Assignments and Licenses ................................................................................ 2583
Generally ............................................................................................................... 2583
Assignments .......................................................................................................... 2584
Licenses................................................................................................................. 2590
Shop rights doctrine........................................................................................... 2594
XXI. DESIGN PATENTS ......................................................................................... 2595
A. Generally ........................................................................................................... 2595
B. Ornamental vs. functional 35 USC 171 ...................................................... 2596
C. Infringement and invalidity............................................................................... 2599
Infringement - generally ....................................................................................... 2599
Test for infringement ordinary observer test .................................................. 2604
Invalidity - generally ............................................................................................. 2612
Test for invalidity designer of ordinary skill standard ................................... 2616
XXII. PLANT PATENTS - and Plant Variety Protection Act................................ 2618
A. Plant Patents 35 USC 161-164 .................................................................. 2618
B. Plant Variety Protection Act (PVPA) ............................................................... 2619

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
I. APPELLATE/DISTRICT COURT
JURISDICTION/REVIEW

A. APPELLATE/DISTRICT COURT JURISDICTION

Subject matter jurisdiction - generally

Subject matter jurisdiction general principles

Court must have subject matter jurisdiction

- Subject matter jurisdiction is a threshold


requirement for a courts power to exercise
jurisdiction over a case Dow Jones (Wawrzynski,
9/6/13; Semiconductor Energy Laboratory,
2/11/13)

- CAFC always has jurisdiction over a case to


determine its jurisdiction C.R. Bard
(Wawrzynski, 9/6/13 (n.1))

- A court in the first instance must determine


whether or not it has subject matter jurisdiction,
even sua sponte, i.e., when the issue is not raised
or contested by either party (Wawrzynski, 9/6/13;
Aevoe, 8/29/13 (citing Entegris); Avid
Identification Systems, 4/27/10; Larson, 6/5/09;
Litecubes, 4/28/08 (determining that questions
relating to the extraterritorial reach of the Patent
and Copyright Acts were factual elements of the
claims, and not jurisdictional); Immunocept,
10/15/07; BIO, 8/1/07; Entegris, 6/13/07
(contempt order); Intl Electronic Technology,
1/26/07 (Order))

- Basis for the district courts judgment must


be clear for appellate review a judgment is
reviewable only if it is possible for the

32
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
appellate court to ascertain the basis for the
judgment challenged on appeal (Jang,
7/15/08 (district courts judgment was
ambiguous as to how claim constructions
affected infringement by the accused
products))

- CAFC has inherent jurisdiction to determine


its jurisdiction over an appeal, addresses
jurisdiction sua sponte (Larson, 6/5/09
(CAFC requested supplemental briefing on
whether the district court properly exercised
federal question jurisdiction); Immunocept,
10/15/07)

- Threshold question of CAFCs appellate


jurisdiction must be considered before
turning to the merits (Aevoe, 8/29/13;
Genetics Institute, 8/23/11 (CAFC had
jurisdiction over appeal of Section 291
action despite expiration of patent after the
district court entered judgment,
distinguishing Albert and patent claim
disclaimer from expiration); Avid
Identification Systems, 4/27/10; Larson,
6/5/09; Crown Packaging, 3/17/09; Hyatt,
12/23/08; Intl Rectifier, 2/11/08)

- CAFC jurisdiction after a settlement


agreement, i.e., whether there exists a live
controversy between the parties the CAFC
must decide on its own (Avid Identification
Systems, 4/27/10 (the CAFC ruling it had
jurisdiction because the challenger remained
free under the agreement to oppose the
appeal on the merits)); See also
Laserfacturing, 9/17/12 (nonprecedential
CAFC had jurisdiction where stipulated

33
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
waiver between the parties did not resolve
and render moot their infringement dispute
citing Kimberly-Clark for rule that
settlements generally render a case moot,
unless the case as a whole remains alive
because other issues have not become
moot)

- Unasserted, or withdrawn patent claims


(Plantronics, 7/31/13 (n.3: vacating the
district courts invalidity of any unasserted
claims citing Fox Group); Fox Group,
11/28/12 (district court erred in also holding
unasserted claims invalid because lacked
jurisdiction over them where no case or
controversy after the patentee narrowed the
scope of the asserted claims before the court
ruled on the parties SJ motions same as in
Streck and distinguishing Scanner Techs.);
Sandisk, 10/9/12 (no CAFC jurisdiction over
withdrawn patent claims prior to the district
courts final judgment); Streck, 1/10/12;
Scanner Techs., 6/19/08 (district courts
subject matter jurisdiction over the validity
of unasserted claims was based on the
challengers counterclaims))

- Supreme Courts original exclusive jurisdiction


when a state sues another state 28 USC 1251(a)
(U. Utah, 8/19/13 (rejecting argument that the
district court lacked subject matter jurisdiction
where a state university sued the citizens of
another state, rather than the state itself, and the
state was not a real and substantial party in interest
relying on split 2nd Circuit case and
distinguishing Supreme Court cases; see also J.
Moore, dissenting))

34
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Whether state has a core sovereign interest
in the case (U. Utah, 8/19/13 (state was not
an indispensable and real party in interest
because states do not have a core sovereign
interest in inventorship (not sufficiently
grand), since states cannot be inventors; see
also J. Moore, dissenting the dispute is
about ownership of patents between two
states, and Section 1251(a) covers all
controversies between two or more states,
and the state (UMass) was a real party in
interest, and the majority confuses the
Supreme Courts exclusive jurisdiction
under Section 1251(a) with its discretion to
decide a case between states))

Burden is on the party asserting jurisdiction

- Burden - party seeking to exercise jurisdiction in


its favor bears the burden of establishing that such
jurisdiction exists (SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07; Voda,
2/1/07)

Federal courts have limited jurisdiction

- Federal courts are not courts of general


jurisdiction, but only have limited jurisdiction
must act within the bounds of Article III of the
Constitution and the statutes enacted by Congress
pursuant thereto; for that reason, every appellate
court has a special obligation to satisfy itself of its
own jurisdiction, as well as that of the lower
courts, regardless of whether the parties are
prepared to concede it Bender (S.C.) (LabCorp,
3/11/10 (because federal courts are courts of
limited jurisdiction, the CAFC does not take

35
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
jurisdiction over cases simply because they relate
to the res judicata effect of a prior judgment of the
court; see also J. Dyk, dissenting); Larson, 6/5/09;
Crown Packaging, 3/17/09; Ilor, 12/11/08
(CAFCs scope of jurisdiction depended on
whether the district courts judgment could be
construed to dismiss defendants counterclaims or
alternatively include a FRCP 54(b) certification);
SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07; BIO, 8/1/07; Voda,
2/1/07; Thompson, 12/8/06; Highway Equipment,
11/21/06); See also Kippen, 8/2/12
(nonprecedential vacating the district courts
entry of judgment on contract claims that were not
plead, ruling that federal courts may not resolve
claims not actually submitted for adjudication (10th
Cir.))

- District courts possess only the power


authorized by the Constitution and statute,
i.e., both Constitutional and statutory basis
are required for a court to have subject
matter jurisdiction (Voda, 2/1/07)

- Eleventh Amendment immunity


defense jurisdictional bar that need
not be raised in the trial court for
appeals court to consider issue
Edelman (S.C.) (Baum R&D,
10/10/07)

- Justiciable claim it must be a real and


substantial controversy admitting of specific
relief through a decree of a conclusive
character, as distinguished from an advisory
opinion Aetna Life Ins. Co. (S.C.)
(Sandisk, 10/9/12 (no controversy and
jurisdiction over patent claims the patentee
withdrew before the district courts final

36
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
judgment); In re Sones, 12/23/09 (See J.
Newman, dissenting the majority issued an
advisory opinion, because the case was
mooted by the appellants filing of a second
trademark application which resolved the
issue on appeal regarding the first
application); In re Omeprazole, 8/20/08
(district court had the authority and
jurisdiction after patent expiration to reset
the effective approval date of ANDAs under
section 271(e)(4)(A) to reflect the patentees
market exclusivity period))

- Under Article III, courts are not


permitted to resolve issues when it is
unclear that the resolution of the
question will resolve a concrete
controversy between interested parties
Coffman (S.C.) (Jang, 7/15/08
(referring to the risk of rendering an
advisory opinon when unclear as to
how the district courts claim
constructions affected infringement))

CAFCs and district courts arising under


jurisdiction

Generally standards, tests

- 28 USC 1331 and 1338(a) (district court


jurisdiction) 28 USC 1295(a)(1) (CAFC
jurisdiction) the CAFC and district courts have
exclusive jurisdiction to review cases which arise
under the patent laws Christianson v. Colt
(S.C.); under 1295(a)(1), the CAFC has
exclusive jurisdiction over appeals from a final
decision of a district court (see Final Judgment
Rule) if the jurisdiction of the district court was

37
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
based, in whole or in part, on section 1338
(Wawrzynski, 9/6/13; Forrester, 5/16/13 (district
court lacked jurisdiction over state law business
tort claims based on allegedly false statements
about U.S. patent rights concerning conduct taking
place entirely in Taiwan, and thus the possibility of
inconsistent judgments between state and federal
courts regarding patent scope did not arise in the
case citing Gunn v. Minton (S.C.)); Gunn v.
Minton, 2/20/13 (S.C.) (district court lacked
jurisdiction over state law legal malpractice claim,
where patent law issues were not sufficiently
substantial to create federal jurisdiction); Minkin,
5/4/12 (federal jurisdiction over state law, legal
malpractice claim; see also J. OMalley,
concurring issue needs en banc review);
Landmark Screens, 4/23/12 (federal jurisdiction
over state law fraud claim against patent attorney;
see also J. OMalley, concurring issue needs en
banc review); USPPS, 4/17/12 (federal jurisdiction
over state law claim for fraud and breach of
fiduciary duty against patent attorney; see also J.
OMalley, joined by J. Mayer, concurring
jurisdiction issue needs en banc review; see also J.
Prost, concurring disagreeing with J. OMalley);
Warrior Sports, 1/11/11 (CAFC had jurisdiction to
decide whether the district court improperly
dismissed for lack of Section 1338 jurisdiction);
Clearplay, 4/21/10 (no CAFC jurisdiction where
the case did not arise under the patent laws since
each of the claims in the complaint (relating to a
dispute stemming from the parties patent license
agreement) was based on at least one alternative,
non-patent law theory of liability); HIF Bio,
3/31/10 (CAFC had jurisdiction to decide that the
district court abused its discretion by declining
supplemental jurisdiction and remanding the
complaint to state court, where two causes of

38
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
action arose under Section 1338) [on remand
from S.C. after reversing the CAFCs 2007
decision; see also 6/14/10 nonprecedential
Order amending portion of opinion]; LabCorp,
3/11/10 (transferring appeal to the Tenth Circuit
where the action was a state law contract dispute
over know-how royalties brought based on
diversity jurisdiction; see also J. Dyk, dissenting
the CAFC had jurisdiction in part because the case
related to the res judicata effect of a prior arising
under CAFC judgment); Davis, 3/2/10
(jurisdiction over legal malpractice claim which
depended on patentability); Larson, 6/5/09
(because the plaintiff lacked standing, the district
court improperly exercised jurisdiction over the
plaintiffs action to correct inventorship under
Section 256); Jacobsen, 8/13/08 (CAFC had
jurisdiction over copyright infringement claim
where claim also was sought for DJ of patent
noninfringement); Litecubes, 4/28/08; Dominant
Semiconductors, 4/23/08; Immunocept, 10/15/07;
BIO, 8/1/07; Entegris, 6/13/07; Intl Electronic
Technology, 1/26/07 (Order)); ALSO, Section
1338(a) provides that the district courts shall have
original and exclusive jurisdiction of any civil
action arising under any Act of Congress
relating to patents, plant variety protection,
copyrights and trademarks (Astrazeneca, 2/9/12
(Section 271(e)(2) creates an artificial act of
infringement by the filing of an ANDA, for which
the district court has jurisdiction -- ruling that once
Congress creates an act of infringement,
jurisdiction in the district courts is proper under
Section 1338(a) - Allergan); LabCorp, 3/11/10;
Litecubes, 4/28/08 (questions relating to the
extraterritorial reach of the Patent and Copyright
Acts were elements of the claims, and not
jurisdictional); Air Measurement Techs., 10/15/07;

39
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Immunocept, 10/15/07; BIO, 8/1/07; Thompson,
12/8/06); ALSO, the district court must have had
jurisdiction over at least one claim in the case
under section 1338 (Apotex, 10/27/03); See also
Memorylink, 5/2/11 (Order) (nonprecedential
denying motion to transfer appeal to the Seventh
Circuit where the district court and the CAFC had
jurisdiction over legal malpractice claim based on
underlying inventorship dispute, stating that the
CAFC must look to what the plaintiff would be
required to prove to prevail on the claim for
relief); WARF, 10/24/07 (nonprecedential
holding that the Bayh-Dole Act is outside the
CAFCs section 1295(a) jurisdiction, stating that
mere inclusion in Title 35 does not make a statute
a patent law under which a claim may arise;
petition for rehearing en banc was denied 1/08,
with J. Rader dissenting from the denial, with
whom J. Newman, J. Lourie, and J. Moore joined:
the Bayh-Dole Act, . . . is most certainly a patent
law, providing reasons)

- A final decision, as defined by the


Supreme Court, is a decision issued by the
trial court which ends the litigation on the
merits and leaves nothing for the court to do
but execute the judgment (Crown
Packaging, 3/17/09 (no question that final
judgment document ended the litigation on
the merits); SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07;
Entegris, 6/13/07; Intl Electronic
Technology, 1/26/07 (Order)); See Final
Judgment Rule

- District courts proper exercise of


jurisdiction under section 1338(a) the
claim must arise under the federal patent
laws in terms of a well-pleaded complaint

40
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(Wawrzynski, 9/6/13; Forrester, 5/16/13
(rejecting possible federal patent law
preemption argument as a basis for federal
jurisdiction, because preemption is a defense
to the plaintiffs suit, which as a defense
does not appear on the face of a well-
pleaded complaint, and thus does not
authorize removal to state court);
Semiconductor Energy Laboratory, 2/11/13;
Minkin, 5/4/12 (federal jurisdiction over
legal malpractice claim; see also J.
OMalley, concurring issue needs en banc
review); Carter, 5/24/10; Clearplay, 4/21/10;
LabCorp, 3/11/10 (Under the well-pleaded
complaint rule, arising under jurisdiction is
determined from the plaintiffs statement of
his or her own claim unaided by anything
alleged in anticipation or avoidance of
defenses which it is thought the defendant
may interpose Christianson (S.C.));
Davis, 3/2/10; Touchcom, 8/3/09
(jurisdiction over a legal malpractice claim
involving patent validity); Larson, 6/5/09
(complaint not expressly pled to correct
inventorship under Section 256 was well-
pleaded as DJ claims under Florida law
relating to inventorship); Excelstor Tech.,
9/16/08; Litecubes, 4/28/08 (holding that
whether the allegedly infringing act
happened in the United States was a factual
element of the claims for patent and
copyright infringement, not a prerequisite
for subject matter jurisdiction); Dominant
Semiconductors, 4/23/08; Air Measurement
Techs., 10/15/07; Immunocept, 10/15/07;
BIO, 8/1/07; Thompson, 12/8/06; Venture
Industries, 8/7/06; Bonzel, 3/2/06;
Medimmune, 10/18/05; Nippon Telephone,

41
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
7/13/05; Apotex, 10/27/03); See also Lange,
3/27/13 (Order) (nonprecedential -
remanding for the district court to dismiss
attorney malpractice complaint because the
district court lacked jurisdiction over the
malpractice claims in view of Gunn v.
Minton (S.C.)); Byrne, 11/18/11
(nonprecedential addressing federal
jurisdiction over a state legal malpractice
claim requiring determining the patentability
of a hypothetical patent claim) [On 3/22/12,
a petition for rehearing en banc was
denied in a precedential order; Judge
Dyk, with whom Judges Newman and
Lourie joined, concurred in the denial of
the petition, stating: I see no reason to
revisit this courts repeated holdings that
where the outcome of malpractice cases
turns on federal patent law, federal
jurisdiction exists.; Judge OMalley
dissented from the denial in a 28-page
opinion, stating: It is time we stop
exercising jurisdiction over state law
malpractice claims. I dissent from the
courts refusal to consider this matter en
banc so that the case law through which
we have expanded the scope of our
jurisdiction to these purely state law
matters can be reconsidered and
revamped.; the U.S. Supreme Court
remanded Byrne for the CAFCs
consideration in light of the Courts
decision in Gunn v. Minton see below]

[On 10/5/12, the U.S. Supreme Court


granted certiorari in Gunn v. Minton, in
which the petitioner appealed from a case
in Texas state court, and the petitioner

42
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
questions exclusive federal jurisdiction
over state law malpractice claims; On
2/20/13, a unanimous Supreme Court
held that a malpractice claim against a
patent attorney does not arise under the
patent laws and was properly decided in
state court. The Court reasoned in part
that federal courts are not bound by state
precedents, and that allowing state courts
to resolve attorney malpractice cases
would not undermine the development of
a uniform body of patent law. The Court
thus overruled Air Measurement Techs.,
10/15/07, and Immunocept, 10/15/07, in
which the CAFC held that federal courts
have exclusive jurisdiction to hear patent
malpractice actions]

- Substantial question of patent law -


jurisdiction also extends to claims that
depend on resolution of a substantial
question of patent law based on well-
pleaded complaint (Forrester, 5/16/13 (no
substantial question of patent law under
Gunn v. Minton (S.C.) in state law tort
claims); Semiconductor Energy Laboratory,
2/11/13 (doctrine of assignor estoppel failed
to provide substantial issue of federal law
justifying federal jurisdiction over state law
claims); Minkin, 5/4/12 (state law claim for
legal malpractice); Landmark Screens,
4/23/12 (jurisdiction over state law fraud
claim); USPPS, 4/17/12 (state law claim for
fraud and breach of fiduciary duty against
patent attorney); ABB, 2/17/11 (n.3);
Warrior Sports, 1/11/11 (jurisdiction existed
where state law legal malpractice claim
required the court to resolve the merits of

43
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
the plaintiffs underlying infringement suit);
Clearplay, 4/21/10; LabCorp, 3/11/10;
Davis, 3/2/10 (one of multiple legal
malpractice claims depended on
patentability under U.S. law); Touchcom,
8/3/09; In re Ciprofloxacin, 10/15/08
(jurisdiction where fraud on the PTO
involved substantial question of patent law);
Excelstor Tech., 9/16/08; Litecubes,
4/28/08; Dominant Semiconductors,
4/23/08; Air Measurement Techs., 10/15/07
(patent infringement question is necessary
element of attorney malpractice claim and
raises substantial, contested question of
patent law intended for resolution in federal
court arising under jurisdiction under
1338); Immunocept, 10/15/07 (claim scope
determination involved in attorney
malpractice claim presented substantial
question of patent law jurisdiction
conferred under 1338); BIO, 8/1/07;
Thompson, 12/8/06; Bonzel, 3/2/06;
Medimmune, 10/18/05; Nippon Telephone,
7/13/05; Apotex, 10/27/03); the CAFC has
jurisdiction when patent law is a necessary
element of a well-pleaded, otherwise non-
patent, claim Christianson v. Colt (S.C.)
(BIO, 8/1/07 (patent law was necessary
element of plaintiffs federal preemption
claim); Thompson, 12/8/06; Parental Guide
of Texas, 4/21/06)

- Christianson (S.C.) two-part test a


federal courts exclusive jurisdiction
under section 1338(a) extends only to
those cases in which a well-pleaded
complaint establishes either 1) that
federal patent law creates the cause of

44
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
action, or 2) that the plaintiffs right
to relief necessarily depends on
resolution of a substantial question of
federal patent law, in that patent law
is a necessary element of one of the
well-pleaded claims Christianson
(S.C.) (Semiconductor Energy
Laboratory, 2/11/13 (district court
correctly dismissed complaint based
on the doctrine of assignor estoppel,
which satisfied neither of the above
requirements); Minkin, 5/4/12 (legal
malpractice claim); Landmark
Screens, 4/23/12; Warrior Sports,
1/11/11; Carter, 5/24/10 (jurisdiction
where patent law (ethical rules for
patent attorneys in the CFR and
MPEP) was a necessary element in a
malpractice claim, under Christianson
(S.C.)); Clearplay, 4/21/10 (no CAFC
jurisdiction where there was at least
one theory of liability in the
complaint for each of six asserted
state law claims for which it was not
necessary to resolve an issue of
federal patent law, addressing the
alternative, non-patent law theories of
liability for the six state law claims);
LabCorp, 3/11/10; Davis, 3/2/10
(district court had jurisdiction where
patent law was a necessary element of
a claim for legal malpractice which
depended on patentability);
Touchcom, 8/3/09 (district court had
subject matter jurisdiction over state
legal malpractice claim involving
analysis of patent claims and validity,
citing Immunocept) ; Larson, 6/5/09;

45
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Excelstor Tech., 9/16/08; Litecubes,
4/28/08; Dominant Semiconductors,
4/23/08 (transfer of appeal from the
Ninth Circuit was appropriate where
patent law was a necessary element of
unfair competition claims based on
the patentees communication of its
patent rights); Air Measurement
Techs., 10/15/07 (patent infringement
is a necessary element of legal
malpractice claim, and thus section
1338 jurisdiction); Immunocept,
10/15/07 (claim drafting error was
necessary element of malpractice
cause of action, and thus there was
section 1338 jurisdiction; also citing
Air Measurement Techs., 10/15/07,
and earlier cases concluding that
patent infringement was a necessary
element of various claims); BIO,
8/1/07; Thompson, 12/8/06); See also
Personalized Media, 8/23/12
(nonprecedential no original patent
jurisdiction over breach of contract
claim); Nolen, 2/1/12 (Order)
(nonprecedential the CAFC lacked
jurisdiction where infringement claim
first required judicial action (recission
of assignment agreements, i.e.,
relating to patent ownership, a state
law issue) to vest title in the party
alleging infringement citing Jim
Arnold); In re Electro-Mechanical
Indus., 12/22/09 (nonprecedential
CAFC had jurisdiction over
bankruptcy estimation where the
underlying claim depended entirely
on patent law)

46
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- CAFC limited to an analysis of
the well-pleaded complaint in
determining whether patent law
is a necessary element of the
claims (Wawrzynski, 9/6/13 (a
few references in the complaint
to the plaintiffs patent as
background fell far short of a
well-pleaded complaint of
patent infringement, and
instead raised only state law
claims; the complaint needed
infringement allegations, etc.);
Excelstor Tech., 9/16/08)

- Alternative theories claim supported


by alternative theories in the
complaint may not form the basis for
section 1338 jurisdiction unless patent
law is essential to each of those
theories Christianson (S.C.); well-
pleaded complaint must establish that
the right to relief necessarily depends
on resolution of a substantial question
of patent law, or the district courts
jurisdiction does not arise under
section 1338 (Semiconductor Energy
Laboratory, 2/11/13 (rejecting the
plaintiffs application of the artful
pleading rule where state law claims
were supported by alternative state
law theories that did not necessarily
require resolution of any disputed
substantial question of federal patent
law (assignor estoppel)); Warrior
Sports, 1/11/11; Clearplay, 4/21/10
(each of six state law claims relating

47
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
to a license agreement between the
parties did not require resolution of a
patent law issue, stating based on
Christianson (S.C.) -- in response to
the appellants argument that all of
the claims in the complaint stemmed
ultimately from a dispute founded on
allegations of patent infringement --
that [i]t is not enough that patent law
issues are in the air. Instead,
resolution of a patent law issue must
be necessary to every theory of relief
under at least one claim in the
plaintiffs complaint.); HIF Bio,
3/31/10 (inventorship determination
was not essential to the resolution of
various state law claim(s)); Davis,
3/2/10 (complaint presented multiple
claims for legal malpractice, rather
than one claim supported by
alternative theories (with one relating
to U.S. patent law and the other
relating to foreign patent law, which
thus did not raise any issue of U.S.
patent law); defining claim in a
complaint); Air Measurement Techs.,
10/15/07; Thompson, 12/8/06)

- State law claim - federalism concerns


of Grable (S.C.) (i.e., the Grable test)
must also be satisfied for a state law
claim, i.e., whether a state-law claim
necessarily raises a stated federal
issue, actually disputed and
substantial, which a federal forum
may entertain without disturbing any
congressionally approved balance of
federal and state judicial

48
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
responsibilities Grable (S.C.)
(Forrester, 5/16/13; Gunn v. Minton,
2/20/13 (S.C.) (district court lacked
jurisdiction over state law legal
malpractice claim, reasoning that
while such claims may necessarily
raise disputed questions of patent
law, those questions are not
substantial in the relevant sense);
Semiconductor Energy Laboratory,
2/11/13 (affirming dismissal of state
law claims); USPPS, 4/17/12 (J.
OMalley, joined by J. Mayer,
concurring jurisdiction lacking,
based on Grable factors);
Memorylink, 4/11/12 (Order) (J.
OMalley, dissenting from the denial
of en banc review of a prior Rule 36
affirmance); Byrne, 3/22/12 (Order)
(see below); LabCorp, 3/11/10 (state
law claim for breach of contract did
not depend on resolution of an
actually disputed and substantial
question of patent law, where the
patent infringement question was
undisputed and decided in a prior
CAFC appeal; see also J. Dyk,
dissenting); Air Measurement Techs.,
10/15/07; Immunocept, 10/15/07);
See also Byrne, 11/18/11
(nonprecedential addressing Grable
(S.C.) and federalism concerns with
regard to jurisdiction over a state legal
malpractice claim involving the
validity of a hypothetical patent
claim) [On 3/22/12, a petition for
rehearing en banc was denied in a
precedential order; Judge Dyk,

49
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
with whom Judges Newman and
Lourie joined, concurred in the
denial of the petition; Judge
OMalley dissented from the denial
in a 28-page opinion, arguing
federalism concerns based on
Grable (S.C.)]

- Strong federal interest in


adjudicating patent
infringement claims in federal
court because patents are issued
by a federal agency; federal
judges also have experience in
claim construction and
infringement matters (Air
Measurement Techs., 10/15/07)

- Doctrine of complete
preemption converting state
law claims into federal causes
of action (Clearplay, 4/21/10
(n.1: rejecting argument based
on the doctrine for CAFC
jurisdiction over state law
claims))

Defenses, counterclaims do not arise


under patent law

[***the AIA amended Section 1338 on


9/16/11 to include any claim for relief
under patent law as within a district
courts arising under jurisdiction No
State court shall have jurisdiction over
any claim for relief arising under any act
of Congress relating to patents . . .; also,

50
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
the AIA version of Section 1295 gives the
CAFC jurisdiction over appeals based on
a civil action in which a party has
asserted a compulsory counterclaim
arising under any Act of Congress
relating to patents.]

- [Old law] Defenses, counterclaims a case


raising a patent law defense, which includes
a claim asserted as a counterclaim, does not,
for that reason alone, arise under patent
law (Wawrzynski, 9/6/13 (the CAFC lacked
jurisdiction over a pre-AIA case in which a
patent counterclaim was filed after the AIA
effective date, and the complaint containing
and aligning only with state law claims
(contract allegations) confirmed that the
plaintiff did not intend to assert patent rights
-- thus transferring appeal to the Third
Circuit); Excelstor Tech., 9/16/08
(complaint failed to meet either prong of the
Christianson test because the asserted claim
of violation of the patent exhaustion doctrine
is a defense to patent infringement and not a
cause of action; patent law also was not a
necessary element of the claims by a patent
licensee, which instead raised state law
claims against the licensor for breach of
contract and fraud); Air Measurement
Techs., 10/15/07; BIO, 8/1/07 (mirroring
rule of Speedco inapplicable to claim to
enjoin enforcement of D.C. statute on
grounds of preemption; CAFCs jurisdiction
was based on plaintiffs well-pleaded
complaints), even if the defense is
anticipated in the complaint, and even if the
parties admit the defense is the only
question at issue in the case Christianson

51
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(S.C.) (LabCorp, 3/11/10; Excelstor Tech.,
9/16/08; Air Measurement Techs., 10/15/07;
Thompson, 12/8/06); See also Derosa,
7/13/12 (Order) (nonprecedential -
transferring appeal to the Fourth Circuit, and
noting that the AIA amendment to 28 USC
1295(a)(1), which includes patent
compulsory counterclaims within the
CAFCs jurisdiction, applies only to a civil
action commenced on or after 9/16/11, the
enactment date of the law)

Subject matter jurisdiction vs. decision on


the merits

- Subject matter jurisdiction does not fail


simply because the plaintiff might be unable
to ultimately succeed on the merits; thus, a
failure to prove the allegations in the
complaint requires a decision on the merits,
not a dismissal for lack of subject matter
jurisdiction Bell (U.S.) (Astrazeneca,
2/9/12 (district court erred in dismissing
infringement claim under Section 271(e)(2)
based on lack of jurisdiction, rather than on
the merits, because the district courts
jurisdiction is met once a patentee alleges
that anothers filing of an ANDA infringes
under Section 271(e)(2)); Litecubes, 4/28/08
(whether the allegedly infringing activity
happened within the United States is an
element of the claim for patent infringement
under section 271(a), not a prerequisite for
subject matter jurisdiction))

- Limited and narrow exception to the


Bell rule if the federal claim pled is

52
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
immaterial and made solely for the
purposes of obtaining jurisdiction or
is wholly insubstantial and
frivolous (Litecubes, 4/28/08)

Well-pleaded complaint rule

- Well-pleaded complaint rule when the


complaint includes any issue exclusively
assigned to the CAFC, the CAFC must then
exercise jurisdiction of all issues in the case;
jurisdiction is determined at the outset of the
litigation and does not change (Wawrzynski,
9/6/13; LabCorp, 3/11/10 (citing rule that
the courts jurisdiction depends on the state
of things at the time of the action brought,
and that after vesting, it cannot be ousted by
subsequent events Keene (S.C.); see also
J. Dyk, dissenting); vs. Vornado (S.C.)
when a patent count is raised in a
counterclaim, the regional circuit has
jurisdiction of the appeal (Medimmune,
10/18/05)

Examples subject matter jurisdiction?

- Breach of contract (e.g., patent


license) claim no subject matter
jurisdiction based on section 1338 (
Clearplay, 4/21/10 (no CAFC
jurisdiction over six state law claims
relating to a patent license
agreement); LabCorp, 3/11/10 (see
also J. Dyk, dissenting); Excelstor
Tech., 9/16/08; Bonzel, 3/2/06); See
also DeRosa, 1/3/13 (Order)

53
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(nonprecedential the CAFC lacked
jurisdiction over appeal of action
seeking recission of patent assignment
agreement based on breach, and to
restore ownership rights in the
patent); Personalized Media, 8/23/12
(nonprecedential no original patent
jurisdiction where the issue regarding
license scope did not relate to patents)

- Presence of patent in litigation does


not by itself require resolution of a
substantial question of patent law
(LabCorp, 3/11/10; Nippon
Telephone, 7/13/05)

- Res judicata effect of a prior CAFC


judgment no subject matter
jurisdiction (LabCorp, 3/11/10
(disagreeing with J. Dyk, dissenting,
that the court had jurisdiction because
a suit to enforce or determine the res
judicata effect of a prior judgment
arising under the federal patent laws
is itself a suit that arises under the
federal patent laws))

- State court (e.g., breach of contract)


vs. federal district court jurisdiction
(Excelstor Tech., 9/16/08; Bonzel,
3/2/06)

- Unjust enrichment claim patent law


not necessary element of well-
pleaded unjust enrichment claim
(Thompson, 12/8/06)

54
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Declaratory judgment action

- Declaratory judgment action the CAFC


looks not to the DJ complaint, but to the
hypothetical action (well-pleaded complaint)
that the declaratory defendant would have
brought Speedco (ABB, 2/17/11 (same
rule applies when the DJ plaintiffs claim is
a non-federal (state law) claim or defense to
an infringement claim); LabCorp, 3/11/10
(declining CAFC jurisdiction where the DJ
defendants hypothetical claim was for
breach of contract under state law and did
not necessarily raise a patent law issue that
was actually disputed and substantial under
the Grable (S.C.) test))

- Jurisdiction over a DJ action exists


where there is a federal cause of
action (e.g., infringement) but only a
state law defense (ABB, 2/17/11
(making rule even though the
Supreme Court and other Circuits
have not decided the issue))

Transfer of appeal from regional circuit

- Transfer of case from regional circuit to the


CAFC if transfer decision is plausible, the
CAFC has jurisdiction (Parental Guide of
Texas, 4/21/06)

Statutory limitations to jurisdiction

- Critical to distinguish between a statutory


limitation that is truly jurisdictional (e.g., statutes

55
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
conferring subject matter jurisidiction only for
actions brought by specific plaintiffs, or for
specific amounts of relief) and one that is simply
an element of the claim that must be established on
the merits Arbaugh (S.C.) (Litecubes, 4/28/08
(that infringement must occur within the United
States to violate section 271(a) is an element of
the claim and not a jurisdictional prerequisite;
Arbaugh (S.C.) issued a readily administrable
bright line rule unless Congress clearly states
that a threshold limitation on a statutes scope shall
be jurisdicational, courts should treat the
restriction as non-jurisdictional in character; also
concluding that there is nothing unique about a
statutory limitation relating to the extraterritorial
scope of a statute that would convert what is
otherwise a factual element of the claim to a
restriction on a courts subject matter jurisdiction))

Covenant not to sue

On 1/9/13, the U.S. Supreme Court in Already v. Nike


ruled that a trademark plaintiffs voluntary dismissal of
its infringement suit, together with granting the defendant
a (broad) covenant not to sue, rendered the case moot by
removing the district courts Article III jurisdiction and
barring its consideration of the defendants counterclaim
of trademark invalidity. Justice Kennedy concurred,
joined by Justices Thomas, Alito and Sotomayor, to
emphasize that covenants are not an automatic means of
abandoning a suit to avoid adverse adjudication.

- Covenant not to sue eliminates case or controversy


for patent-related counterclaims, thus depriving the
district court of jurisdiction (Wawrzynski, 9/6/13
(covenant not to sue together with an admission of
noninfringement eliminated case or controversy to

56
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
support the district courts subsequent judgment of
noninfringement); Already, 1/9/13 (S.C.) (see
above); Dow Jones, 5/28/10 (district court had no
jurisdiction over the patent to render an
anticipation judgment after the patentee granted a
covenant not to sue); Revolution Eyewear, 2/13/09
(covenant not to sue for past infringement which
did not extend to future sales of the same product
sued upon did not divest the district court of
jurisdiction over declaratory counterclaims
applicable to future infringement); Highway
Equipment, 11/21/06); See also Enzo Biochem
(Order), 2/6/09 (nonprecedential leaving for the
district court to decide in the first instance whether
a stipulation not to sue on a patent mooted
counterclaim relating to the patent); See also
Declaratory judgment jurisdiction Covenant not
to sue

- Exception in Hatch-Waxman cases see


Declaratory judgment jurisdiction
Covenant not to sue

- Whether a covenant not to sue will divest


the trial court of jurisdiction depends on
what is covered by the covenant (Already,
1/9/13 (S.C.) (broad covenant not to sue
divested the district court of jurisdiction
over counterclaim of trademark invalidity);
Dow Jones, 5/28/10 (did not matter for
divesting the district court of jurisdiction
that the covenant not to sue did not include
the accused infringers parent company,
since a parent company is not liable for the
acts of its subsidiary); Revolution Eyewear,
2/13/09); See also Cooper Notification,
8/30/13 (nonprecedential district court
retained jurisdiction to dismiss patent claims

57
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
from suit with prejudice even though the
patentee had withdrawn the claims, based on
the patentees stipulation to dismissal with
prejudice followed by later withdrawing the
stipulation, stating rule that a district court
retains jurisdiction over a patent suit unless
there is a clear, unequivocal statement that
the potential infringer will not be sued
citing SanDisk)

- When the patentee gives a covenant not to


sue the alleged infringer, the district court
retains jurisdiction to determine disposition
of infringement claims under FRCP 41, and
claim for attorney fees under 35 USC 285
(Samsung Electronics, 4/29/08 (district court
retained jurisdiction of accused infringers
claim for attorney fees); Monsanto, 1/25/08
(district court had independent jurisdiction
based on a request for attorneys fees under
Section 285 to hold patents no longer in the
case were unenforceable for IC;
unenforceability of patent(s) automatically
follows holding of IC); Highway
Equipment, 11/21/06); See also Cooper
Notification, 8/30/13 (nonprecedential no
abuse of discretion by the district court in
dismissing patent claims with prejudice,
based on the patentees stipulation to
dismissal and promises to never again assert
the claims, applying same rule citing
Highway Equipment)

Dismissal on jurisdictional grounds

- Dismissal on jurisdictional grounds appropriate?

58
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Degree of intertwinement of jurisdictional
facts and facts underlying the substantive
claim determines the appropriate procedure
for resolving disputed facts (DDB
Technologies, 2/13/08 (dismissal by the
district court on jurisdictional grounds was
appropriate, holding no intertwinement
between jurisdictional issues and
infringement/validity issues, citing the
circuits which look to the degree of
intertwinement between jurisdictional facts
and facts underlying the merits of the cause
of action to determine whether dismissal on
jurisdictional grounds is appropriate or
whether resolution of the jurisdictional
issues must await until summary judgment
proceedings or a trial of the merits; see also
dissent, J. Newman the court improperly
designated various merits issues as
jurisdictional))

Jurisdictional discovery

- Discovery relating to jurisdiction

- Request for discovery on jurisdictional,


standing issues (Abbott, 1/13/12 (properly
denied where the plaintiff lacked standing
based on not owning the patents-in-suit, in
view of unambiguous contract language);
DDB Technologies, 2/13/08 (limited
discovery granted to determine whether the
patents in suit fell within the scope of an
employment agreement))

- Plaintiff must be given an opportunity


for discovery appropriate to the

59
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
motion to dismiss (DDB
Technologies, 2/13/08 (5th Cir.; where
jurisdictional and merits issues were
intertwined but separable, the district
court abused its discretion in denying
jurisdictional discovery))

Jurisdiction over PTO appeals

- BPAI jurisdiction over final rejections of the


BPAI 28 USC 1295(a)(4)(A) and 35 USC 141
(Loughlin, 7/11/12 (Section 1295(a)(4)
incorporates a finality requirement; the BPAIs
decision on priority was a final, adverse judgment
over which the CAFC had jurisdiction, where the
appellant under Board Rule 127(b) requested an
adverse judgment in an interference); Yorkey I,
4/7/10 (interference); In re Comiskey, 1/13/09 (en
banc); In re Trans Texas Holdings, 8/22/07
(reexamination); In re Kahn, 3/22/06); See also
Fleming, 8/12/13 (nonprecedential dismissing
case against PTO defendants where the plaintiff
never appealed the examiners final rejection to the
BPAI, the CAFC applying rule that exhaustion of
administrative remedies is a jurisdictional
prerequisite to filing a civil lawsuit arising from
the denial of a patent citing Leighton (D.C.
Cir.)); Wong, 7/9/09 (nonprecedential review of
the denial of a petition to revive lies in the U.S.
District Court); Avocent Redmond (Order), 2/6/09
(nonprecedential dismissing appeal for lack of
jurisdiction where the case was stayed pending
reexamination)

- Section 145 actions the CAFC has exclusive


jurisdiction of appeals of 145 actions (i.e.,
actions brought in the District Court for D.C. under

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
35 USC 145) under 28 USC 1295(a)(4)(C)
(Hyatt, 12/23/08; Hyatt, 6/28/07)

- Remand order for further agency


proceedings is generally not a final
judgment that forms the basis for the
CAFCs jurisdiction; however, there is an
exception to the final judgment rule under
Sullivan (S.C.) rule applied judiciously and
specifically only in rare situations where
denying appellate review would likely result
in the permanent loss of the agencys ability
to appeal the lower courts determination
(e.g., when a controlling Q of law) -
Travelstead (Hyatt, 12/23/08 (substantial
risk if appellate review denied that the PTO
would permanently lose its ability to
challenge the district courts interpretation
of section 1.192(c)(7)); Hyatt, 6/28/07
(MPEP rule))

Final Judgment Rule

Generally

- Final Judgment Rule 28 USC 1295(a)(1) 28 USC


1338 (patent cases) mirrors 28 USC 1291; parties may
appeal only a final decision of a district court
judgment must dismiss the entire case; if rule not met, the
CAFC dismisses the appeal for lack of jurisdiction
(Bosch, 6/14/13 (en banc); Sandisk, 10/9/12 (CAFC
lacked jurisdiction over claims the patentee withdrew
before the district courts final judgment); Orenshteyn,
7/26/12 (Order) (district courts order granting sanctions
was not final decision until amount of sanctions decided;
see also J. Newman, dissenting); Falana, 1/23/12 (district
courts exceptional case finding and attorney fees award
under Section 285 were not final decisions and

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
appealable before the amount of fees were quantified
Special Devices); Spread Spectrum, 9/26/11 (no CAFC
jurisdiction where the district courts order staying case
pending the result of another district court case was not a
final appealable order, where exceptions did not apply);
Crown Packaging, 3/17/09 (final judgment where
decision made as to every claim, including counterclaim
in previous order); Ilor, 12/11/08 (dismissing appeal
other than the denial of PI, where the district courts
judgment was construed not to dismiss the entire case,
and thus was not final); PSN Illinois, 5/6/08 (stipulated
judgment and dismissal was a final judgment); Nisus,
8/13/07 (no final decision for nonparty); SafeTCare Mfg.,
8/3/07; Entegris, 6/13/07; Pods, 4/27/07; Walter Kidde,
3/2/07; *Intl Electronic Technology, 1/26/07 (Order);
Enzo Biochem, 7/13/05; Pause Technology, 3/14/05;
Inland Steel, 4/9/04; E-Pass, 8/20/03; Nystrom, 8/8/03);
See also August Tech., 11/18/13 (nonprecedential civil
contempt order is not a final judgment, and thus is not
immediately appealable); PPC, 4/28/11 (nonprecedential
n.2: proper to appeal a final decision of the ITC on a
subset of asserted patents, because need not wait for a
final resolution concerning the other patents Allied);
Ping Yip, 5/28/10 (nonprecedential dismissal of
complaint, but with leave to amend, is not a final
judgment); Kersey, 11/18/09 (nonprecedential
dismissing appeal for lack of jurisdiction where the
district courts denial without prejudice of an application
for leave to file a complaint in forma pauperis was not a
final judgment); Air Turbine Tech., 4/24/09
(nonprecedential despite the separately appealable
denial of attorney fees under FRCP 54 (FRAP 4), there
was no final judgment and CAFC jurisdiction over the
denial of attorney fees under a contract fee provision
until the district court determined the amount of other
fees awarded, stating that [t]o find otherwise would
require Atlas to appeal related issues within a single case
at different times. Such a piecemeal appellate review is

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
inconsistent with this courts limitation of jurisdiction to
final judgments and would undermine judicial
economy); Enzo Biochem (Order), 2/6/09
(nonprecedential); Koninklijke Philips (Order), 2/6/09
(nonprecedential); CSIRO, 10/23/08 (nonprecedential
denying a motion to intervene is a final judgment subject
to appellate review; the CAFC may consider the merits of
the specific underlying reason for which intervention was
sought); Sollami Co., 7/18/08 (nonprecedential
dismissing appeal for lack of jurisdiction where the
district courts order granting stay pending reissue
proceedings was not an appealable final judgment when
the appellant failed to show that the order effectively put
it out of court); See also Subject Matter Jurisdiction
generally

- Finality is a predicate of the CAFCs jurisdiction,


because Art. III of the U.S. Constitution requires
that jurisdiction be premised on a case and
controversy without jurisdiction, courts would
be rendering advisory opinions (*Intl Electronic
Technology, 1/26/07 (Order))

- Federal courts have only limited jurisdiction,


and thus possess only that power authorized
by the Constitution and statute, which
cannot be expanded by judical decree
(SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07; BIO, 8/1/07)

- Final judgment is a decision by the district court


that ends the litigation on the merits and leaves
nothing for the court to do but execute the
judgment Parr (S.C.) (Fresenius USA, 7/2/13
(prior judgments were not sufficiently final to
render them immune from the effect of the PTOs
cancellation of the asserted claims during
reexamination, as affirmed by the CAFC on
appeal); Bosch, 6/14/13 (en banc); Spread

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Spectrum, 9/26/11; Crown Packaging, 3/17/09;
SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07; Entegris, 6/13/07); See
also August Tech., 11/18/13 (nonprecedential);
Max Impact, 4/26/13 (Order) (nonprecedential
dismissing appeal as premature where no final
judgment); Pieczenik, 5/3/11 (Order)
(nonprecedential with the exception of certain
interlocutory orders, the CAFC only has
jurisdiction from final decisions of the district
court, citing S.C. rule); Ping Yip, 5/28/10
(nonprecedential applying rule); Randall May,
5/11/10 (nonprecedential CAFC jurisdiction
under 28 USC 1292(c)(2) (breach of contract
claim and infringement finding but no accounting);
Enzo Biochem (Order), 2/6/09 (nonprecedential)

- Decision on the merits is a final decision,


whether or not there remains for
adjudication a request for attorney fees
Budinich (S.C.) (Falana, 1/23/12)

- Exceptional case determination is a


separately appealable judgment (with
separate notice of appeal) which itself
must be final White (S.C.) (Falana,
1/23/12)

- Decision to award attorney fees under


Section 285 is not final and
appealable before the award has been
quantified Special Devices (Falana,
1/23/12)

- Civil (vs. criminal) contempt orders are


interlocutory, not final judgments, and thus
not appealable, even when a fine is assessed
Doyle, Fox (S.C.) (Aevoe, 8/29/13
(contempt order enforcing or interpreting an

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
injunction is generally not appealable until
final judgment, which is particularly so
where no sanction has yet been imposed for
the contempt citing Entegris); Entegris,
6/13/07); See also August Tech., 11/18/13
(nonprecedential compensatory civil
contempt applied (vs. criminal contempt,
which is immediately appealable); citing
Entegris)

- Must be a clear and unequivocal


manifestation by the trial court that the
decision ends the case (Crown Packaging,
3/17/09 (district court clearly intended final
judgment to resolve and dispose of all the
claims and counterclaims in the action))

- Parties must ascertain whether or not an appealed


judgment is final, and the CAFC shall cite counsel
for the failure to do so!! the parties are required
to certify that the judgment being appealed is final;
Fed. Cir. R. 28(a)(5) (and Fed. R. App. P.
28(a)(4)(B)) requires that the jurisdictional
statement include a representation that the
judgment or order appealed from is final or, if not
final, the basis for appealability) (SafeTCare Mfg.,
8/3/07; *Intl Electronic Technology, 1/26/07
(Order))

- Finality of judgments generally (Fresenius USA,


7/2/13 (distinguishing between different concepts
of finality, and their effect on preclusion))

Collateral order doctrine

- Collateral order doctrine narrow exception to the


final judgment rule when claims are immediately

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
appealable permits the appeal of trial court
orders affecting rights that will be irretrievably lost
in the absence of an immediate appeal at a
minimum must satisfy three conditions -
Richardson-Merrell (S.C.) (Apple, 8/23/13 (three
conditions were satisfied for the appeal of order
unsealing confidential information); U. Utah,
8/19/13 (denial of motion to dismiss based on
sovereign immunity of state university); Baum
R&D, 10/10/07 (denial of Eleventh Amendment
(state) immunity; appeal after trial on the merits
was proper); Intel, 7/14/06 (foreign sovereign
immunity); Competitive Techs., 6/30/04); See also
August Tech., 11/18/13 (nonprecedential see
n.4); Air Turbine Tech., 4/24/09 (nonprecedential
denial of costs or attorney fees under FRCP 54 is
collateral to, and separately appealable from, the
merits of an underlying suit FRAP 4; here,
however, the decision on appeal was the
interpretation of a contractual fee provision clause,
and not a Rule 54 motion)

- Denial of claim of immunity is typically


appealable immediately (Intel, 7/14/06)

Denial of summary judgment motion, motion to


dismiss not appealable

- Denial of SJ motion generally non-final and non-


appealable based on the final judgment rule
(Meadwestvaco, 9/26/13 (waiver of indefiniteness
on appeal by failing to raise issue at bench trial
after being denied SJ on issue because of material
fact issues for trial); Plantronics, 7/31/13 (the
CAFC declining to address arguments based on
issues the district court denied on SJ); Function
Media, 2/13/13 (rejecting the patentees appeal of

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
denial of SJ of infringement where
noninfringement was found at trial, applying 5th
Cir. law); LaserDynamics, 8/30/12 (n.5:
distinguishing entry of SJ from denial of SJ for
CAFC jurisdiction); Advanced Fiber, 4/3/12
(denial of SJ of validity not appealable where
requirements for pendent appellate jurisdiction
were not met, and the denial was not challenged as
an alternative basis for affirmance); Classen,
8/31/11 (see also J. Moore, dissenting CAFC
should have affirmed the denial of SJ of
anticipation); Advanced Software Design, 6/2/11
(appellate courts lack jurisdiction because denial of
SJ does not settle or even tentatively decide
anything about the merits of the claim Switz.
Cheese Assn (S.C.)); Comaper, 3/1/10 (infringers
challenge to the district courts denial of SJ was
improper, citing CAFC and 3rd Cir. law)); M.
Eagles Tool Warehouse, 2/27/06 (denial of SJ is
ordinarily not appealable)), BUT, subject to
exception - when the motion involves a purely
legal question and the factual disputes resolved at
trial do not affect the resolution of that legal
question (Revolution Eyewear, 4/29/09 (n.2: denial
of SJ motion for invalidity of claim (based on lack
of WD) was appealable where question of whether
there were fact issues to be tried relating to validity
was waived)); See also Nissim, 12/11/12
(nonprecedential remanding where the district
courts order denying motion for summary
enforcement of settlement agreement did not end
the litigation on the merits and therefore was not
final)

Non-appealable order is merged into subsequent final


judgment

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Non-appealable order may be considered to be
merged into a subsequent final judgment (Crown
Packaging, 3/17/09; Invitrogen, 11/18/05)

Stay order generally not appealable

- Stay order generally is not a final appealable order


-- but stay order is appealable if it puts the plaintiff
effectively out of court e.g., permanently or for a
protracted or indefinite period, or would have res
judicata effect (Spread Spectrum, 9/26/11 (order
staying suit against the defendants customers
pending the outcome of suit against the defendant
was not appealable where no exceptions applied));
See also EveryMD, 8/8/12 (Order)
(nonprecedential order staying litigation pending
inter partes reexamination was not appealable)

- Narrow exception where the stay effectively


disposes of the district court action Slip
Track (Spread Spectrum, 9/26/11); See also
EveryMD, 8/8/12 (Order) (nonprecedential)

Pending claims, counterclaims render district court


judgment non-final

- Pending claims and/or counterclaims, or


alternatively, no FRCP 54(b) certification by the
district court, render the district courts judgment
non-final for purposes of appeal (Spread Spectrum,
9/26/11 (stay order was not a final judgment where
did not dispose of claims and counterclaims); Ilor,
12/11/08 (judgment not final where counterclaims
not disposed of and the Rule 54(b) certification
requirements were not met); SafeTCare Mfg.,
8/3/07; *Intl Electronic Technology, 1/26/07

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(Order)); See also Enzo Biochem (Order), 2/6/09
(nonprecedential); Koninklijke Philips (Order),
2/6/09 (nonprecedential); parties can stipulate that
district court dismiss claim or counterclaim
without prejudice, leaving no issues unresolved
(Lava Trading, 4/19/06 (counterclaims pending,
despite final judgment; see J. Mayer, dissenting);
Pause Technology, 8/16/05; Terlep, 8/16/05; Enzo
Biochem, 7/13/05)

- Affirmative defenses, but no counterclaims


presented - summary judgment of
noninfringement was proper final judgment
when defendant presented only affirmative
defenses and no counterclaims (Boss
Control, 6/8/05)

- District courts statement that the judgment


is final is by itself insufficient to establish
the CAFCs appellate jurisdiction (and the
parties cannot rely on it); for an appealable
judgment, the district court must issue a
judgment that decides or dismisses all
claims and counterclaims for each party
(i.e., a final judgment) or that makes an
express Rule 54(b) determination that there
is no just reason for delay (Ilor, 12/11/08
(district court simply stating in the judgment
that there is no just cause for delay did not
satisfy the requirements for immediate
appeal based on Rule 54(b); cites other
circuit court decisions for this rule);
SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07); See also August
Tech., 11/18/13 (nonprecedential district
courts interlocutory order titled Judgment
was not a final appealable order); Enzo
Biochem (Order), 2/6/09 (nonprecedential
district courts clear intention to end the case

69
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
was not sufficient for final judgment where
no express ruling made regarding pending
invalidity counterclaim)

- Sua sponte dismissal of claims,


counterclaims by the district court
(without notice to and input from the
parties) is improper (Ilor, 12/11/08
(citing 6th Cir. law))

- Discretion to dismiss (without prejudice)


counterclaim(s) when district court finds
noninfringement; mootness (Advanced
Software Design, 6/2/11 (CAFC noting that
the district courts dismissal of invalidity
counterclaims without prejudice after
granting SJ of noninfringement was not
appealed); Inpro II Licensing, 5/11/06;
Liquid Dynamics, 1/23/04)

- District courts dismissal of the action


dismissed the entire case, including the
counterclaims (Ilor, 12/11/08 (district
courts dismissal of the action in the
judgment failed to dismiss the entire case,
distinguishing Walter Kidde and stating that
the context in which the word action is
used cannot be ignored and thus ruling that
the judgment disposed of only the plaintiffs
half of the case, but not the defendants
counterclaims); Walter Kidde, 3/2/07)

- Judgment on certain counterclaims obviated


by judgment on another, to give final
judgment (Invitrogen, 10/5/05)

Final judgment rule is not satisfied by stipulation

70
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Final judgment rule cannot be satisfied by
stipulation, agreement of the parties (Sandisk,
10/9/12 (parties stipulation did not create the right
to appeal the district courts claim construction
rulings with respect to withdrawn claims where
such right otherwise did not exist); Scanner Techs.,
6/19/08; SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07; Intl Electronic
Technology, 1/26/07 (Order); Lava Trading,
4/19/06 (final judgment satisfied by stipulation);
Silicon Image, 1/28/05; Competitive Techs.,
6/30/04)

- Every federal appellate court has a special


obligation to satisfy itself of its own
jurisdiction even though the parties are
prepared to concede it Bender (S.C.)
(Sandisk, 10/9/12; Crown Packaging,
3/17/09; SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07; *Intl
Electronic Technology, 1/26/07 (Order))

- Absence of an objection by the


appellee is insufficient to vest the
court with subject matter jurisdiction
(SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07)

- Stipulation of final judgment - waiver


(Taylor Brands, 12/9/10 (Order) (addressing
waiver on appeal of issues settled on and
agreed to in stipulated final judgment, i.e.,
consent judgment); Toro, 1/20/04)

- Stipulated final judgment does not bar


an appeal of the underlying judgment
where parties consent only to the
form of the (final) judgment, and not
the substance of the judgment i.e.,
no waiver of the right to appeal, vs.

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
stipulated final judgment after a
settlement agreement or voluntary
dismissal (or with respect to collateral
issues not resolved by the district
courts order) waives the right to
appeal, in the absence of expressly
reserving the right Thomsen (S.C.)
(Taylor Brands, 12/9/10 (Order)
(party did not waive right to appeal
where agreed only to the form, and
not the substance, of a stipulated final
judgment))

Stipulation of noninfringement, invalidity based


on the district courts claim construction

- Stipulation of noninfringement, or invalidity


- stipulation filed by the parties asking the
district court to enter an appealable final
judgment of noninfringement (or invalidity)
based on the courts claim construction (3M
Innovative, 8/6/13; Typhoon Touch, 11/4/11
(affirming judgment of noninfringement
after affirming claim construction); Baran,
8/12/10 (stipulation remained effective after
affirming the district courts claim
constructions); Fresenius, 9/10/09
(infringement judgment cannot be altered by
a modified claim construction where the
accused infringer unconditionally stipulated
that the accused device infringed, and then
proceeded to argue invalidity at trial);
Nystrom, 9/8/09 (waiver of DOE
infringement in second action where
patentee stipulated to noninfringement
without reference to equivalents in the first
action must consider whether want to

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
pursue DOE infringement in the event the
district court construes claim terms
narrowly!); Paragon Solutions, 5/22/09
(stipulation made no mention of the facts to
support an alternative basis for affirming the
district courts noninfringement judgment
thus, make sure the stipulation contains all
the facts supporting noninfringement!);
Howmedica, 9/2/08 (the parties identified a
single claim term as dispositive of the
infringement issue, distinguishing Jang); U.
Texas, 7/24/08 (stipulation also based on SJ
of noninfringement); Jang, 7/15/08 (consent
judgment based on the parties stipulation
was remanded for clarification where the
stipulation did not explain why the district
courts claim construction resulted in
noninfringement by the accused products);
Helmsderfer, 6/4/08); See also Aerotel,
7/26/11 (nonprecedential where the parties
stipulate to noninfringement and invalidity
after a claim construction ruling, the CAFC
need only address the district courts
construction of the claims Altiris);
Southern Mills, 5/14/10 (nonprecedential
reversing consent judgment of
noninfringement based on the district courts
narrow construction); Lydall, 9/8/09
(nonprecedential stipulation of
noninfringement under which a decision on
appeal negating either of two appealed
constructions would negate the stipulation);
Cartner, 6/17/09 (nonprecedential final
judgment of invalidity entered after
stipulation that the claims were invalid for
lack of adequate WD support based on the
district courts claim construction); Tuna
Processors, 4/23/09 (nonprecedential

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
construing the scope of a stipulated final
judgment of noninfringement)

- Stipulated judgment of
noninfringement vacated once the
CAFC modifies the district courts
claim construction Howmedica
(Paragon Solutions, 5/22/09)

District court findings are not a final judgment

- Findings by the district court are not a final


decision within the meaning of 28 USC
1295(a)(1) (Nisus, 8/13/07)

District courts holding must form the basis of


appealed judgment

- Holding of the district court on an issue is not


properly before the CAFC on appeal if the holding
did not form the basis of any appealed judgment
(Star Scientific, 8/25/08 (CAFC unable to address
the district courts holding on priority where SJ
motion of anticipation was denied and not
appealed))

Reinstatement of appeal

- Reinstatement of appeal - allowed, if final judgment or


FRCP 54(b) certification by district court (Trading
Techs., 2/25/10 (the CAFCs jurisdiction ripened upon
the district courts entry of final judgment nunc pro
tunc); SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07; Inpro II Licensing,
5/11/06; Enzo Biochem, 7/13/05; Pause Technology,
3/14/05)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Appeal from the PTO

- Appeal to the CAFC from the PTO need final agency


action to appeal, i.e., an affirmance of an examiners final
rejection by the BPAI (Mikkilineni, 11/9/10
(nonprecedential))

Appeal from the ITC

- ITC order appealable under Section 1337(c)?


(Interdigital, 6/7/13 (interpreting Section 1337(c) and
holding that an ITC order terminating an investigation as
to a respondent in favor of arbitration was an appealable
final determination under Section 1337(c); see also J.
Lourie, dissenting based on the text and legislative
history of Section 1337(c), the CAFC lacked jurisdiction
over the appeal from the ITC order terminating the
investigation for arbitration))

Certification FRCP 54(b)

- Certification FRCP 54(b) (Bayer, 4/16/13 (n.3:


rejecting argument of no CAFC jurisdiction because the
district court had not decided damages, where the district
court granted partial final judgment under Rule 54(b)); In
re Cyclobenzaprine, 4/16/12 (nunc-pro-tunc Rule 54(b)
certificate from the district court moved for after filing
the appeal was sufficient to establish the CAFCs
jurisdiction, although the motion should have been filed
prior to filing the appeal); HTC, 1/30/12 (parties
stipulated to final judgment on SJ of invalidity ruling);
Imation, 11/3/09 (reversing judgment regarding scope of
patent cross-license); Ilor, 12/11/08 (stating the
requirements for a Rule 54(b) certification); Cat Tech.,
5/28/08; Warner-Lambert, 9/21/07; Arminak, 9/12/07
(counterclaims stayed); SafeTCare Mfg., 8/3/07; Intl
Electronic Technology, 1/26/07 (Order); O2 Micro,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
11/15/06; Lava Trading, 4/19/06; Pause Technology,
3/14/05; Versa, 12/14/04; Apotex, 10/27/03; Nystrom,
8/8/03); See also August Tech., 11/18/13
(nonprecedential no appealable judgment under Rule
54(b)); Max Impact, 4/26/13 (Order) (nonprecedential
dismissing appeal because there was no final judgment
despite the language used in the district courts order
dismissing patent infringement claim, or Rule 54(b)
judgment, and multiple counts and counterclaims
remained pending before the district court); Warsaw
Orthopedic, 8/2/12 (Order) (nonprecedential dismissing
appeal that was based on the district court entering a final
judgment under Rule 54(b), ruling that a Rule 54(b)
judgment (which gives the CAFC jurisdiction over a
claim that is final except for an accounting under 28
USC 1292(c)(2)) is not final where the district court has
not yet determined ongoing royalties, because an ongoing
royalty is not the same as an accounting for
infringement damages); Imagecube, 6/20/11
(nonprecedential Rule 54(b) judgment entered
dismissing all of the patentees claims with prejudice, at
the request of the patentee who waived issues other than
claim construction by stipulating that it could not prove
infringement and thus the case was final with respect to
the defendant); Tyco Healthcare, 1/27/11 (Order)
(nonprecedential denying dismissal of appeal where
there was a final judgment despite pending IC and
antitrust counterclaims, where SJ of invalidity ended
litigation on the merits; two-fold inquiry under Rule
54(b))

- Patentee requested judgment of noninfringement


after district court issued narrow construction
(Computer Docking Station, 3/21/08 (motion for
SJ of noninfringement granted, while motion for
entry of judgment of noninfringement and
certification rejected); MBO Labs, 1/24/07
(summary judgment); MIT, 9/13/06 (stipulation);

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Inpro II Licensing, 5/11/06 (stipulation); Lava
Trading, 4/19/06 (stipulation); Versa, 12/14/04)

- Stipulation by patentee of noninfringement,


and dismissal without prejudice of invalidity
counterclaim (Inpro II Licensing, 5/11/06)

- Stipulated judgment (of


noninfringement) must identify which
of the many claim construction issues
are dispositive? (Jang, 7/15/08
(consent judgment based on stipulated
judgment was remanded for
clarification where the judgment did
not explain how claim constructions
related to the accused product); MIT,
9/13/06)

- Summary judgment of noninfringement,


with dismissal of invalidity counterclaim
without prejudice (O2 Micro, 11/15/06)

- Pending claim (e.g., counterclaim) cannot be


impliedly dismissed by the district court; claim
must be expressly dismissed via certification under
FRCP 54(b) (Ilor, 12/11/08 (requirements of Rule
54(b) not met for counterclaims); SafeTCare Mfg.,
8/3/07; Lava Trading, 4/19/06 (counterclaims not
dismissed prior to final judgment, but appeal
allowed); Pause Technology, 3/14/05); See also
Allergan, 5/6/13 (Order) (nonprecedential same
as Lakim Indus. the district court had not yet
entered a final judgment regarding infringement of
additional patents, and the CAFC directed the
parties to immediately file a joint request for
certification under Rule 54(b)); Lakim Indus.,
5/3/13 (Order) (nonprecedential dismissing
appeal for lack of jurisdiction where invalidity

77
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
counterclaim was pending and there was thus no
final judgment, subject to reinstatement after the
district court entered a final judgment or
certification under Rule 54(b), followed by filing
another notice of appeal citing Pause Tech.)

- Bare recitation of the no just reason for


delay standard of Rule 54(b) is not
sufficient, by itself, to properly certify an
issue for immediate appeal; the district court
must set forth its basis for certifying the
judgment (Ilor, 12/11/08 (citing Moores
Federal Practice and 6th and 11th Circuit
cases in ruling that it must be apparent,
either from the district courts order or from
the record itself, that there is a sound reason
to justify departure from the general rule
that all issues decided by the district court
should be resolved in a single appeal of a
final judgment; here, 1) the judgment
neither cited Rule 54(b) nor set forth the
circumstances justifying immediate appeal,
but merely stated that there was no just
cause for delay, and 2) there otherwise was
no reason based on the record justifying
immediate appeal of issues, rather than in
connection with the final judgment))

- Scope of Rule 54(b) judgment whether claim


construction issues were properly before the CAFC
on appeal?; whether the scope of the Rule 54(b)
certification was broad enough to allow arguments
based on certain claim terms on appeal? (Warner-
Lambert, 9/21/07)

Injunctions/Interlocutory Orders

Injunctions

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Injunctions 28 USC 1292(a)(1) and (c) confers
jurisdiction on the CAFC to hear appeals from patent-
related orders granting, continuing, modifying, refusing
or dissolving injuctions, or refusing to dissolve or modify
injunctions (Aevoe, 8/29/13; Bosch, 10/13/11; Ilor,
12/11/08 (affirming denial of PI, while dismissing the
remaining claims on appeal based on lack of final
judgment); Procter & Gamble, 12/5/08; Erico Intl,
2/19/08 (PI); Entegris, 6/13/07 (CAFC without
jurisdiction over contempt order); Ormco, 8/30/06;
Cytologix, 9/21/05; Medimmune, 6/1/05); See also
Mikkelsen, 8/16/13 (nonprecedential n.2: reaching the
same result as the 11/2/12 Order below, and adding that
the entry of the injunction order implicitly denied the
pending Rule 60(b) motion, at least as to the injunction
citing 5th and 7th Cir. cases); In re Cyclobenzaprine,
2/14/13 (nonprecedential appeal from a request to
modify a (preliminary) injunction prospectively
appellate review of the grant or denial of prospective
modification is confined to the propriety of the denial of
the motion, and does not extend to the propriety of the
entry of the underlying injunction (rule prevents a party
from circumventing the time bar to appeal from the
underlying injunction); the movant failed to show the
required changed circumstances to warrant
modification); Mikkelsen Graphic Engr, 11/2/12 (Order)
(nonprecedential denying the appellees motion to
dismiss appeal of order granting injunction for lack of
jurisdiction, despite the district court not having ruled yet
on the appellees motions under FRCP 60(b) and 37(b));
Duhn Oil Tool, 1/19/10 (Order) (nonprecedential the
district courts order imposing an affirmative obligation
on the accused infringer was an express injunction, which
was appealable even though the enjoined party
volunteered to halt the allegedly infringing uses, since the
order prevented the enjoined party from changing its
mind before trial); Automated Merchandising Systems,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
12/16/09 (nonprecedential only entry of PI order
required by Section 1292(a)(1) for appellate jurisdiction)

- 28 USC 1292(a) is narrowly construed, only a


limited exception to the final judgment rule;
litigant must show that interlocutory order might
have serious, perhaps irreparable consequences,
and that the order can be effectually challenged
only by immediate appeal Carson (S.C.) (Bosch,
10/13/11 (above showing need not be made on
appeal of interlocutory order that expressly grants
or denies a permanent injunction Carson
requirements apply only where there is no order
specifically granting or denying injunctive relief,
but rather argued that the appealed order had the
practical effect of granting or denying such relief
Cross Medical Prods.); Procter & Gamble, 12/5/08
(district courts order staying litigation pending
reexamination effectively denied the patentees
motion for PI, and thus satisfied the Carson (S.C.)
requirements); Entegris, 6/13/07); See also Duhn
Oil Tool, 1/19/10 (Order) (nonprecedential
appellant was not required to show serious or
irreparable consequences where the district courts
order was an immediately appealable PI under 28
USC 1292(c)(1))

- Interlocutory order clarifying or interpreting,


rather than modifying or continuing (i.e.,
prolonging or extending) an injunction is not
appealable (Aevoe, 8/29/13 (dismissing
appeal for lack of jurisdiction where the
district courts order appealed from clarified,
rather than modified, a PI applying 9th Cir.
law (whether an order modifies, rather than
clarifies or interprets, an injunction depends
on whether it substantially alters the legal
relations of the parties, which to determine

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
requires reviewing the substance of the
order) citing Entegris); Entegris, 6/13/07);
See also In re Cyclobenzaprine, 2/14/13
(nonprecedential)

- CAFC may have jurisdiction over appeal


where a district courts interlocutory order
effectively amounts to (i.e., has the
practical effect of) modifying, granting,
refusing, dissolving, or continuing an
injunction (Spread Spectrum, 9/26/11
(rejecting argument that stay order
effectively enjoined the plaintiff from suing
the defendants customers, stating: If every
stay qualified as an injunction, all stays
would be immediately appealable under
Section 1292(a)(1)); Procter & Gamble,
12/5/08 (CAFC had jurisdiction where the
district court effectively denied the
patentees motion for PI (without
considering the merits of the four PI factors)
by granting the accused infringers motion
for stay pending reexamination); Entegris,
6/13/07 (contempt order relating to PI
merely interpreted, rather than modified or
continued, injuction, and thus not
appealable)); See also Duhn Oil Tool,
1/19/10 (Order) (nonprecedential
affirmative obligation imposed in the district
courts order was an appealable express
injunction)

- Supreme Court has made clear that a


litigant must show more than that the
order has the practical effect of
granting or refusing an injunction for
an interlocutory order to be
immediately appealable Carson

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(S.C.) (Spread Spectrum, 9/26/11
(district courts stay order did not
involve an injunction))

- CAFC has jurisdiction of appeal from permanent


injunction, even if no final judgment 28 USC
1295(a)(1) (Ormco, 8/30/06)

Interlocutory orders

- Interlocutory orders - 28 USC 1292(a)(1) appeal from


interlocutory order regarding injunction the CAFCs
appellate jurisdiction pursuant to 28 USC 1292(c)(1)
(Bosch, 10/13/11; Entegris, 6/13/07; Qualcomm,
10/20/06 (arbitration); Cross Medical Prods., 9/30/05)

- Order expressly granting or denying injunction


appealable under section 1292(a)(1); different
from an interlocutory order that has the practical
effect of granting or denying injunction (e.g., order
granting SJ of noninfringement), in which event
apply Carson (S.C.) factors (Bosch, 10/13/11
(interlocutory order expressly denying injunction
appealable); Spread Spectrum, 9/26/11; Procter &
Gamble, 12/5/08 (CAFC had jurisdiction where
the district courts grant of the accused infringers
motion for stay pending reexamination had the
practical effect of denying the patentees motion
for PI without considering the PI factors on the
merits); Cross Medical Prods., 9/30/05); See also
Duhn Oil Tool, 1/19/10 (Order) (nonprecedential
citing Cross Medical Prods.)

- Underlying SJ orders also reviewable because they


are inseparably connected to the merits of the PI
(Cross Medical Prods., 9/30/05)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- 28 USC 1292(a)(1) - district court order denying
an injunctive order, i.e., motion to compel
arbitration, appealable under FAA, even if no final
judgment (Microchip Tech., 5/13/04)

- Interlocutory order, judgment appeal thereof 28 USC


1292(b) (district courts order involves a controlling
question of law as to which there is a substantial ground
for difference of opinion and that an immediate appeal
from the order may materially advance the ultimate
termination of the litigation) and (c) (Bosch, 6/14/13 (en
banc) (addressing exception to final judgment rule in
Section 1292(c)(2) see below); Spread Spectrum,
9/26/11; Sky Technologies, 8/20/09; Regents of U. Cal.,
2/28/08; Air Measurement Techs., 10/15/07; Intl
Gamco, 10/15/07; Regents of U. Cal., 2/14/07 (Order);
Voda, 2/1/07 (foreign patent infringement claims); Intel,
7/14/06; Symbol, 9/9/05; Pause Technology, 3/14/05;
Silicon Image, 1/28/05; Nystrom, 8/8/03); See also
Fujitsu, 9/11/13 (Order) (nonprecedential denying
permission to appeal under Section 1292(b) regarding the
issue of whether a foreign parent company patent owner
may recover lost profits damages for its wholly-owned
U.S. subsidiarys lost sales; denied at least because
liability for patent infringement was undecided, and thus
granting the appeal on the lost profits issue would not
resolve any controlling question of law; see also J.
OMalley, dissenting); Bosch, 8/7/12 (Order)
(nonprecedential the CAFC sua sponte granted a
hearing en banc and requested the parties to file
briefs on the following questions: 1) Does 28 USC
1292(c)(2) (which provides that the CAFC shall have
exclusive jurisdiction (2) of an appeal from a
judgment in a civil action for patent infringement
which would otherwise be appealable to the [CAFC]
and is final except for an accounting) confer
jurisdiction on the CAFC to entertain appeals from
patent infringement liability determinations when a

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
trial on damages has not yet occurred?, and 2) Does
28 USC 1292(c)(2) confer jurisdiction on the CAFC
to entertain appeals from patent infringement liability
determinations when willfulness issues are
outstanding and remain undecided?; On 6/14/13, the
en banc CAFC answered that Section 1292(c)(2)
grants the court jurisdiction over appeals where the
district court has exercised its discretion to bifurcate
the issues of damages and willfulness from those of
liability, therefore holding yes for No. 1 (in a 7-2
decision (Judges Rader, Newman, Lourie, Dyk, Prost,
Moore, and Reyna; Judges OMalley and Wallach,
dissenting)) and yes for No. 2 (in a 5-4 decision
(Judges Rader, Newman, Lourie, Dyk, and Prost;
Judges Moore, Reyna, OMalley, and Wallach,
dissenting)), interpreting the term accounting to
include a damages trial and willfulness issues]; Metso
Minerals, 5/3/12 (Order) (nonprecedential appeal from
judgment which was final except for an accounting,
under Section 1292(c)(2)); Kimberly-Clark, 1/10/11
(Order) (nonprecedential granting permissive appeal to
decide discoverability of privileged documents arising
from mediation and arbitration proceedings); Shire
(Order), 2/6/09 (nonprecedential granting permission to
appeal order relating to the preclusive effect of an earlier
litigated claim construction)

- CAFCs jurisdiction applies to, and is limited by,


the order certified to the court, but is not tied to the
particular question formulated by the district court,
and thus the CAFC may consider all issues
discussed within the order Yamaha Motor (S.C.)
(Sky Technologies, 8/20/09)

- Doctrine of pendent jurisdiction at the appellate


level the CAFCs review of properly appealable
interlocutory order (e.g., PI order) also may
include review of otherwise nonappealable orders

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(Ilor, 12/11/08 (declining to exercise discretion sua
sponte to consider along with the district courts
order denying a PI the district courts decision
granting SJ for noninfringement, where the parties
made no request for the CAFC to exercise such
discretion) consider the extent that review of the
appealable order will involve consideration of
factors relevant to the otherwise nonappealable
order (Procter & Gamble, 12/5/08 (along with
review of the district courts effective denial of the
patentees motion for a PI, the CAFC also had
jurisdiction over the district courts decision to
stay the litigation pending reexamination))

- Denial of a PI and stay order must be


considered together on appeal (Procter &
Gamble, 12/5/08 (citing 9th Cir. law))

- CAFC must exercise its own discretion in deciding


whether it will grant permission to appeal an
interlocutory order certified by a trial court 28
USC 1292(c)(1), 1292(d)(2) (Regents of U.
Cal., 2/28/08; Air Measurement Techs., 10/15/07;
Regents of U. Cal. (Order), 2/14/07); See also
Fujitsu, 9/11/13 (Order) (nonprecedential only
granted under rare circumstances; see also J.
OMalley, dissenting deciding the issues would
allow the parties to determine the value and risks
of the case, and save time and expense, stating that
the courts decision unnecessarily multiplies the
potential costs of patent litigation, despite an
opportunity to help hold them down);
Schwendimann, 4/26/13 (Order) (nonprecedential
CAFC declining to accept interlocutory appeal
regarding assignment and standing issue, based on
the arguments in the motion papers); Kimberly-
Clark, 1/10/11 (Order) (nonprecedential
discovery of privileged documents); Shire (Order),

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
2/6/09 (nonprecedential granting permission to
appeal order relating to preclusive effect of earlier
litigated claim construction); Sky Technologies,
9/10/08 (nonprecedential granting petition to
decide the issue of whether patent ownership was
transferred by operation of law, where the district
court ruled that no written assignment was needed,
for standing)

- Claim construction orders, i.e., where a district


court has decided a claim construction issue and
one party asserts error, are not subject to
interlocutory review (Regents of U. Cal. (Order),
2/14/07)

- Appeal of interlocutory order allowed in


unusual circumstance where consideration
of claim construction issue(s) in conjunction
with already-pending appeals regarding PI
motion would be an efficient use of judicial
resources and would facilitate resolution of
all claim construction disputes, where the
issues are intertwined and where the same
district court has revisited the claim
construction issues already before the court
in the other appeals (Regents of U. Cal.,
2/28/08; Regents of U. Cal. (Order),
2/14/07)

- Denial of a motion to dismiss for lack of subject


matter jurisdiction is generally not subject to
interlocutory review (Intel, 7/14/06 (motion to
dismiss for lack of DJ jurisdiction))

- Interlocutory rulings (e.g., SJ) merge with final


judgment reviewable on appeal (Crown
Packaging, 3/17/09; Invitrogen, 11/18/05)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Standing

Generally

- Standing constitutional prerequisite for the


CAFCs and district courts jurisdiction for a
justiciable Article III case or controversy
Vermont Agency (S.C.) (Wiav Solutions, 12/22/10;
Abraxis Bioscience, 11/9/10; Stauffer, 8/31/10
(any person has standing to sue for false marking
under Section 292 on behalf of the government);
Stanford U., 9/30/09 (district court lacked
jurisdiction to address validity of patents)
[affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court, on 6/6/11,
in Stanford U. v. Roche]; Asymmetrx, 9/18/09;
Larson, 6/5/09 (no constitutional standing to sue
for correction of inventorship under Section 256,
where no ownership or other financial interest in
patents); Samsung Electronics, 4/29/08; Caraco,
4/1/08 (DJ action by Paragraph IV ANDA filer);
Morrow, 9/19/07 (bankruptcy and trust law); BIO,
8/1/07; Pods, 4/27/07; Teva, 3/30/07; Fuji Photo
Film, 1/11/07 (ITC); Propat Intl, 1/4/07; Figueroa,
10/11/06; Sicom Systems, 10/18/05; Schreiber
Foods, 3/22/05; Evident, 2/22/05; Fieldturf, 2/4/04;
Media Technologies, 7/11/03); See also Dalton,
6/13/11 (nonprecedential the case and
controversy restrictions do not apply to matters
before administrative agencies instead, for an
agency such as the PTO, standing is conferred by
statute)

- Article III, 2 of the Constitution confines


federal courts to deciding only cases or
controversies (see Constitutional
standing) - standing to sue or defend is an
aspect of the case-or-controversy
requirement of Article III (Astrazeneca,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
2/9/12; Wiav Solutions, 12/22/10; Stauffer,
8/31/10; Samsung Electronics, 4/29/08)

- Appellate review - Article III standing


requirement must be met by persons
seeking appellate review, just as it
must be met by persons appearing in
courts of first instance (Samsung
Electronics, 4/29/08 (standing to bring
the appeal was assumed since the
CAFCs Article III jurisdiction could
be determined based on mootness))

- Congress by legislation may expand


standing to the full extent permitted by
Article III, thus permitting litigation by one
who otherwise would be barred; however,
Congress cannot expand standing beyond
the Article III jurisdiction of federal courts
(Teva, 3/30/07)

- Party invoking federal jurisdiction bears the


burden of establishing the elements required
for Article III standing (i.e., injury-in-fact,
causation, and redressability) Lujan (S.C.)
(MHL Tek, 8/10/11; Wiav Solutions,
12/22/10; Stauffer, 8/31/10 (plaintiff in qui
tam suit for false marking under Section 292
satisfied the Lujan (S.C.) requirements for
standing with respect to the governments
interest in enforcing its laws when
disobeyed); Larson, 6/5/09 (addressing
standing to sue to correct inventorship under
Section 256, distinguishing Chou where the
plaintiff, although not having an ownership
interest in the patents, still established the
elements for standing based on a concrete
financial interest in the patents); Caraco,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
4/1/08 (contains an excellent analysis of the
elements of standing in the context of a
Hatch-Waxman case, referring to the
irreducible constitutional minimum of
standing); Teva, 3/30/07; Fuji Photo Film,
1/11/07 (ITC))

- Parties asserting federal jurisdiction


carry the burden of establishing their
standing under Article III (Stauffer,
8/31/10; Larson, 6/5/09 (plaintiff
failed to establish standing to correct
inventorship under Section 256,
where the plaintiff had no ownership
interest after assigning the patents,
and otherwise had no concrete
financial interest, or claimed no
purely reputational interest, in
correcting inventorship, under Chou,
Jim Arnold); Morrow, 9/19/07; Teva,
3/30/07; Voda, 2/1/07)

- Party bringing the action has the burden of


establishing standing to sue (MHL Tek,
8/10/11; Spine Solutions, 9/9/10; SiRF
Technology, 4/12/10 (alleged co-owner had
the burden of proving a prior assignment to
it by one of the co-inventors); Tyco,
12/7/09; Larson, 6/5/09; Teva, 3/30/07;
Sicom Systems, 10/18/05)

- Standing doctrine is intended to


require that the plaintiff is a proper
person to bring the suit; it does not
require that the plaintiff properly
allege all of the elements of his claim
standing requires a claim to an

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
injury of a legally cognizable right
(Stauffer, 8/31/10)

- Organizations may sue to redress its


members injuries, even without a
showing of injury to the association
itself United Food (S.C.) (BIO,
8/1/07)

- Plaintiff suing for patent infringement


must demonstrate that it held
enforceable title at the inception of
the lawsuit Paradise Creations
(Abraxis Bioscience, 11/9/10; Tyco,
12/7/09 (affirming the district courts
dismissal without prejudice for lack of
standing, where proof of ownership of
the asserted patents depended on the
correct interpretation of a contract and
information missing from the
contract; see also J. Newman,
dissenting the majority adopted a
new theory for excluding the patents
in suit from transfer to the plaintiff
under the contract))

- Standing is threshold jurisdictional issue in


any federal action must be present at time
the suit is brought, and can be raised at any
time (Abraxis Bioscience, 11/9/10; Stanford
U., 9/30/09 (questions of standing can be
raised at any time and are not foreclosed by,
or subject to, statutes of limitation -
Pandrol; dismissing case where the
defendant asserted ownership interest in
patent as a bar to the plaintiffs standing)
[affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court, on
6/6/11, in Stanford U. v. Roche]; Larson,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
6/5/09; Aspex Eyewear, 1/10/06; Sicom
Systems, 10/18/05; Fieldturf, 2/4/04)

- Because Article III standing is


jurisdictional, the CAFC must
consider the issue sua sponte even if
not raised by the parties, i.e., issue not
waived, and even though the district
court passed over it without comment
(Spine Solutions, 9/9/10 (standing is
jurisdictional and not subject to
waiver Pandrol); King, 8/2/10;
Asymmetrx, 9/18/09 (CAFC vacated
judgment on the merits after ruling
sua sponte that an exclusive licensee
lacked standing to sue without joining
the patent owner); Larson, 6/5/09
(CAFC asked for supplemental
briefing on whether the district court
had federal question jurisdiction
under Section 1338(a)); Fuji Photo
Film, 1/11/07 (ITC))

- General rule, but not absolute the


plaintiff must have initial standing
and continue to have a personal stake
in the outcome of the suit (Schreiber
Foods, 3/22/05)

- No retroactive standing (Abraxis


Bioscience, 11/9/10 (futile attempt to
correct critical error in title by nunc
pro tunc assignment; see also J.
Newman, dissenting retroactive
effect of agreement was proper under
New York state law) [petition for
rehearing en banc was denied on
3/14/11; J. Gajarsa, with whom J.

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Linn and J. Dyk joined, concurred
in the denial of the petition,
disagreeing with the dissent that the
majority opinion created a federal
common law that displaced state
law in the area of patent
assignments . . . the majority
followed CAFC law in determining
that the plaintiff had no standing
under Article III to sue because it
did not own the patents at the time
of filing the suit . . . Abraxis did not
possess a written assignment of the
patents, as required under Section
261, from the owner thereof at the
time suit was filed . . . the dissents
position would apply state law to
effectively preempt federal law . . .
Notwithstanding New York law, it
is not possible to transfer an
interest in a patent unless one owns
the patents at the time of the
transfer.; J. OMalley, with whom
J. Newman joined, dissented from
the denial of the petition, opining
that the panel majoritys creation of
federal common law to govern
assignments of existing patents
conflicts not only with CAFC law,
but also Supreme Court law
restricting judicial preemption of
state law -- unless there exists a
significant conflict between state
law and some federal policy or
interest; DDB Techs. (holding that
federal law applied to interpreting
assignment agreements to future
inventions for purposes of deciding

92
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
standing) was not intended to create
a broad exception to encompass
assignments of existing (as opposed
to future) patents]; Walter Kidde,
3/2/07)

- Nunc pro tunc assignment


executed after filing of a
lawsuit cannot retroactively
cure standing that was deficient
at the time of filing - Enzo
(Abraxis Bioscience, 11/9/10
(n.4))

- Narrow exception a written


assignment expressly granting a
party the right to sue for past
infringement occurring before it
acquired legal title Moore
(S.C.) (Abraxis Bioscience,
11/9/10)

- Standing must be decided before


voluntary dismissal motion (Walter
Kidde, 3/2/07)

- Where standing and jurisdiction of a


trial court are lacking, an appellate
court may vacate a decision that was
rendered on the merits or, in rare
instances, order joinder of a necessary
party at the appellate level (MHL Tek,
8/10/11 (vacating SJ of
noninfringement where no standing to
sue); Stanford U., 9/30/09 (vacating
judgment of invalidity for
obviousness where no standing)
[affirmed by the U.S. Supreme

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Court, on 6/6/11, in Stanford U. v.
Roche]; Asymmetrx, 9/18/09
(vacating judgment where neither
party argued on appeal that the patent
owner should be joined at the
appellate stage))

- Standing before an administrative agency,


e.g., PTO, is conferred by statute (Dalton,
6/13/11 (nonprecedential standing to
oppose trademark registration conferred by
Section 13 of the Lanham Act)

Constitutional vs. prudential standing

- Constitutional (Art. III) vs. prudential standing;


constitutional, need an injury in fact caused by the
defendant vs. prudential standing relates to
whether policy concerns are met (Wiav Solutions,
12/22/10; Morrow, 9/19/07; Figueroa, 10/11/06;
Evident, 2/22/05)

- Legal injury for constitutional standing the


touchstone of constitutional standing in a
patent infringement suit is whether a party
can establish that it has an exclusionary right
in a patent that, if violated by another, would
cause the party holding the exclusionary
right to suffer legal injury (Wiav Solutions,
12/22/10)

Constitutional standing

- Constitutional standing (Art. III requires


an actual, ongoing case or controversy, in
the absence of which, a court lacks

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
jurisdiction) (Astrazeneca, 2/9/12 (alleged
future FDA labeling amendments were
speculative and unripe for adjudication);
Wiav Solutions, 12/22/10; Stauffer, 8/31/10;
Samsung Electronics, 4/29/08 (patentees
offer to pay in full the accused infringers
attorney fees mooted the district courts case
and jurisdiction over the accused infringers
request for attorney fees; CAFC thus
vacated the district courts impermissible
advisory opinion as having been issued
without jurisdiction)) to establish
standing, a plaintiff must show that he
suffered an injury-in-fact that is both fairly
traceable to the challenged conduct of the
defendant and likely redressable by a
favorable judicial decision Lujan (S.C.)
(MHL Tek, 8/10/11; Wiav Solutions,
12/22/10; Stauffer, 8/31/10; Larson, 6/5/09;
Caraco, 4/1/08 (Paragraph IV ANDA filer
had standing to bring DJ action, despite
covenant not to sue); Morrow, 9/19/07; BIO,
8/1/07; Teva, 3/30/07; Fuji Photo Film,
1/11/07 (ITC); Figueroa, 10/11/06)

- Injury must be 1) concrete and


particularized, and 2) actual or
imminent, not conjectural or
hypothetical; injury need not have
been already manifested Lujan,
Babbitt (S.C.) (Stauffer, 8/31/10;
Caraco, 4/1/08; BIO, 8/1/07
(enjoining enforcement of statute));
See also August Tech., 11/18/13
(nonprecedential)

- Right to exclude is the legal


interest created by the patent

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
statutes; constitutional injury in
fact occurs when a party
performs at least one prohibited
action with respect to the
patented invention that violates
these exclusionary rights; the
party holding the exclusionary
rights to the patent (e.g., the
patent owner) suffers legal
injury in fact under the statute
(MHL Tek, 8/10/11; Wiav
Solutions, 12/22/10 (exclusive
licensee had standing to sue
where had exclusivity with
respect to the defendants);
Morrow, 9/19/07 (liquidation
plan separated right to sue for
infringement from right to
exclude trustee thus lacked
standing to sue even as a co-
plaintiff))

- Ripeness of claim for the


district courts jurisdiction
(Astrazeneca, 2/9/12 (district
court properly dismissed claim
for infringement under Section
271(e)(2) of method of use
patents, where alleged future
labeling amendments to be
required by the FDA for the
defendant generics to add
indications covered by the
patents were speculative and
unripe for adjudication citing
Texas v. U.S. (S.C.) (A claim
is not ripe for adjudication if it
rests on contingent future

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
events that may not occur as
anticipated, or indeed may not
occur at all.)))

- Only when a party (who lacks


all substantial rights) holds the
exclusionary rights to the patent
may the party join the legal title
owner in a suit to enforce
patent rights (Morrow, 9/19/07)

- Right to sue clause does not


confer standing; need
proprietary interest in the
patent, exclusionary rights to
suffer legal injury (Morrow,
9/19/07)

- Three general categories of plaintiffs


encountered when analyzing the
constitutional standing issue in patent
infringement cases: 1) those that can
sue in their own name alone (i.e.,
plaintiffs that hold all legal rights to
the patent as the patentee or assignee
(when patentee transfers to the
assignee all substantial rights to the
patent, becomes the effective
patentee) of all patent rights the
entire bundle of sticks); 2) those that
can sue as long as the patent owner is
joined in the suit (e.g., exclusive
licensee); and 3) those that cannot
even participate as a party to an
infringement suit (e.g., nonexclusive
licensee, lacks injury in fact and thus
constitutional standing) (Morrow,
9/19/07 (trustee in bankruptcy fell

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
into third category, lacked
exclusionary rights, injury in fact and
thus standing; See also dissent, J.
Prost, concluding that the trustee fell
into the second category, and had
sufficient rights to support co-plaintiff
standing); See also Aspex Eyewear,
8/1/08 (nonprecedential SJ of no
standing by exclusive licensee was
properly denied where evidence of
oral or implied exclusive license;
addressing the writing requirements
for exclusive licenses 35 USC
261); See also discussion below

- Only a patent owner or an


exclusive licensee can have
constitutional standing to bring
an infringement suit; a non-
exclusive licensee does not
(Spine Solutions, 9/9/10 (citing
Mars); Mars, 6/2/08 (patent
owners wholly owned
subsidiary was a non-exclusive
licensee and lacked standing))

Prudential standing joining (co)owner

- Prudential standing

- Patent owner should be joined in an


infringement suit brought by an
exclusive licensee (or more generally,
one who holds the exclusionary rights
to a patent but lacks all substantial
rights) avoids potential for multiple
litigations and multiple liabilities and

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
recoveries against the same infringer;
joinder also ensures that the
patentees rights are protected in a
suit brought by the licensee (A123
Systems, 11/10/10 (accused infringer
must join both the exclusive licensee
and the patentee in a DJ action
because the patentee is a necessary
party); Mann Foundation, 5/14/10
(both the patent owner and exclusive
licensee generally must be joined as
parties to the litigation brought by
either of them alone Aspex
Eyewear); Asymmetrx, 9/18/09
(exclusive licensee lacked all
substantial rights for standing without
the patent owner where the patent
owner retained substantial rights
under the patents (when the retained
rights were considered as a whole));
Intl Gamco, 10/15/07; Schwarz
Pharma, 10/12/07; IPVenture,
9/28/07; Morrow, 9/19/07; Propat
Intl, 1/4/07; Evident, 2/22/05)

- Joining the legal title holder


only satisfies prudential
standing requirements, but does
not cure constitutional standing
deficiencies (Morrow, 9/19/07)

- Patent owner is a necessary


party under FRCP 19, except
when the patentee is the
infringer or prudential concerns
are not at play in case
(Asymmetrx, 9/18/09
(addressing policy reasons for

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
joining the patent owner under
Rule 19); Morrow, 9/19/07;
Breckenridge Pharmaceutical,
4/7/06); See also In re KGK
Synergize, 10/9/09 (Order)
(nonprecedential denying
petition for writ of mandamus
regarding whether the district
court properly denied a motion
to dismiss a DJ action where
the patent co-owner United
States was not joined as a co-
defendant because of sovereign
immunity))

- Patent owner refuses or is


unable to join an exclusive
licensee as co-plaintiff the
licensee may make the patent
owner a party defendant by
process (or an involuntary
plaintiff); however, the patent
owner must first be given the
opportunity to join the
infringement action
(Asymmetrx, 9/18/09)

- All (legal) co-owners of a patent


normally must join as plaintiffs to
establish standing Crown Die &
Tool (S.C.) (Enovsys, 8/3/10 (ex-wife
of co-inventor ruled not a co-owner of
patents, pursuant to California divorce
decree); SiRF Technology, 4/12/10
(co-owner acting alone lacks standing
DDB Techs. the rule also applies
to ITC investigations); Stanford U.,
9/30/09 (Stanford lacked standing to

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
sue where the defendant Roche was
determined to be a co-owner of the
patents based on an earlier assignment
of rights from one of the co-inventors)
[affirmed by the U.S. Supreme
Court, on 6/6/11, in Stanford U. v.
Roche]; U. of Pittsburgh, 6/9/09
(improper to dismiss with prejudice
for failing to timely join a necessary
party under FRCP 19(b), including
where it was a complex question . . .
present[ing] novel facts whether the
alleged co-owner was a necessary
party); Nartron, 3/5/09 (reversing SJ
of dismissal based on alleged co-
inventor not being joined as a
plaintiff); Lucent Techs., 9/25/08;
DDB Technologies, 2/13/08; Digeo,
11/1/07 (issue of defective title before
district court); IPVenture, 9/28/07;
Israel Bio-Engineering Project,
1/29/07; Israel Bio-Engineering
Project, 3/15/05); See also Gellman,
11/30/11 (nonprecedential lack of
standing without other co-owner);
Tavory, 10/27/08 (nonprecedential
also must be a patent co-owner to be
entitled to a portion of a damages
award on the patent)

Right to sue for infringement, and seek damages 35


USC 281, 100(d)

- Party suing for patent infringement has the burden


to show necessary ownership rights to support
standing to sue (Abbott, 1/13/12); See also Nolen,
2/1/12 (Order) (nonprecedential the CAFC lack

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
jurisdiction where the plaintiffs failed to make any
plausible allegations of ownership of the patents at
issue that did not first require judicial intervention)

- Patent statutes give rise to the right to sue others


for patent infringement, as well as define the
nature and source of the infringement claim and
determine the party that is entitled to judicial relief
[a] patentee shall have remedy by civil action
for infringement of his patent 35 USC 281;
patentee also includes successors in (legal) title
to the patentee, or exclusive licensee 35 USC
100(d) (effective patentee) (Abbott, 1/13/12
(affirming no standing to sue where the inventor
did not assign the invention in a consulting
agreement to the plaintiffs predecessor, despite
incorporation of earlier employment agreement;
see also J. Bryson, dissenting consulting
agreement may have incorporated assignment
covenant from the earlier agreement, and therefore
would have remanded for jurisdictional discovery
and consideration of extrinsic evidence of the
parties intent to incorporate the assignment
provision from the earlier agreement into the later
consulting agreement); Wiav Solutions, 12/22/10
(exclusive licensee had standing to sue where held
exclusionary rights in field of use relative to the
defendants); Tri-Star Electronics, 9/9/10 (affirming
the denial of motion to dismiss for lack of standing
where the mutual intent of the parties to the
assignment was to assign the patent rights to the
inventors employer, who was the successor of the
non-existent assignee); Enovsys, 8/3/10;
Asymmetrx, 9/18/09; Morrow, 9/19/07; Mymail,
2/20/07; Israel Bio-Engineering Project, 1/29/07;
Propat Intl, 1/4/07; Bicon, 3/20/06; Aspex
Eyewear, 1/10/06; Sicom Systems, 10/18/05;
Fieldturf, 2/4/04)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Patent owner may assign or transfer
ownership interests in the patent as personal
property 35 USC 261 (Abbott, 1/13/12;
Akazawa, 3/31/08 (remanded to determine
whether a written assignment was needed
under Japanese intestacy law for transfer of
ownership in patent, and for standing to
sue); Intl Gamco, 10/15/07; Israel Bio-
Engineering Project, 1/29/07); See also Dow
Chemical, 1/24/12 (nonprecedential
patentee had standing to sue based on
interpretation of contract that did not
transfer the asserted patents to the patentees
holding company; see also J. Reyna,
dissenting patentee lacked standing under
the contract after transferring ownership in
the asserted patents)

- Patentee or his assignee may grant


and convey to another: 1) the whole
patent, 2) an undivided part or share
of that exclusive right, or 3) the
exclusive right under the patent within
and throughout a specified part of the
U.S.; a transfer of less does not
convey title and the right to sue, but
merely a license Pope (S.C.); #1 and
#3, assignee may sue in its name
alone; vs. #2, assignee may sue
jointly with the assignor
Waterman (S.C.) (MHL Tek, 8/10/11
(later assignment of patent rights was
not part of carve out provision of
earlier assignment agreement); A123
Systems, 11/10/10 (exclusive field of
use licensee was required to join
patent owner); Asymmetrx, 9/18/09

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(discussing Waterman (S.C.)); Lucent
Techs., 9/25/08 (lack of standing to
sue in absence of patent co-owner);
Intl Gamco, 10/15/07; Morrow,
9/19/07 (n.8); Israel Bio-Engineering
Project, 1/29/07)

- Patent owner cannot split up its


ownership rights in a patent and
assign different claims to
different parties Pope (S.C.),
but an inventor of one or more
claims of the patent is an owner
of all claims of the patent
Israel Bio-Engineering (Lucent
Techs., 9/25/08 (to avoid
standing problem, advising the
filing of separate applications
on the inventions of different
inventors/owners, rather than
including all inventions in a
single application))

- One co-owner, possessing an


undivided part of the entire patent,
must join all other co-owners to
establish standing (SiRF Technology,
4/12/10; Stanford U., 9/30/09
[affirmed by the U.S. Supreme
Court, on 6/6/11, in Stanford U. v.
Roche]; U. of Pittsburgh, 6/9/09;
Nartron, 3/5/09 (reversing dismissal
based on a failure to join an alleged
co-inventor as a plaintiff); Lucent
Techs., 9/25/08 (no standing without
patent co-owner who invented subject
matter of certain claims); DDB
Technologies, 2/13/08; IPVenture,

104
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
9/28/07); with certain exceptions, one
co-owner has the right to limit the
other co-owners ability to sue
infringers by refusing to join
voluntarily in the infringement suit
Ethicon, Schering v. Roussel-UCLAF;
absent the voluntary joinder of all co-
owners of a patent, a co-owner acting
alone will lack standing (DDB
Technologies, 2/13/08 (n.2: FRCP 19
does not permit the involuntary
joinder of patent co-owner in an
infringement suit brought by another
co-owner; all co-owners must
ordinarily consent to join as plaintiffs
in an infringement suit Ethicon;
citing two exceptions: 1) an exclusive
licensee may join the patent owner as
an involuntary plaintiff in an
infringement suit, and 2) a co-owner
who, by agreement, waives his right
to refuse to join suit, may be forced to
join an infringement suit; see also J.
Newman, dissenting Rule 19
requires that a plaintiff have the
opportunity to effect any necessary
joinder when the issue is raised) ;
Israel Bio-Engineering Project,
1/29/07); See also Gellman, 11/30/11
(nonprecedential co-owner and co-
inventor failed to obtain legal title (as
opposed to equitable title) from other
co-owner and co-inventor in alleged
employment contract)

- Exclusive licensee has standing to sue


a party has the right to sue for patent
infringement if the party has a legally

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
protected interest in the patent (i.e.,
an exclusionary right) created by the
Patent Act, so that it can be said to
suffer legal injury from the act of
infringement Propat Intl (Wiav
Solutions, 12/22/10); See Exclusive
licensee

- Transfer by operation of law - transfer of


patent ownership by other than a written
assignment under 261 (requiring that all
assignments of patent interest be in writing)
there is nothing that limits assignment as
the only means for transferring patent
ownership, since the case law illustrates that
patent ownership may be changed by
operation of law Stickle (applying Texas
law) (Sky Technologies, 8/20/09 (district
court correctly relied on Akazawa to
determine that patent ownership was
properly transferred without a writing by
operation of state foreclosure law; also
rejecting argument that Section 154 restricts
patent ownership to only three classes of
individuals, and ruling that Section 154 does
not specifically address transfers of patent
ownership; also ruling that holding was
supported by the policy justifications for
permitting transfers of patent ownership by
operation of law without a writing);
Akazawa, 3/31/08 (citing 154(a)(1) that
[e]very patent shall contain a short title of
the invention and a grant to the patentee, his
heirs or assigns, of the right to exclude
others from making, using, offering for sale,
or selling the invention throughout the
United States . . . .)); See also Gellman,
11/30/11 (nonprecedential stating general

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
rule with respect to an alleged contract to
transfer title to inventions in an unsigned
consulting agreement - citing Sky Techs.);
Sky Technologies, 9/10/08 (nonprecedential
granting permission to (interlocutory)
appeal issue certified by the district court of
whether a written assignment was needed
for standing, citing Akazawa)

Party needs legal title or all substantial rights

- Party must have sufficient ownership


interest in the patent to be entitled to sue for
infringement; infringement suit ordinarily is
brought by the party holding legal title in the
patent at the time of the infringement Rite-
Hite, Crown Die & Tool (S.C.) (Abbott,
1/13/12 (no standing where the plaintiff did
not own the patent based on earlier contract
between the inventor and the plaintiffs
predecessor); MHL Tek, 8/10/11 (plaintiff
lacked standing to sue where the patents in
suit claimed the inventions and
discoveries disclosed in a parent
application which was earlier assigned in
writing to a different entity); A123 Systems,
11/10/10 (patent owner was necessary and
indispensible party in suit brought by
exclusive field of use licensee); Spine
Solutions, 9/9/10; Mann Foundation,
5/14/10 (patent owner, despite there being
an exclusive licensee, had standing to sue
where retained substantial rights in the
patent); Asymmetrx, 9/18/09; Sky
Technologies, 8/20/09; Mars, 6/2/08;
Akazawa, 3/31/08 (ownership of patent for
standing by heirs of deceased patentee

107
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
determined based on Japanese intestacy
law); IPVenture, 9/28/07; Morrow, 9/19/07;
Mitutoyo, 9/5/07; Walter Kidde, 3/2/07;
Mymail, 2/20/07); if legal title not
transferred, then must convey all
substantial rights in the patent (vs. the
transferor retaining ownership rights in the
patent), and the transferee is treated as the
patentee; if neither of the above, need a
legally protected interest in the patent
created by the Patent Act, so that it can be
said to suffer legal injury from an act of
infringement (e.g., an exclusive licensee)
(Propat Intl, 1/4/07); See also Gellman,
11/30/11 (nonprecedential plaintiff must
prove sole legal ownership for standing - an
equitable claim to title alone will not suffice
- Arachnid)

- All substantial rights inquiry is a


proxy for the statutory requirement
that a party bringing an infringement
suit have the interests of a patentee
(i.e., exclusionary rights, rights to
assign and enforce patent)
(Asymmetrx, 9/18/09; Morrow,
9/19/07)

- Party holding all rights or all


substantial rights alone has
standing to sue for infringement
(Delano Farms, 8/24/11
(licensor was a necessary
defendant in DJ action where
not all substantial rights were
transferred to licensee); Mann
Foundation, 5/14/10;
Asymmetrx, 9/18/09 (exclusive

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
licensee did not have all
substantial rights and thus
could not sue without the patent
owner, where the patent owner
retained substantial rights in the
patents); Sky Technologies,
8/20/09; Morrow, 9/19/07)

- Substance of what was granted


(reflecting the parties intent),
not the form, which determines
patent rights Speedplay; see
also below (Asymmetrx,
9/18/09; Sky Technologies,
8/20/09 (patent title was
transferred by operation of state
foreclosure law without a
writing, so that the titleholders
subsequent transfer of title to
the appellee by assignment was
valid))

- Unilateral representation of
having all substantial rights
does not control (A123
Systems, 11/10/10 (unilateral
representation by exclusive
field of use licensee could not
alter the assignees own rights
in the patents))

- Plaintiff must demonstrate legal title


to the patent (determined by state law)
at the inception of the lawsuit to be
entitled to sue for infringement
(Abraxis Bioscience, 11/9/10
[petition for rehearing en banc was
denied on 3/14/11 see discussion

109
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
above]; Sky Technologies, 8/20/09;
Akazawa, 3/31/08 (addressing
whether the heirs of deceased patentee
held title to the patent under Japanese
law (analogous to a determination
based on state law) for standing);
Walter Kidde, 3/2/07; Mymail,
2/20/07 (Texas law)); See also
Gellman, 11/30/11 (nonprecedential
hired to invent doctrine is equitable
and creates only an obligation for an
employee to assign to an employer)

- Common corporate structure


does not overcome the
requirement that even between
a parent and a subsidiary, an
appropriate written assignment
is necessary to transfer legal
title from one to the other
(Abraxis Bioscience, 11/9/10)

- Fraud asserted with respect to chain


of title fraud relating to patent
ownership cannot be raised as defense
in federal court (unlike later-
discovered fraud relating to patent
procurement (i.e., unenforceability)
can always be raised as a defense),
because state law, not federal law,
addresses property ownership disputes
(Mymail, 2/20/07)

- When restriction on right to dispose


of assets, not all substantial rights
transferred Sicom Systems
(Asymmetrx, 9/18/09; Propat Intl,
1/4/07)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Only the entity or entities that own or
control all substantial rights in a patent
can enforce rights controlled by the patent,
lest an accused infringer be subjected to
multiple suits and duplicate liability for a
single act of infringement; thus all entities
with an independent right to enforce the
patent are indispensable or necessary parties
to an infringement suit (Delano Farms,
8/24/11 (licensor USDA was a necessary
defendant in DJ action, where retained the
right to enforce the patents and approve
sublicenses, and reserved for itself a royalty-
free license); A123 Systems, 11/10/10
(patent owner was necessary and
indispensible party in DJ suit brought
against an exclusive field of use licensee);
Asymmetrx, 9/18/09; Intl Gamco, 10/15/07;
IPVenture, 9/28/07)

Agreements assignments, licenses 35 USC 261

Generally

- Agreements assignment vs. license? (A123


Systems, 11/10/10 (citing cases); Mann
Foundation, 5/14/10 (comparing an exclusive
license (where both the patent owner and the
licensee have standing to sue) and a virtual
assignment (where only the licensee has standing
to sue alone); Asymmetrx, 9/18/09; Aspex
Eyewear, 1/10/06; Sicom Systems, 10/18/05;
Fieldturf, 2/4/04); See also OWNERSHIP
Assignments and Licenses

- Construction of patent assignments and


license agreements is a matter of state

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
contract law (Preston, 7/10/12 (applying
Wyoming law (after certifying state law
question to the Wyoming Supreme Court) to
assignment provision in employment
agreement in determining that former
employer owned patents); Abraxis
Bioscience, 11/9/10 (applying CAFC law to
question of whether contractual language
effected a present assignment of patent
rights, or an agreement to assign rights in
the future; see also J. Newman, dissenting
patent conveyances are sales contracts
interpreted under state contract law, which
considers the intent of the parties) [petition
for rehearing en banc was denied on
3/14/11 see discussion above]; Tri-Star
Electronics, 9/9/10 (applying Ohio statutory
and common law, which was in accord with
CAFC law, to interpret patent assignment,
giving effect to the intent of the parties);
Mann Foundation, 5/14/10 (license
agreement interpreted under California law);
SiRF Technology, 4/12/10 (applying
California law, in concluding that the
patented invention was not related to or
useful in the business of the Employer
within the meaning of an employee
assignment agreement); Mars, 6/2/08
(applying Delaware law)); See also
OWNERSHIP Assignments and
Licenses

- Ownership depends on the substance of


what was granted through assignment, and
not the characterization of those rights as an
exclusive license or assignment; in
construing the substance of the assignment,
a court must carefully consider the intent of

112
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
the parties from the language of the grant
(MHL Tek, 8/10/11 (lack of standing based
on interpretation of earlier assignment
agreement); A123 Systems, 11/10/10 (need
to examine the actual transfer of rights in the
patent); Mann Foundation, 5/14/10;
Asymmetrx, 9/18/09 (exclusive license was
not effectively an assignment for the
licensee to sue without the patent owner,
where the patent owner retained substantial
rights under the patents); Mars, 6/2/08
(applying Delaware law); Intl Gamco,
10/15/07; IPVenture, 9/28/07 (only
agreement to assign, thus no assignment);
Morrow, 9/19/07 (n.7); Israel Bio-
Engineering Project, 1/29/07)

- Assignment must be in writing, while


license can be implied (Aspex
Eyewear, 1/10/06); See also Aspex
Eyewear, 8/1/08 (nonprecedential
remanding issue of whether standing
based on oral or implied exclusive
license; 35 USC 261)

- (Automatic) assignment vs.


agreement to assign i.e., does
hereby grant vs. agree to assign
(Preston, 7/10/12 (construing
assignment provision in employment
agreement as an automatic assignment
of future inventions, without the need
for additional acts which included
formal execution of documents
citing DDB Techs.); Abbott, 1/13/12
(no automatic assignment in
consulting agreement based on
incorporation of earlier employment

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
agreement); Abraxis Bioscience,
11/9/10 (comparing the two types of
agreements, where the agreement was
an agreement to assign in the future,
and thus a further assignment of
patents was needed; see also J.
Newman, dissenting district court
properly applied state contract law to
retroactive assignment, and agree to
assign cases are distinguishable)
[petition for rehearing en banc was
denied on 3/14/11 see discussion
above]; SiRF Technology, 4/12/10
(employee-assignment agreement was
an automatic assignment, expressly
granting rights with no further action
needed on the part of the employee);
Imation, 11/3/09 (contract
interpretation, not standing, at issue;
applying assignment-related cases to
construe a license agreements grant
language agrees to grant and does
hereby grant as a present license
grant that included the parties future
subsidiaries, citing DDB Techs.);
Stanford U., 9/30/09 (distinguishing
the language of two assignment
agreements, the first an employment
agreement with Stanford under which
the inventor agreed to assign (which
reflected a mere promise to assign
rights in the future) and the other that
recited that the inventor will assign
and do hereby assign to Cetus
(which effected a present assignment
of the inventors future inventions to
Cetus, which legal title vested before
the inventor assigned to Stanford))

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
[affirmed by the U.S. Supreme
Court, on 6/6/11, in Stanford U. v.
Roche; Justice Breyer, with whom
Justice Ginsburg joined, dissented,
while Justice Sotomayor shared
Justice Breyers concern about the
CAFCs FilmTec rule above that
the rule undercuts the objectives
of the Bayh-Dole Act and that it
remains a technical drafting trap
for the unwary ]; Mars, 6/2/08 (in
one agreement, a transfer of the
entire interest of a patentee meant a
full assignment of the patent, i.e.,
transfer of title, whereas in another
agreement, an acknowledgement by
the parties of one partys rights failed
to assign title to the patent, but instead
assigned only the right to sue for past
infringement, citing Morrow, 9/19/07
(holding that transfer of the right to
sue for past infringement does not
convey title or standing in the
infringement action)); DDB
Technologies, 2/13/08 (applying
CAFC law, employment agreement
stating that employee agrees to and
does hereby grant and assign was an
automatic assignment, requiring no
further act on the part of the assignee,
rather than merely a promise to
assign, thus transferring title by
operation of law; equitable vs. legal
rights in the invention; assignor thus
precluded from asserting equitable
defenses, such as waiver and various
estoppels; see also J. Newman,
dissenting employment agreement,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
patent ownership issues are decided
under state law, and equitable
defenses are relevant to ownership
issues); See Abraxis Bioscience,
11/9/10 - petition for rehearing en
banc was denied on 3/14/11 J.
OMalley, with whom J. Newman
joined, dissented from the denial of
the petition, discussing the federal
law exception applied in DDB to
interpreting assignment agreements
to future (as opposed to existing)
patents, and noting (in n.3) that
[m]any have questioned the
wisdom of DDB Technologies,
including whether the mere fact
that a particular question of
contract interpretation is intimately
bound up with the question of
standing is sufficient to justify
judicial preemption of state law;
IPVenture, 9/28/07 (employment
agreement)); See also Gellman,
11/30/11 (nonprecedential co-owner
lacked standing to sue without other
co-owner where language in unsigned
consulting agreement was merely an
obligation to assign in the future and
thus did not transfer legal title)

- Acknowledgement of one
partys rights in the patent does
not transfer title to the patent
(Mars, 6/2/08)

- Agreement to assign reflects a


mere promise to assign rights in
the future, not an immediate

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
transfer of expectant interests
IpVenture (Stanford U.,
9/30/09) [affirmed by the U.S.
Supreme Court, on 6/6/11, in
Stanford U. v. Roche]

- Agreement to assign patent,


must be implemented by a
written instrument (IPVenture,
9/28/07); See also Gellman,
11/30/11 (nonprecedential)

- Consent judgment lacked assignment


of right to enforce (Thatcher, 2/10/05)

- Post-agreement statements regarding


ownership are relevant (DDB
Technologies, 2/13/08 (assignment
provision in employment agreement
was ambiguous in part; remanded for
limited discovery on ownership,
jurisdictional (standing) issues);
IPVenture, 9/28/07 (employment
agreement))

- Termination provision when


transferees rights valid for only
limited period of time - all
substantial rights to patent are not
transferred and transferee is not owner
of patent, but instead is exclusive
licensee without all substantial rights
(Aspex Eyewear, 1/10/06)

Exclusive licensee

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Exclusive licensee a licensee is an
exclusive licensee of a patent (and has
standing to sue) if it holds any of the
exclusionary rights that accompany a patent
thus, depending on the scope of its
exclusionary rights, an exclusive licensee
may have standing to sue some parties and
not others, e.g., not a party who holds a
preexisting license to the patent, or who has
the ability to obtain such a license from
another party with the right to grant it (Wiav
Solutions, 12/22/10 (exclusive licensee had
standing to sue the defendants who did not
possess, and were incapable of obtaining, a
license to the exclusive licensees field of
exclusivity -- even though third parties had
the right to license the patent))

- Standard for exclusive licensee


standing whether the plaintiff
exclusive licensee has shown that it
has the right under the patents to
exclude the defendants from engaging
in the alleged infringing activity and
therefore is injured by the defendants
conduct (Wiav Solutions, 12/22/10)

- Exclusive licensee must usually bring suit


with patent owner, to satisfy prudential
standing concerns (Wiav Solutions,
12/22/10 (n.1: the plaintiff exclusive
licensee addressed any prudential standing
concerns by adding the patent owner to the
suit as a defendant patent owner); A123
Systems, 11/10/10; Mann Foundation,
5/14/10; Asymmetrx, 9/18/09; Intl Gamco,
10/15/07; Morrow, 9/19/07; Propat Intl,
1/4/07); otherwise to sue in its own name,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
without joining the patent holder, exclusive
licensee must have all substantial rights in
the patent, e.g., right to enforce patent, right
to assign patent, to bring suit without patent
owner; the exclusive licensee in such a
case is effectively the assignee (Intl Gamco,
10/15/07; Morrow, 9/19/07; Central
Admixture Pharmacy Services, 4/3/07;
Bicon, 3/20/06; Aspex Eyewear, 1/10/06;
Sicom Systems, 10/19/05; Fieldturf, 2/4/04)

- Appellate standing entitled to appeal


alone - exclusive licensee not
possessing all substantial rights in the
patent need not join the patent owner
for standing to appeal; no danger of
alleged infringer being subject to
multiple infringement actions; patent
owner if not joined in the appeal
continues to be bound by the
judgments of the trial court and the
CAFC (Schwarz Pharma, 10/12/07
(case of first impression))

- Co-plaintiff standing of licensee


must hold at least some proprietary
rights under the patent (Wiav
Solutions, 12/22/10 (standing based
on an exclusive field of use license
relative to the defendants); Mitutoyo,
9/5/07 (exclusive right to sell products
made according to the patent
sufficient for standing, vs. exclusive
right to sell only licensors products is
insufficient))

- Exclusive licensee for standing


purposes a party must have

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
received, not only the right to practice
the invention within a given territory,
but also the patentees express or
implied promise that others shall be
excluded from practicing the
invention within that territory as well
(i.e., the right to exclude others); by
the same token, if the patentee allows
others to practice the patent in the
licensees territory, then the licensee
is not an exclusive licensee Rite-
Hite (Wiav Solutions, 12/22/10; Spine
Solutions, 9/9/10 (patent owners
sister company lacked standing to sue
(was a bare licensee rather than an
exclusive licensee), where there was
no express or implied promise by the
patent owner that others would be
excluded from practicing the patented
invention); Mars, 6/2/08 (wholly
owned, U.S. subsidiary was not
exclusive licensee, but rather a non-
exclusive licensee without
constitutional standing, when the
parent company, patent owner also
allowed its foreign subsidiary to
practice the patent in the U.S.))

- Exclusive license may be tantamount


to an assignment for purposes of
standing if it conveys to the licensee
all substantial rights to the patent,
conferring standing to sue solely on
the licensee (Mann Foundation,
5/14/10; (comparing exclusive
licenses and virtual assignments, and
examining the types of rights to the
patent transferred that render an

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
exclusive licensee the patent owner,
including the most important factor
which is the nature and scope of the
licensors retained right to sue
accused infringers); Asymmetrx,
9/18/09 (all substantial rights were not
conveyed); Intl Gamco, 10/15/07;
Aspex Eyewear, 1/10/06)

- Look at intention of the parties


and substance of the agreement
(Mann Foundation, 5/14/10;
Asymmetrx, 9/18/09 (no
standing where the patent
owner retained substantial
rights to the patents under the
agreement, including the right
to sue for infringement); Aspex
Eyewear, 1/10/06; Sicom
Systems, 10/18/05)

- Exclusive territorial licensee need not


join the licensor, patent owner to
maintain an infringement suit; license
confers standing as long as excludes
everyone else, including the patentee,
from practicing the patent within the
territory covered by the license
Waterman (S.C.); vs. exclusive field
of use licensee must join the licensor,
patent owner Pope (S.C.) (A123
Systems, 11/10/10 (no standing for
exclusive field of use licensee without
joining the patent owner, under long-
standing prudential standing
precedent); Intl Gamco, 10/15/07,
case of first impression, see also
dubitante opinion, S.J. Friedman))

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Exclusive enterprise license (a
hybrid between a territorial license
and a field of use license) does not
confer standing on the exclusive
licensee to bring a patent infringement
action in its own name only; does not
hold all substantial rights in the
patent; problem of multiplicity of
suits arising from exclusive field of
use license is not cured by adding
exclusive territorial restriction (Intl
Gamco, 10/15/07)

- Who owns patent? Need all


substantial rights to patent key
factor is where the right to sue for
infringement lies (Delano Farms,
8/24/11 (license must divest the
licensor of the right to enforce the
patent, citing Mann); Mann
Foundation, 5/14/10 (most important
factor); Asymmetrx, 9/18/09 (no
standing to sue by an exclusive
licensee alone where the patent owner
did not convey the entire right to
enforce the patents, stating that the
court has ruled before that the
exclusive right to sue is particularly
dispositive in cases when deciding
whether a patent owner must be
joined as a party, citing Abbott,
Vaupel); Aspex Eyewear, 1/10/06)

Bare licensee

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Bare licensee, i.e., a party with only a
covenant from the patentee that it will not be
sued for infringing the patent rights, lacks
standing to sue third parties for infringement
(Spine Solutions, 9/9/10); thus, case brought
by a bare licensee must be dismissed, and
licensee cannot cure its lack of standing by
joining the patentee as a party (Wiav
Solutions, 12/22/10; Propat Intl, 1/4/07)

- Bare licensee has no standing to sue,


even if the patent owners only
licensee in the territory a bare
license does not provide standing
without the grant of a right to exclude
others (Spine Solutions, 9/9/10)

Non-exclusive licensee

- Non-exclusive licensee has no constitutional


right to sue no standing, or right to join
suit with the patent owner, because a
nonexclusive licensee lacks the necessary
exclusionary rights under the patent statutes
and thus suffers no legal injury from
infringement (Wiav Solutions, 12/22/10;
Imation, 11/3/09 (in contract interpretation
case, explaining why non-exclusive licenses
granted in a cross-license agreement were
personal to the licensees); Mars, 6/2/08;
Morrow, 9/19/07; Bicon, 3/20/06; Sicom
Systems, 10/18/05; Schreiber Foods,
3/22/05)

- Non-exclusive patent license is


simply a promise not to sue for
infringement (Imation, 11/3/09 (citing

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Transcore); Transcore, 4/8/09 (citing
several other cases))

Curing standing defects

- Curing standing defects before final judgment


Caterpillar (S.C.) (Abraxis Bioscience, 11/9/10
(lawsuit must be dismissed if the original plaintiff
lacked Article III initial standing, and the
jurisdictional defect cannot be cured after the
inception of the lawsuit (e.g., by a nunc pro tunc
assignment) Schreiber Foods) [petition for
rehearing en banc was denied on 3/14/11 see
discussion above]; Janssen, 9/4/08 (n.9); Mars,
6/2/08 (the patentee failed to reacquire title to the
patent in order to cure standing defects to collect
past infringement damages, stating that the
procedure described in Schreiber requires a
patentee to reacquire title to a patent to correct the
jurisdictional defect that arises when the plaintiff
loses title to the patent during the litigation; the
party instead acquired only the right to sue for past
infringement); IPVenture, 9/28/07 (post-filing
assignment does not cure standing defects?);
Schreiber Foods, 3/22/05)

- Transfer of the right to sue is not effectively


the same as a transfer of title to an expired
patent; allowing one divorced from the other
would create a risk of unnecessary third
party litigation, whether or not the patent has
expired (Mars, 6/2/08)

- Curing standing defects after dismissal for failure


to join a necessary party under FRCP 19(b) may
dismiss without prejudice, to allow the plaintiff to
cure the standing defect through the joinder of the

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
proper parties or an assignment of the necessary
patent rights (U. of Pittsburgh, 6/9/09 (alleged
failure to join a patent co-owner))

Dismissal for lack of standing

- Dismissal for lack of standing is jurisdictional and


is not an adjudication on the merits dismissal
should generally be without prejudice, particularly
when the defect is curable (Abraxis Bioscience,
11/9/10 (dismissal without prejudice); Tyco,
12/7/09 (dismissal without prejudice was proper
where the plaintiff may have been able to show it
owned the asserted patents, or may have been able
to obtain ownership of the patents); U. of
Pittsburgh, 6/9/09 (district court improperly
dismissed with prejudice for lack of standing,
citing the law of the CAFC, 3rd Cir., and other
circuits))

- Dismissal for lack of standing (i.e., on motion to


dismiss) with or without prejudice? (Tyco,
12/7/09 (rejecting argument that dismissal should
have been with prejudice, where there was no
undue prejudice to the movant, including that
ownership was not raised as an issue to be
litigated, but was instead first raised during cross
examination of the plaintiffs witness); U. of
Pittsburgh, 6/9/09 (dismissal with prejudice for
allegedly failing to timely join a necessary party (a
co-owner) under FRCP 19(b) was improper); DDB
Technologies, 2/13/08; IPVenture, 9/28/07; Walter
Kidde, 3/2/07; Sicom Systems, 10/18/05; Fieldturf,
2/4/04)

- Dismissal with prejudice when second


dismissal after attempted cure (U. of

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Pittsburgh, 6/9/09 (distinguishing Sicom
where no previous attempt to cure); Sicom
Systems, 10/18/05)

- Dismissal with prejudice when plainly


unlikely that the standing defect can be
cured Fieldturf, Textile Prods. (Tyco,
12/7/09 (exception not applicable); U. of
Pittsburgh, 6/9/09 (dismissal with prejudice
was improper where the plaintiff could cure
the standing defect by adding a necessary
party))

- Dismissal of complaint when infringement


not within the U.S. (Hydril, 1/25/07
(dissent))

- Standing addressed through a motion for SJ


(U. of Pittsburgh, 6/9/09; Israel Bio-
Engineering Project, 1/29/07)

Appellate (CAFC) standing

- Appellate (CAFC) standing no standing if not


adversely affected by the judgment of the district
court (Taylor Brands, 12/9/10 (Order) (no standing
to appeal the denial of opponents motion for
attorney fees); Nisus, 8/13/07; Pods, 4/27/07;
Typeright Keyboard, 7/6/04); See also August
Tech., 11/18/13 (nonprecedential dismissing
appeal because no standing to appeal where party
was adjudged to willfully infringe but enhanced
damages were not awarded - citing Typeright
Keyboard); Research in Motion, 11/21/12 (Order)
(nonprecedential dismissing appeal because the
defendant could not appeal infringement where the
patent was held invalid in a final judgment, since

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
reversal as to infringement would not affect the
scope of the judgment applies in Section 337
cases citing Typeright Keyboard)

- Cannot appeal judgment if you won (Allflex


USA, 1/17/13; Eli Lilly, 7/20/04)

- Party must be aggrieved by judgment


below to appeal claim (Allflex USA,
1/17/13 (party cannot appeal findings
believed to be erroneous which are
unnecessary to support the district
courts decree in the partys favor
citing Supreme Court cases); Pods,
4/27/07); See also August Tech.,
11/18/13 (nonprecedential)

- Nonparties

- Nonparties may not appeal from


judgments or other actions of a
district court; true even if the
nonparty asserts that a judgment, or
some action taken by the court in
reaching the judgment, has an adverse
effect on him (Nisus, 8/13/07); See
also Advanced Magnetic Closures,
1/27/10 (Order) (nonprecedential
the CAFC lacked jurisdiction over a
nonpartys appeal of a discovery order
denying its motion to quash, stating
that nonparties may secure review of
a discovery order by refusing to
comply with it and appealing a
consequent contempt order
Connaught Labs)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Discovery orders are not
appealable (Advanced
Magnetic Closures, 1/27/10
(Order) (nonprecedential))

- Exception to the general rule


nonparty such as an attorney
held in contempt or otherwise
sanctioned by the district court
in the course of the proceedings
before the court (need some
type of formal action, e.g., a
formal reprimand, by the
district court) may appeal from
the order imposing sanctions,
either immediately or as part of
the final judgment in the
underlying case; once
sanctioned (or, more generally,
once the district court exercises
it power to punish for
misconduct), the matter
becomes personal to the
nonparty and is treated as a
judgment against him;
however, critical comments
directed to the attorney, e.g., in
an opinion, (or similarly, e.g.,
adverse findings regarding the
credibility of a witness) are not
directed at and do not alter the
legal rights of the nonparty
Precision Specialty Metals
(Allflex USA, 1/17/13 (CAFC
lacked jurisdiction over
sanctions issue where the
district court had not yet
imposed any sanction or issued

128
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
a final order regarding them -
citing Nisus); Nisus, 8/13/07
(district courts comments
regarding a prosecuting
attorneys conduct ruled as
inequitable conduct not
appealable))

- Nonparty harmed by a statement in a


courts opinion can petition for a writ
of mandamus 28 USC 1651, and
request that the statement be
expunged from the record (Nisus,
8/13/07)

- Party must seek reversal of judgment, rather


than just review of unfavorable rulings
(Pods, 4/27/07); See also August Tech.,
11/18/13 (nonprecedential alleged
erroneous findings, statements by the district
court are not appealable when the party won
below)

Declaratory judgment jurisdiction

Generally actual controversy required

- Declaratory judgment jurisdiction - standing 28


USC 2201(a) (Declaratory Judgment Act a
case of actual controversy) applies to the types
of cases justiciable under Article III of the U.S.
Constitution (Cases or Controversies)
Medimmune v. Genentech (S.C.) (Organic Seed
Growers, 6/10/13; Matthews Intl, 9/25/12;
Myriad, 8/16/12 [on remand from the U.S.
Supreme Court]; 3M, 3/26/12; Arris Group,
5/19/11; ABB, 2/17/11; Teva, 10/6/10 (Hatch-
Waxman); Green Edge, 9/7/10 (improper dismissal

129
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
where case or controversy over counterclaims of
trademark noninfringement and invalidity in suit
for trademark infringement); Janssen, 9/4/08
(Hatch-Waxman); Prasco, 8/15/08 (no justiciable
case or controversy within the meaning of the DJ
Act and Article III despite the DJ defendant,
patentees failure to sign covenant not to sue); Cat
Tech., 5/28/08; Caraco, 4/1/08 (well established
that the phrase actual controversy in 2201(a)
includes any controversy over which there is
Article III jurisdiction Aetna Life Ins. (S.C.));
Micron Technology, 2/29/08; Adenta, 9/19/07;
Sony Electronics, 8/3/07; Benitec, 7/20/07; Teva,
3/30/07; Sandisk, 3/26/07; Plumtree Software,
12/18/06; Microchip Tech., 3/15/06; Medimmune,
10/18/05 [reversed by the U.S. Supreme Court
on 1/9/07; see discussion below]; Fort James,
6/22/05; Medimmune, 6/1/05; Electronics for
Imaging, 1/5/05; Capo, 10/25/04; Sierra Applied
Sciences, 4/13/04; Gen-Probe, 3/5/04); See also
BIOTECH/PHARMA CASES Hatch-Waxman
Issues Declaratory judgment jurisdiction

- Objectives of the DJ Act must be served if so,


dismissal of the case is improper; dismissal is
discretionary, but there must be well-founded
reasons for declining DJ jurisdiction (Revolution
Eyewear, 2/13/09 (dismissal of DJ counterclaims
was improper where covenant not to sue did not
extend to future sales of the same product sued
upon); Micron Technology, 2/29/08 (discretion is
not absolute; dismissal was improper); Sony
Electronics, 8/3/07; Electronics for Imaging,
1/5/05; Capo, 10/25/04); See also Astrazeneca,
10/30/13 (nonprecedential citing Capo)

- Objectives of the DJ Act need for, and


relief from uncertainty and delay

130
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
regarding the DJ plaintiffs legal rights
(Creative Compounds, 6/24/11; Revolution
Eyewear, 2/13/09; Cat Tech., 5/28/08 (that
the plaintiff need not bet the farm, or . . .
risk treble damages . . . before seeking a
declaration of its actively contested legal
rights vs. abandoning that which has a right
to do is precisely the type of dilemma to be
resolved by the DJ Act Medimmune (S.C.);
here, absent a DJ of noninfringement, the DJ
plaintiff would have been forced to bet the
farm by making the in terrorem choice
between a growing potential liability to the
patentee and abandoning it catalyst loading
activities); Caraco, 4/1/08 (being denied the
right to sell non-infringing generic drugs
was precisely the type of injury the DJ Act
was designed to remedy); Micron
Technology, 2/29/08 (purpose of the DJ Act
is to provide the allegedly infringing party
relief from uncertainty and delay regarding
its legal rights); Electronics for Imaging,
1/5/05)

- Patent can be a scarecrow (L. Hand)


(Revolution Eyewear, 2/13/09
(referring to the scare-the-customer-
and-run tactics that the DJ Act was
intended to obviate - Sandisk);
Medimmune, 10/18/05; Capo,
10/25/04)

- DJ Act is not an independent basis for subject


matter jurisdiction the court must have
jurisdiction from some other source, i.e., the suit
must meet the case or controversy requirement of
Article III (Matthews Intl, 9/25/12; Prasco,
8/15/08 (noting that district court jurisidiction also

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
requires a statutory basis for subject matter
jurisdiction (e.g., 28 USC 1338), as well as
personal jurisdiction over the defendant); Cat
Tech., 5/28/08)

New standard Medimmune v. Genentech (S.C.)

- [New standard] All the circumstances


test is the proper standard for determining
whether a DJ action satisfies the Article III
case or controversy requirement; the
standard for determining whether there is an
actual controversy (rooted in Article III of
the Constitution (cases and controversies))
for DJ jurisdiction: the question in each case
is whether the facts alleged, under all the
circumstances, show that there is a
substantial controversy, between parties
having adverse legal interests, of sufficient
immediacy and reality to warrant the
issuance of a DJ (Myriad, 6/13/13 (S.C.)
(n.3: petitioner had DJ jurisdiction under the
Medimmune (S.C.) test); Organic Seed
Growers, 6/10/13 (affirming dismissal for
lack of DJ jurisdiction based on no risk of
suit in view of the patentees representations
(in a letter and website disclaimer), and the
possibility of future infringement was too
speculative); Arkema, 2/5/13 (reversing the
denial of motion to supplement DJ
complaint with claims regarding newly
issued patents); Matthews Intl, 9/25/12
(dispute lacked the requisite immedicacy
and reality to support DJ jurisdiction, where
the DJ plaintiff had taken no steps toward
direct infringement, and there was no
evidence as to when, if ever, customers

132
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
would use the plaintiffs equipment in a
manner that could potentially infringe
method patents); Myriad, 8/16/12; Dey
Pharma, 4/16/12 (DJ jurisdiction over suit
by second ANDA filer to trigger first filers
exclusivity period); 3M, 3/26/12; Streck,
1/10/12; ABB, 2/17/11 (DJ jurisdiction
existed, while rejecting the DJ defendants
argument that the controversy involved
solely a state law issue); Green Edge, 9/7/10
(DJ jurisdiction over trademark
counterclaims); King, 8/2/10; Dow Jones,
5/28/10); See also Cisco Systems, 8/29/13
(nonprecedential affirming no DJ
jurisdiction where the patentee at oral
argument conceded noninfringement against
the DJ plaintiff-supplier and that there were
substantial noninfringing uses for the
suppliers products, despite pending lawsuits
against the suppliers customers applying
judicial estoppel; distinguishing Arkema and
Arris; also, no indemnity agreements
between the supplier and its customers);
ALSO, Article III requires that the dispute
be definite and concrete, touching the legal
relations of parties having adverse legal
interests, and that it be real and
substantial and admi[t] of specific relief
through a decree of conclusive character, as
distinguished from an opinion advising what
the law would be upon a hypothetical state
of facts, i.e., an advisory opinion
Medimmune v. Genentech (S.C.) (Matthews
Intl, 9/25/12 (judicial determination would
be premature where there was no specific
and concrete evidence as to how customers
would use the DJ plaintiffs equipment);
3M, 3/26/12; Streck, 1/10/12; Powertech,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
9/30/11 (holding that the dispute as to
whether a license agreement required
royalty payments to be tied to valid patent
coverage was sufficient to support DJ
jurisdiction, leaving the merits-based
arguments to the district court on remand);
Creative Compounds, 6/24/11 (district court
lacked jurisdiction over DJ counterclaim of
patent invalidity where there was no
substantial controversy between the parties
concerning an adverse legal interest); Arris
Group, 5/19/11 (DJ jurisdiction based on a
suppliers possible contributory
infringement, where only the suppliers
customer was accused of (direct)
infringement); ALSO, the Supreme Courts
three-part framework for determining
whether an action presents a justiciable
Article III controversy is applied an action
is justiciable under Article III only where (1)
the plaintiff has standing, (2) the issues
presented are ripe for judicial review, and
(3) the case is not rendered moot at any
stage of the litigation See also Standing,
ripeness, and mootness requirements
(Matthews Intl, 9/25/12 (dispute not ripe
for review where immediacy and reality
requirements not met); Myriad, 8/16/12;
3M, 3/26/12 (dispute was framed as a
standing question); Teva, 10/6/10 (DJ
jurisdiction in Hatch-Waxman case);
Innovative Therapies, 4/1/10 (The specific
facts of each case must be considered, in
deciding whether a declaratory action is
warranted); Hewlett-Packard, 12/4/09;
Revolution Eyewear, 2/13/09 (district court
was not divested of jurisdiction over
declaratory counterclaims where covenant

134
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
not to sue for past infringement did not
extend to future sales of the same product
sued upon; analyzes each of the elements
being met for DJ jurisdiction under all the
circumstances, and not a request for an
advisory opinion under Medimmune (S.C.));
Janssen, 9/4/08; Prasco, 8/15/08 (lack of
immediacy and reality for justiciable
controversy was shown by a lack of
standing, i.e., absent an injury-in-fact fairly
traceable to the patentee, there could be no
immediate and real controversy; the
threshold burden of proving an immediate
and real controversy also was not met where
there was no concrete claim of a specific
right made by the parties prior to suit (e.g.,
an infringement claim by the patentee); thus,
reaching the merits of the case would
provide an advisory opinion, not permitted
under Article III); Cat Tech., 5/28/08 (ruling
that the second prong of the CAFCs DJ
jurisdiction test remains an important
element in the totality of the circumstances
considered under Medimmune (S.C.) the
issue of whether there has been meaningful
preparation to conduct potentially infringing
activity remains an important element in the
totality of circumstances which must be
considered in determining whether a
declaratory judgment is appropriate . . . If a
declaratory judgment plaintiff has not taken
significant, concrete steps to conduct
infringing activity, the dispute is neither
immediate nor real and the requirements
for justiciability have not been met);
Caraco, 4/1/08 (addressing the standing,
ripeness, and mootness requirements in the
context of the Hatch-Waxman Action; DJ

135
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
action by a subsequent Paragraph IV ANDA
filer satisfied the standing, ripeness, and
mootness requirements and thus presented a
justiciable Article III controversy); Micron
Technology, 2/29/08 (all the circumstances
must show a controversy); Adenta, 9/19/07;
Sony Electronics, 8/3/07 (Supreme Court
has not articulated a precise test, or bright-
line rule, for distinguishing cases that satisfy
the actual controversy requirement from
those that do not the difference between an
abstract question and a controversy
contemplated by the DJ Act is necessarily
one of degree); Benitec, 7/20/07; Teva,
3/30/07; Sandisk, 3/26/07); See also
Panavise Prods., 1/6/09 (nonprecedential
no immediacy and reality shown based on
the totality of the circumstances, including a
factual attack from the DJ defendant-
patentee that it had never seen or evaluated,
or was aware of, the plaintiffs product prior
to suit, and thus the plaintiffs allegations
were based on mere speculation);
Maxwell, 1/8/08 (nonprecedential - DJ
claims properly dismissed, under the
Medimmune (S.C.) standard, for lack of
subject matter jurisdiction and failure to
state a claim upon which relief could be
granted)

- Question is not whether the subjective


fear of suit is genuine, but whether the
DJ plaintiff has demonstrated a
substantial risk that the harm will
occur, which may prompt it to
reasonably incur costs to mitigate or
avoid that harm no DJ standing by
inflicting harm on self based on fears

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
of future hypothetical harm -- Clapper
(S.C.), Monsanto (S.C.) (Organic Seed
Growers, 6/10/13 (allegations of a
subjective chill from the patentee
not giving a covenant not to sue were
not an adequate substitute for a claim
of specific present objective harm or a
threat of future harm citing Clapper
(S.C.)))

- Objective, not subjective, standard


the objective words and actions of the
patentee are controlling conduct that
can be reasonably inferred as
demonstrating intent to enforce a
patent can create DJ jurisdiction
(Organic Seed Growers, 6/10/13;
Myriad, 8/16/12; Hewlett-Packard,
12/4/09 (irrelevant whether the patent
owner subjectively believed the DJ
plaintiff was infringing))

- DJ action cannot be defeated


simply by the stratagem of a
correspondence that avoids
magic words such as
litigation or infringement
Hewlett-Packard (3M, 3/26/12;
Arris Group, 5/19/11 (DJ
jurisdiction based on facts
including infringement related
meetings with the DJ plaintiff-
supplier, even though the
patentee accused only the
suppliers customer of (direct)
infringement, citing ABB for
the above rule); ABB, 2/17/11)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Specific threat of infringement
litigation by the patentee is not
required to establish
jurisdiction (Arris Group,
5/19/11 (DJ jurisdiction over
supplier based on possible
contributory infringement
where only the suppliers
customer was accused of
(direct) infringement); ABB,
2/17/11) (DJ jurisdiction was
established by warning letters
sent by the patentee))

- In patent cases, DJ jurisdiction exists


where a patentee asserts rights under
a patent based on certain identified
ongoing or planned activity of another
party, and where that party contends
that it has the right to engage in the
accused activity without license
Sandisk (Arkema, 2/5/13; Myriad,
8/16/12 (DJ jurisdiction based on
demand for royalty payment);
Hewlett-Packard, 12/4/09 (district
court had DJ jurisdiction over a patent
holding company that sent a letter to
the DJ plaintiff referring to the
relevance of the patent to a specific
product line of the plaintiff, and
which gave a two-week deadline for
response, and the patent owner
declined to agree to a standstill period
to discuss the patent))

- Intended or not, the now more lenient


legal standard for DJ actions
facilitates or enhances the availability

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
of DJ jurisdiction in patent cases
(Innovative Therapies, 4/1/10
(affirming the dismissal of DJ action
despite the liberalized criteria for
DJ actions established in Medimmune
(S.C.)); Hewlett-Packard, 12/4/09
(citing above rule from Micron Tech.,
but adding that lowering the bar for
DJ jurisdiction does not mean no bar
at all a communication from a
patent owner to another party, merely
identifying its patent and the other
partys product line, without more,
cannot establish adverse legal
interests between the parties, let alone
the existence of a definite and
concrete dispute. More is required to
establish declaratory judgment
jurisdiction.); Cat Tech., 5/28/08
(citing Micron Tech.) presents
unique challenges (Micron
Technology, 2/29/08)

- Competing forum interests


between parties decided by
transfer analysis - the resulting
ease is accompanied by unique
challenges such as forum-
seeking races to the courthouse
between accused infringers and
patentees; thus the trial court
needs to consider the
convenience factors found in
the transfer analysis of 28 USC
1404(a) (Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10
(distinguishing Micron
Technology); Micron

139
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Technology, 2/29/08 (using
transfer analysis, the district
courts dismissal of a DJ action
was improper))

- Medimmune (S.C.) (in footnote 11)


overruled, eliminated the CAFCs
reasonable apprehension of
(imminent) suit test as the sole test
for jurisdiction, in favor of the all the
circumstances test (Streck, 1/10/12;
Powertech, 9/30/11; Arris Group,
5/19/11; ABB, 2/17/11; Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10 (Although
Medimmune held that a reasonable
apprehension of suit for infringement
is not always required to establish
declaratory jurisdiction, the particular
circumstances must be considered);
Revolution Eyewear, 2/13/09; Prasco,
8/15/08 (While the Supreme Court
rejected the reasonable apprehension
of suit test as the sole test for
jurisdiction, it did not completely do
away with the relevance of a
reasonable apprehension of suit (see
below)); Cat Tech., 5/28/08; Caraco,
4/1/08; Micron Technology, 2/29/08;
Adenta, 9/19/07; Sony Electronics,
8/3/07; Benitec, 7/20/07; Honeywell,
5/25/07; Teva, 3/30/07; Sandisk,
3/26/07)

- Following Medimmune (S.C.),


proving a reasonable
apprehension of suit is one of
multiple ways that a DJ
plaintiff can satisfy the

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Supreme Courts more general
all-the-circumstances test to
establish that an action presents
a justiciable Article III
controversy (Arkema, 2/5/13
(n.5); Streck, 1/10/12
(affirming no DJ jurisdiction
over unasserted or withdrawn
patent claims under the totality
of the circumstances, despite
the district courts incorrect
reliance on only a lack of a
reasonable apprehension of
suit); Prasco, 8/15/08; Caraco,
4/1/08)

- Second prong of the DJ test,


i.e., whether there has been
potentially infringing activity
or meaningful preparation to
conduct potentially infringing
activity, remains an important
element in the totality of the
circumstances (Organic Seed
Growers, 6/10/13 (DJ plaintiff
must allege significant,
concrete steps to conduct
infringing activity Cat Tech);
Matthews Intl, 9/25/12;
Myriad, 8/16/12 (concluding
DJ jurisdiction based on one DJ
plaintiffs preparation to
infringe, where the plaintiff was
prepared to and would use the
patented gene testing once the
patents were declared invalid);
Innovative Therapies, 4/1/10
(patentees knowledge of the

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
DJ plaintiffs representations to
the FDA that the plaintiffs
product had the same
technological characteristics
as the patentees approved
product did not create DJ
jurisdication); Prasco, 8/15/08
(not at issue where the DJ
plaintiff was making and
selling the accused product at
the time of the amended
complaint); Cat Tech., 5/28/08)

- No bright-line rule there is no


facile, all-purpose standard to police
the line between DJ actions that
satisfy the case or controversy
requirement and those that do not; to
the contrary, the difference between
an abstract question and a
controversy contemplated by the DJ
Act is necessarily one of degree
thus, unable to fashion a precise test
for determining in every case whether
there is such a controversy Md.
Cas. Co. (S.C.) (Organic Seed
Growers, 6/10/13; Matthews Intl,
9/25/12; Myriad, 8/16/12; 3M,
3/26/12; Streck, 1/10/12; Hewlett-
Packard, 12/4/09; Prasco, 8/15/08;
Cat Tech., 5/28/08); See also Panavise
Prods., 1/6/09 (nonprecedential
stating the rule, and that the lack of
direct pre-complaint communication
between a patentee and a DJ plaintiff
by itself (which the district had
concluded was in part dispositive of
the jurisdictional question) is not

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
sufficient to defeat subject matter
jurisdiction)

- Well-established in patent cases


that the existence of a case or
controversy must be evaluated
on a claim-by-claim basis
Webb (Streck, 1/10/12
(affirming the district courts
lack of jurisdiction over
unasserted patent claims))

- Unasserted or withdrawn patent


claims counterclaimant must
show a continuing case or
controversy with respect to
withdrawn or otherwise
unasserted claims (Fox Group,
11/28/12 (the district court
erred in also holding unasserted
claims invalid because lacked
jurisdiction over them where no
case or controversy
discussing Streck and Scanner
Techs.); Streck, 1/10/12
(relying in part on Hoffman-La
Roche (D.N.J.), and
distinguishing Scanner Techs.))

- Substantial controversy needed


between parties having adverse legal
interests, of sufficient immediacy
and reality to warrant the issuance of
a DJ (Organic Seed Growers, 6/10/13
(affirming lack of DJ jurisdiction
where there were no concrete plans to
infringe outside the scope of the
patentees representation (similar to a

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
covenant not to sue) that it would not
sue the appellants for inadvertently
using or selling trace amounts of
patented genetically modified seed,
and fear of future infringement going
outside the scope of the patentees
representation was too speculative
distinguishing Arkema); Arkema,
2/5/13 (reversing the denial of motion
to supplement DJ complaint with
claims regarding newly issued
patents, where there was a substantial
controversy with respect to the patents
based on the DJ plaintiffs intent to
supply U.S. auto manufacturers with
product for use in air conditioning
systems, which when used would
directly infringe method patents -
distinguishing Matthews; also, Arris
Group does not require accusations of
direct infringement for a suppliers
standing to seek a DJ regarding its
potential indirect infringement
liability); Matthews Intl, 9/25/12;
Myriad, 8/16/12; Arris Group,
5/19/11; Dow Jones, 5/28/10
(covenant not to sue divested the
district court of jurisdiction to decide
anticipation counterclaim); Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10 (informal phone
conversations between employees of
the DJ plaintiff and DJ defendant did
not produce a controversy of such
immediacy and reality); Hewlett-
Packard, 12/4/09; Revolution
Eyewear, 2/13/09 (requirement met
where DJ counterclaimant was
prepared to return to market with

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
alleged infringing product); Prasco,
8/15/08 (complete lack of evidence of
a defined, preexisting dispute
between the parties; the patentees
marking of its products under section
287 provided little, if any, evidence
that it would enforce its patents, and
thus did not show an imminent threat
of harm sufficient to create an actual
controversy); Cat Tech., 5/28/08
(ruling (for the first time post-
Medimmune (S.C.)) that the second
prong of the CAFCs DJ jurisdiction
test, i.e., that the DJ plaintiff has taken
significant, concrete steps (made
meaningful preparation) to conduct
potentially infringing activity, must be
satisfied to meet the immediacy and
reality requirements for DJ
justiciability under Medimmune
(S.C.)); Micron Technology, 2/29/08
(the record evidence amply supported
a real and substantial dispute
between the parties, including where
the patentee filed an infringement suit
the day after the filing of the DJ
action); Adenta, 9/19/07; Sony
Electronics, 8/3/07; Benitec, 7/20/07;
Teva, 3/30/07; Sandisk, 3/26/07;
Microchip Tech., 3/15/06;
Medimmune, 10/18/05; Medimmune,
6/1/05; Teva, 1/21/05; Sierra Applied
Sciences, 4/13/04)

- Adverse legal interest


requires a dispute as to a legal
right, for example, an
underlying legal cause of action

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
that the DJ defendant could
have brought or threatened to
bring against the DJ plaintiff,
e.g., DJ plaintiff infringing the
DJ defendants patent; vs.
adverse economic interest or
economic injury of the DJ
plaintiff (e.g., unable to sell
products without subjecting
customers to possible litigation)
is not a legally cognizable
interest to confer DJ
jurisdiction (unless action is
brought against the
government) (Arkema, 2/5/13
(DJ jurisdiction where legal
right to the patented technology
disputed); Powertech, 9/30/11
(addressing adverse legal
interest of the licensee-supplier
(contributory infringement
based on direct infringement by
its customers) in Arris Group);
Creative Compounds, 6/24/11
(district court lacked DJ
jurisdiction over patent where
the DJ (counterclaim)
defendant had sent threatening
letters to customers of the DJ
plaintiffs predecessor only,
and the DJ plaintiff had at most
only an economic interest in
clarifying its customers rights
under the patent; also rejecting
argument that a fight over
competing patents showed an
underlying cause of action
under Section 291, where

146
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
neither party filed a Section 291
action, showed there was an
interference, nor sought to
identify common claimed
subject matter; also, exception
for when indemnity agreement
in place); Arris Group, 5/19/11
(basing DJ jurisdiction on other
well-established standards;
also, n.4: exception in Hatch-
Waxman cases); Benitec,
7/20/07; Microchip Tech.,
3/15/06); See also Personalized
Media, 8/23/12
(nonprecedential J. Mayer,
concurring no jurisdiction
over DJ action involving scope
of license, where the licensee
was asking for an advisory
opinion)

- Sufficient immediacy and


reality requirement of
Medimmune (S.C.) (Arkema,
2/5/13 (reversing the district
court, where the requirement
was met -- distinguishing
Matthews); Matthews Intl,
9/25/12 (immediacy and reality
requirements unmet); Myriad,
8/16/12; 3M, 3/26/12 (one year
passage of time until DJ action
filed did not counsel against
finding DJ jurisdiction where
the relevant circumstances
surrounding the patentees
assertion of patent rights had
not changed, and the need for

147
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
time to conduct a pre-filing
investigation of the patents
citing Myriad); Revolution
Eyewear, 2/13/09 (requirement
met for DJ counterclaims); Cat
Tech., 5/28/08 (requirements
for DJ of noninfringement were
met); Benitec, 7/20/07 (no
infringement based on
271(e)(1) exemption, plus
present or future plans for
infringement, showed absence
of sufficient immediacy and
reality; to allow such a scant
showing to provoke DJ
jurisdiction would be to allow
nearly anyone who so desired
to challenge a patent)); See
also Panavise Prods., 1/6/09
(nonprecedential lack of
jurisdiction where not alleged
that the DJ defendant restrained
the plaintiffs right to freely
market its products, and the DJ
complaint was based only on
assumptions about a threat of
future injury, ruling that the
real and immediate injury or
threat of future injury must be
caused by the defendants,
which is an objective standard
that cannot be met by a purely
subjective or speculative fear of
future harm Prasco)

- Concrete steps taken to


infringe - immediacy =
time, while reality (vs.

148
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
hypothetical) = whether
the infringement is
substantially fixed as
opposed to fluid and
indeterminate at the
time DJ relief is sought
(Arkema, 2/5/13
(distinguishing
Matthews); Matthews
Intl, 9/25/12 (DJ
plaintiff failed to provide
evidence of the specific
parameters under which
its units would likely be
operated, and thus
determine whether
infringing judicial
determination would be
an advisory opinion
based on hypothetical
facts); Cat Tech., 5/28/08
(significant, concrete
steps were taken to
infringe, and thus the
dispute was immediate
and real, where the DJ
plaintiff was prepared to
produce catalyst loading
devices as soon as
customized orders were
received from customers,
and all of the devices
were substantially fixed,
i.e., would not change in
design)); Medimmune,
10/18/05; Medimmune,
6/1/05; Teva, 1/21/05;

149
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Sierra Applied Sciences,
4/13/04)

- Meaningful
preparation for making
or using the potentially
infringing product is
required; in general, the
greater the length of time
before potentially
infringing activity is
expected to occur, the
more likely the case
lacks the requisite
immediacy Sierra
Applied Scis. (Arkema,
2/5/13; Matthews Intl,
9/25/12; Myriad, 8/16/12
(some day intentions
do not support standing);
Cat Tech., 5/28/08)

- Sales literature for the


product or otherwise
disclosing the product to
potential customers is not
an indispensable
prerequisite as long as
all the circumstances
otherwise support DJ
jurisdiction (Cat Tech.,
5/28/08)

- Suppliers standing to bring DJ


action where only the suppliers
customers are accused of direct
infringement, if 1) supplier is
obligated to indemnify the

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
customer for infringement, or
2) dipute between the patentee
and supplier regarding induced
or contributory infringement =
the patentees implicit assertion
of indirect infringement
(Matthews Intl, 9/25/12 (n.4:
dispute not ripe for review);
Arris Group, 5/19/11 (DJ
jurisdiction based on possible
contributory infringement by
the DJ plaintiff-supplier))

- Standing, ripeness, and lack of


mootness doctrines can be a helpful
guide in applying the all-the-
circumstances test, as satisfying these
doctrines represents the absolute
constitutional minimum for a
justiciable controversy (3M, 3/26/12
(the parties framed the DJ issue as a
standing question); Prasco, 8/15/08
(knowledge of a patent is not enough
for standing; rather, it is the reality of
the threat of injury that is relevant to
the standing inquiry, not the
plaintiffs subjective apprehensions,
i.e., there must be an injury or threat
of injury caused by the defendant for
there to be an Article III case or
controversy)); See also Standing,
ripeness, and mootness requirements

Old standard

- [Old standard] Actual controversy


between interested parties (28 USC

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
2201(a)) is established based on the totality
of circumstances and a two-part test: 1) an
explicit threat or other action by the
patentee, which creates a reasonable
apprehension on the part of the DJ plaintiff
that it will face an infringement suit, and 2)
present activity by the DJ plaintiff which
could constitute infringement, or concrete
steps taken with the intent to conduct such
activity [The reasonable apprehension of
suit prong of the two-part test was
rejected by the U.S. Supreme Court in
Medimmune v. Genentech, decided on
1/9/07 (see footnote 11) see Sandisk v.
STMicroelectronics, 3/26/07 (The
Supreme Courts opinion in Medimmune
represents a rejection of our reasonable
apprehension of suit test . . . We leave to
another day the effect of Medimmune, if
any, on the second prong.); see
discussion of Medimmune v. Genentech
below] (Plumtree Software, 12/18/06;
Microchip Tech., 3/15/06; Medimmune,
10/18/05 [reversed by the U.S. Supreme
Court on 1/9/07]; Medimmune, 6/1/05;
Teva, 1/21/05; Sierra Applied Sciences,
4/13/04; Gen-Probe, 3/5/04)

- DJ plaintiffs purported apprehension


of its customers being sued, absent
any adverse legal interest existing
between the plaintiff and defendant
(or between the plaintiffs customers
and the defendant, with legal
relationship between the plaintiff and
customer, e.g., indemnity agreement)
does not satisfy reasonable
apprehension test (Creative

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Compounds, 6/24/11 (economic
interest only in the absence of an
indemnity agreement between the DJ
plaintiff and its customers); Arris
Group, 5/19/11 (concluding other
bases for DJ jurisdiction); Microchip
Tech., 3/15/06); See also Cisco
Systems, 8/29/13 (nonprecedential
affirming no DJ jurisdiction over suit
by supplier, despite pending suits
against the suppliers customers,
where no indemnity agreements
between the supplier and customers,
and the supplier had not sought to
intervene in any of the customer
cases)

- Reasonable apprehension prong is a


constitutional, rather than prudential,
requirement (Teva, 1/21/05)

- Reasonable apprehension of
imminent suit is necessary (Teva,
1/21/05 [rejected by Medimmune
(S.C.)])

- Reasonable apprehension is not


dissipated by the passage of time,
where the patentee does not sign a
covenant not to sue; reasonable
apprehension may only be eliminated
in narrow circumstances because
otherwise a patent holder could
attempt extra-judicial patent
enforcement with scare-and-run
tactics that the DJ Act was intended to
forstall (Prasco, 8/15/08 (no DJ
jurisdiction despite the DJ defendant,

153
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
patentees failure to sign a covenant
not to sue); Plumtree Software,
12/18/06)

- Two-part test is objective (Capo,


10/25/04)

- Two-part test is applied


separately to different products,
to avoid the risk of an advisory
opinion (Sierra Applied
Sciences, 4/13/04)

Burden on DJ plaintiff

- Burden is on the party claiming DJ


jurisdiction to establish that such jurisdiction
existed at the time the claim for declaratory
relief was filed and that it has continued
since (Organic Seed Growers, 6/10/13;
Arkema, 2/5/13; Matthews Intl, 9/25/12;
Dey Pharma, 4/16/12 (question of whether a
controversy existed at a later stage of a DJ
action by a second ANDA filer was
governed by mootness doctrine the party
arguing the case is moot bears the heavy
burden of persuading the court); Streck,
1/10/12 (no DJ jurisdiction over unasserted
or withdrawn patent claims); Powertech,
9/30/11; Arris Group, 5/19/11; King, 8/2/10;
Dow Jones, 5/28/10; Innovative Therapies,
4/1/10 (amended complaint, which was
actually a supplemental complaint under
FRCP 15(d), did not create DJ jurisdiction
based on acts subsequent to the filing of the
original DJ complaint, citing the Benitec
rule); Janssen, 9/4/08; Benitec, 7/20/07 (DJ

154
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
counterclaims)); See also Cisco Systems,
8/29/13 (nonprecedential); Panavise Prods.,
1/6/09 (nonprecedential the DJ plaintiff
failed to demonstrate facts sufficient to rebut
the defendants factual challenge to DJ
jurisdiction)

- Case or controversy, presence or


absence thereof, is based on facts at
time the complaint was filed, and
must continue since the time the
complaint was filed (Streck, 1/10/12;
Innovative Therapies, 4/1/10 (DJ
jurisdiction is determined at the time
of the original complaint, rather than
at the time of an amended complaint,
distinguishing Prasco which did not
. . . change the rule that unless there
was jurisdiction at the filing of the
original complaint, jurisdiction could
not be carried back to the date of the
original pleading); Janssen, 9/4/08;
Benitec, 7/20/07) later events
cannot create jurisdiction (Prasco,
8/15/08 (issue of DJ jurisdiction was
based on the amended complaint, as
the proper focus in determining
jurisdiction are the facts existing at
the time the complaint under
consideration was filed);
Medimmune, 6/1/05; Sierra Applied
Sciences, 4/13/04); See also Panavise
Prods., 1/6/09 (nonprecedential the
allegations in the complaint are not
controlling if a DJ defendant
adequately challenges jurisdiction in
fact)

155
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Jurisdiction must exist at all
stages of review, and not
merely at the time the
complaint was filed Benitec
(Streck, 1/10/12)

- Jurisdiction based on events


subsequent to the original complaint
does not relate back to the filing date
of the original complaint (Matthews
Intl, 9/25/12 (affirming that district
court was without authority to
consider system patent issued and
added to case after the filing of the
original complaint, where the court
had no jurisdiction over method
patents in the original complaint);
Innovative Therapies, 4/1/10)

- If a party has actually been charged


with infringement, there is necessarily
a case or controversy adequate to
support (DJ) jurisdiction at that time
(i.e., via counterclaims) Cardinal
Chemical (S.C.) (Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10; Benitec, 7/20/07
(addressing whether subsequent
events can divest the district courts
jurisdiction))

- Once burden has been met, absent


further information, the jurisdiction
continues; the burden of bringing
forth such further information may
logically rest with the party
challenging jurisdiction, but the actual
burden of proof remains with the
party seeking to invoke jurisdiction

156
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(Dey Pharma, 4/16/12 (discussing
Benitec and the mootness doctrine as
applied to a DJ action by a second
ANDA filer to trigger a first ANDA
filers exclusivity period); Benitec,
7/20/07 (see J. Dyk, dissenting - that
Cardinal Chemical (S.C.) holds that
the burden shifts to the party seeking
to divest the court of jurisdiction to
prove there is no longer a current case
or controversy; a different test for
determining whether there is a case or
controversy applies when the
allegation of infringement is
withdrawn during the course of
litigation if a patentee files an
infringement suit and the particular
claim of infringement is mooted, an
invalidity counterclaim should not be
dismissed unless that patentee
demonstrates that there is no
possibility of a future controversy
with respect to invalidity Cardinal
Chemical (S.C.); important interest in
protecting the legal system against
manipulation by parties))

- DJ plaintiff need not present evidence


of indirect infringement for DJ
jurisdiction -- since the very purpose
of the DJ action is to seek a judicial
determination that the DJ plaintiff is
not indirectly infringing (Matthews
Intl, 9/25/12; Arris Group, 5/19/11)

- Allegations alone are insufficient to meet the


DJ plaintiffs burden to establish
jurisdiction, once challenged (3M, 3/26/12

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(remanding for the district court to
determine facts in the first instance relevant
to whether DJ jurisdiction))

- DJ action for noninfringement by licensee


against the patentee-licensor the DJ
plaintiff (licensee) has the burden of
persuasion on noninfringement when the DJ
defendant (patentee-licensor) is unable to
bring a counterclaim for infringement
because of the license (Medtronic, 9/18/12
(providing as the reason for the above rule
that the accused infringer-licensee was the
party requesting relief from the court as to
its obligations under the license agreement)
[On 5/20/13, the U.S. Supreme Court
granted certiorari in Medtronic v. Boston
Scientific the question presented is
whether, in a DJ action brought by a
licensee under Medimmune (i.e., where
the licensee was not required to break or
terminate its license agreement before
seeking the DJ), the licensee has the
burden to prove that its products do not
infringe the patent, or whether (as is the
case in all other patent litigation,
including other DJ actions), the patentee
must prove infringement?]

Standing, ripeness, and mootness requirements

- Standing and ripeness required - for a


justiciable Article III controversy, need
standing and ripeness (shown by all the
circumstances test) - the party instituting
the action must have standing (allege injury-
in-fact, i.e., personal injury fairly traceable

158
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
to the defendants allegedly unlawful
conduct, which is likely (rather than merely
speculative) to be redressed by the requested
relief Lujan (S.C.)), and that the issue be
ripe for adjudication (i.e., focuses on
whether the defendants actions have
harmed, are harming, or are about to harm
the plaintiff) (Myriad, 8/16/12 (passage of
time since threatening communications to
the DJ plaintiff from the patentee did not
detract from DJ jurisdiction); 3M, 3/26/12;
Prasco, 8/15/08; Caraco, 4/1/08 (closely
examines standing (and the elements of
standing), ripeness, and mootness
requirements in the context of a DJ action
brought by a subsequent Paragraph IV
ANDA filer); Teva, 3/30/07); See also
APPELLATE/DISTRICT COURT
JURISDICTION - Standing

- Injury in fact traceable to the patentee


the DJ plaintiff must allege an
affirmative act by the patentee
relating to the enforcement of his
patent rights SanDisk (3M, 3/26/12)

- Injury in fact alleged in most DJ


actions in the patent context for
establishing standing a restraint on
the free exploitation of non-infringing
goods or an imminent threat of such
restraint Red Wing Shoe Co.
(Prasco, 8/15/08; Caraco, 4/1/08)

- Patentee can cause such injury


in a variety of ways, including
creating a reasonable
apprehension of suit,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
demanding the right to royalty
payments, or creating a barrier
to the regulatory approval of a
product that is necessary for
marketing (e.g., Caraco)
(Prasco, 8/15/08)

- Mootness doctrine requires that the


requisite personal stake that is
required for a party to have standing
at the outset of an action must
continue to exist throughout all stages
of the action (Caraco, 4/1/08 (NDA
holders unilateral covenant not to sue
a subsequent Paragraph IV ANDA
filer did not render moot the
subsequent ANDA filers DJ action,
where the covenant not to sue did not
eliminate the controversy, which
could only be resolved by a judgment
that determined whether the ANDA
filers generic drug was infringing));
See also Nissim, 12/11/12
(nonprecedential)

District courts discretion

- Discretion of district court - exercise of


jurisdiction over a DJ action is discretionary,
even if an actual controversy exists 28
USC 2201 court . . . may declare the
rights . . . (Matthews Intl, 9/25/12; 3M,
3/26/12 (declining to opine on a
discretionary decision that the district court
had yet to make, after remanding for fact
findings relevant to whether there was DJ
jurisdiction); Powertech, 9/30/11 (district

160
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
court abused its discretion in dismissing DJ
action by ignoring forum selection clause in
license agreement, in light of choice-of-law
provision manifesting the parties intent that
California law apply to the license
agreement); Teva, 10/6/10 (discretion also
applies to Hatch-Waxman cases despite
shall in Section 271(e)(5)); Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10; Cat Tech., 5/28/08 (the
district court has no discretion to decide the
case when no actual controversy, but does
have discretion even when there is an actual
controversy); Micron Technology, 2/29/08
(discretion abused in dismissing DJ action);
Sony Electronics, 8/3/07; Teva, 3/30/07;
Sandisk, 3/26/07; Tegic Communications,
8/10/06; Capo, 10/25/04; Sierra Applied
Sciences, 4/13/04)

- Courts have unique and substantial


discretion under the DJ Act in
deciding whether to declare the rights
of litigants Wilton (S.C.) (Matthews
Intl, 9/25/12 (n.3); Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10 (no abuse of
discretion in dismissing DJ action,
citing Sony); Sony Electronics,
8/3/07)

- Court must determine whether


resolving the case serves the
objectives for which the DJ Act was
created - Capo (Innovative Therapies,
4/1/10 (objectives of the DJ Act
would not be served where the DJ
plaintiff used informal phone
conversations with the patentees
employees as a ploy to create DJ

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
jurisdiction); Cat Tech., 5/28/08 (that
the plaintiff need not bet the farm, or
. . . risk treble damages . . . before
seeking a declaration of its actively
contested legal rights vs. abandoning
that which has a right to do is
precisely the type of dilemma to be
resolved by the DJ Act Medimmune
(S.C.))); See also Astrazeneca,
10/30/13 (nonprecedential)

- Boundaries to a district courts


discretion (Teva, 10/6/10 (discretion
is not unbounded the district court
abused its discretion (as defined) in
declining DJ jurisdiction); Micron
Technology, 2/29/08; Sony
Electronics, 8/3/07) when there is an
actual controversy and a DJ would
settle the legal relations in dispute and
afford relief from uncertainty or
insecurity, in the usual circumstances
the DJ is not subject to dismissal
(Micron Technology, 2/29/08;
Sandisk, 3/26/07)

- Exercise of discretion must be


supported by a sound basis for
refusing to adjudicate an actual
controversy (Teva, 10/6/10 (no sound
basis); Sandisk, 3/26/07); See also
Astrazeneca, 10/30/13
(nonprecedential no abuse of
discretion in dismissing without
prejudice invalidity counterclaims
after noninfringement found - citing
Capo)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Pending reexamination
suggested by the CAFC as a
basis for exercising discretion
to dismiss or stay DJ action
(Sony Electronics, 8/3/07)

- Infringement counterclaim in
response to a DJ action is not
necessary for the district courts
jurisdiction - Capo (Adenta, 9/19/07
(DJ of invalidity))

- Withdrawn patent claims district


court retains jurisidiction over request
for declaratory relief for invalidity of
withdrawn claims, when the patentee
does not withdraw related claims
(Honeywell, 5/25/07); See also
Astrazeneca, 10/30/13
(nonprecedential no abuse of
discretion in dismissing without
prejudice invalidity counterclaims
with respect to withdrawn claims)

Existence of patent not enough

- More is required for an actual controversy


than the existence of an adversely held
patent objective standard whether the
patentee manifested an intention to enforce
patent(s) (Organic Seed Growers, 6/10/13;
Matthews Intl, 9/25/12; Myriad, 8/16/12
(DJ jurisdiction based on only one DJ
plaintiff who alleged affirmative patent
enforcement actions directed at them by the
DJ defendant-patentee); 3M, 3/26/12;
Creative Compounds, 6/24/11 (DJ

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(counterclaim) plaintiff had at most an
economic interest in clarifying its
customers rights under the DJ defendants
patent, and the existence of the DJ
defendants patent would not affect the DJ
plaintiffs own patent); Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10 (Medimmune (S.C.) did
not hold that a patent can always be
challenged whenever it appears to pose a
risk of infringement); Hewlett-Packard,
12/4/09; Prasco, 8/15/08 (referring to the
bedrock rule that a case or controversy
must be based on a real and immediate
injury or threat of future injury that is
caused by the defendants an objective
standard that cannot be met by a purely
subjective or speculative fear of future
harm); Sandisk, 3/26/07; Teva, 1/21/05;
Capo, 10/25/04)

Patentees lack of assurances or silence on


enforcement

- Patentees refusal to give assurances that it


will not enforce its patent, although relevant
to the DJ determination, is not dispositive
(3M, 3/26/12; Arris Group, 5/19/11 (citing
Prasco for rule that relevant to DJ
determination, where the patentee refused to
grant a covenant not to sue); Prasco, 8/15/08
(stating with regard to the patentees failure
to sign a covenant not to sue after receiving
samples of the competitors product: A
patentee has no obligation to spend the time
and money to test a competitors product nor
to make a definitive determination, at the
time and place of the competitors choosing,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
that it will never bring an infringement suit.
And the patentees silence does not alone
make an infringement action or other
interference with the plaintiffs business
imminent.); See also Covenant not to sue

Patentees statements regarding enforcement

- Direct communication between a patentee


and a DJ plaintiff is unnecessary to confer
standing Arrowhead; but, the nature and
extent of any communications between the
two are relevant factors for determining if
DJ jurisdiction (3M, 3/26/12 (DJ jurisdiction
existed based on facts where the patentees
counsel expressly told the DJ plaintiffs
counsel that a specific product may
infringe and that licenses are available);
Arris Group, 5/19/11 (DJ jurisdiction where
DJ plaintiff-supplier was within the
patentees primary intended audience))

- Patentee need not disclose deadlines


for DJ jurisdiction (3M, 3/26/12)

- Cease and desist letter DJ jurisdiction


(Green Edge, 9/7/10)

- DJ action cannot be defeated simply


by the stratagem of a correspondence
that avoids magic words such as
litigation or infringement
Hewlett-Packard (3M, 3/26/12; Arris
Group, 5/19/11; ABB, 2/17/11
(warning letters sent by the patentee
indicated an immediate controversy
surrounding infringement))

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Statements made by the patentees
employees (3M, 3/26/12 (distinguishing
Innovative Therapies where phone
conversation was initiated by the patentees
counsel); Innovative Therapies, 4/1/10
(impromptu statements regarding patent
enforcement made by the patentees
employees during informal phone
conversations with employees of the DJ
plaintiff in the guise of friendly
conversations did not constitute a threat of
suit for infringement against a device that
the patentee had not seen or evaluated for
infringement))

Prior, other pending litigation with the patentee

- Course of conduct of the patentee (e.g.,


prior suits involving the same technology,
and same parties, patents) considered in
assessing the totality of the circumstances
(Myriad, 8/16/12 (that DJ plaintiff was
aware that patentee was asserting patent
rights against other similarly situated parties
supported DJ jurisdiction); 3M, 3/26/12
(patentee was a direct competitor with a
history of enforcing its patent rights against
the DJ plaintiff); Powertech, 9/30/11 (DJ
jurisdiction based on other pending suits
(district court and ITC) by the patentee
regarding the same patent against the DJ
plaintiffs customers); Green Edge, 9/7/10
(single suit was not a pattern); Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10 (no actual controversy was
established between the parties, despite the
patentees prior litigations, in the absence of

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
any act by the patentee directed toward the
DJ plaintiff, and where the patentee had not
seen and evaluated the DJ plaintiffs product
citing Prasco and distinguishing Micron
Tech.); Hewlett-Packard, 12/4/09 (n.1);
Prasco, 8/15/08 (prior litigious conduct is
one circumstance to be considered in
assessing whether the totality of
circumstances creates an actual
controversy); Micron Technology, 2/29/08;
Adenta, 9/19/07; Teva, 3/30/07; Plumtree
Software, 12/18/06); See also Panavise
Prods., 1/6/09 (nonprecedential the fact
that the defendant routinely enforced its
patent rights, when viewed under the totality
of the circumstances, was insufficient to
create an actual controversy, where the prior
lawsuits involving the same patent
concerned different products, and the DJ
plaintiff did not argue that its product was
similar to any of those accused products)

- Related litigation involving the same


technology and the same parties is
relevant in determining whether a
justiciable DJ controversy exists on
other related patents (Organic Seed
Growers, 6/10/13 (citing cases);
Arkema, 2/5/13; Prasco, 8/15/08
(prior suit based on different products
and unrelated patent failed to show
controversy); Teva, 3/30/07)

- An amorphous, widespread
understanding of a risk of suit is not
sufficient Myriad (Organic Seed
Growers, 6/10/13 (n.3))

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Covenant not to sue

- Covenant (vs. promise) not to sue divests a


court of jurisdiction (Organic Seed Growers,
6/10/13 (covenant not to sue was not given,
but the patentees representations, which
unequivocally disclaimed any intent to sue
appellants for inadvertently using or selling
trace amounts of patented genetically
modified seed, had a similar effect, divesting
the district court of DJ jurisdiction the
patentees representations were binding as a
matter of judicial estoppel); Arris Group,
5/19/11 (DJ jurisdiction despite an alleged
express disclaimer of infringement and
counsels statements to the same effect
during CAFC oral argument, where neither
amounted to a covenant not to sue the DJ
plaintiff-supplier for indirect infringement;
n.15 citing cases); King, 8/2/10 (no case or
controversy and thus vacating invalidity
judgment based on a counterclaim against a
former patent owner who sold all rights in
the patents to the plaintiff and represented to
both the district court and the defendant that
it waived any right to seek damages for past
infringement a broad and unrestricted
covenant not to sue); Dow Jones, 5/28/10
(district court was divested of jurisdiction to
decide anticipation counterclaim after the
patentee granted a covenant not to sue,
despite any prudential reasons for the
district court to render the judgment);
Revolution Eyewear, 2/13/09 (covenant not
to sue for past infringement did not divest
the district court of jurisdiction over
declaratory counterclaims where the
covenant did not extend to future sales of the

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
same product sued upon; distinguished
district court cases where covenants not to
sue included future infringement of the same
product); Janssen, 9/4/08 (Caraco
distinguished; also, a covenant was not
deficient where having manufactured
language expressly covered all suppliers and
affiliates involved in manufacturing, as well
as downstream customers); Prasco, 8/15/08
(DJ defendant, patentees failure to sign
covenant not to sue was not dispositive of
whether or not DJ jurisdiction); Caraco,
4/1/08 (district court had jurisdiction over a
subsequent Paragraph IV ANDA filers DJ
action, despite the NDA holders covenant
not to sue the ANDA filer for infringement
(notably, the covenant did not concede
noninfringement of the subject patent),
because an actual controversy existed based
on the ANDA filers need to trigger the 180-
day exclusivity period of the first Paragraph
IV ANDA filer before the subsequent filers
ANDA could be approved); Monsanto,
1/25/08 (district court retained independent
jurisdiction to hold patents no longer in the
case were unenforceable for IC based on the
DJ plaintiffs request for attorney fees under
Section 285); Benitec, 7/20/07 (no actual
controversy based on all the circumstances
where the possibility of future infringement
was too speculative); Plumtree Software,
12/18/06; Tegic Communications, 8/10/06;
Microchip Tech., 3/15/06); See also Cisco
Systems, 8/29/13 (nonprecedential
affirming no DJ jurisdiction where patentee
was willing to grant an unqualified covenant
not to sue); Merck, 7/16/08 (nonprecedential
- exception to the rule in the Hatch-Waxman

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
context, citing Caraco); Apotex v. Pfizer,
4/11/05 (nonprecedential - Apotexs appeal
was mooted by Pfizers covenant not to sue
Apotex for infringement (executed by Pfizer
only days before oral argument) a
covenant not to sue moots an action for
declaratory judgment); See also
APPELLATE/DISTRICT COURT
JURISDICTION - Subject matter
jurisdiction

- Covenant not to sue is distinguishable


from a limited standstill period (for
the parties to discuss patent rights)
(Hewlett-Packard, 12/4/09)

- Covenant not to sue by the patentee


filed after a noninfringement decision
by the jury does not divest the district
court of jurisdiction to hear the
accused infringers counterclaims, vs.
covenant not to sue filed prior to
resolution of the underlying
infringement claim does divest the
district court of DJ jurisdiction (Dow
Jones, 5/28/10 (addressing rule, under
which the district court was unable to
decide an anticipation counterclaim);
Benitec, 7/20/07 (see J. Dyk,
dissenting the majority limit[s] the
availability of DJ jurisdiction to
challenge invalid and unenforceable
patents by allowing patentees to moot
such controversies by dismissing the
original infringement action and
covenanting not to bring suit on
existing products, without any
showing that the controversy will not

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
recur in the future); Fort James,
6/22/05)

- Mere promise not to sue does not


moot the actual controversy created
by the promissors acts (Sandisk,
3/26/07)

- Patentees failure to provide (sign) a


covenant not to sue is one circumstance to
consider in evaluating the totality of the
circumstances - although a patentees
refusal to give assurances that it will not
enforce its patent is relevant to the DJ
jurisdiction determination, it is not sufficient
to create an actual controversy some
affirmative action(s) by the DJ defendant-
patentee also generally will be necessary
(Arkema, 2/5/13 (absence of the patentee
granting a covenant not to sue supported DJ
jurisdiction citing Already v. Nike (S.C.));
3M, 3/26/12 (may add additional support for
an existing controversy); Arris Group,
5/19/11(DJ jurisdiction was based on several
facts, including the patentee not granting a
covenant not to sue); Prasco, 8/15/08 (the
patentees failure to sign a covenant not to
sue did not show, under the totality of the
circumstances, an actual controversy
between the parties of sufficient immediacy
and reality to warrant DJ jurisdiction)

First-filed case rule

- First-filed case rule is not determinative of


which court hears the dispute the more
appropriate analysis is for the district court

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
to apply the convenience factors for a
transfer action under 28 USC 1404(a), as
the real underlying dispute is the
convenience and suitability of competing
forums (Powertech, 9/30/11 (DJ action was
dismissed improperly in favor of pending
action in Texas, where transfer factors did
not favor the Texas venue and DJ actions
relating to the same patent were already
pending in the N.D. of Cal.); Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10 (convenience factors did
not weigh against the district courts
dismissal of DJ action, and stating that
Micron did not hold that forum
convenience is the dominant consideration
relevant to the courts exercise of discretion
in every case); Micron Technology,
2/29/08 (where the parties (the accused
infringer filing a DJ action and the patentee
the next day filing an infringement action)
were really just contesting the location and
right to choose the forum of their inevitable
suit)

- First-filed case rule (when the accused


infringer files a DJ action in anticipation of
the patentee filing an infringement suit)
the first-filed case is favored unless it would
be unjust or inefficient to permit the first-
filed case to proceed to judgment district
court has discretion, applying principles of
comity (Merial, 5/31/12 (affirming denial of
motion to stay contempt proceedings in first
case in favor of a later DJ action alleging
noninfringement and invalidity of the same
patent); Innovative Therapies, 4/1/10
(infringement suits filed before the DJ
plaintiffs supplemental pleading were

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
favored, citing Electronics for Imaging);
Electronics for Imaging, 1/5/05)

- Customer suit exception


exception to the general rule that
favors the forum of the first-filed
action - a manufacturers action to
resolve patent infringement charges
against its customers receives
preferential treatment over a patent
owners earlier filed suit against the
customers (Spread Spectrum, 9/26/11
(rejecting the plaintiffs argument for
interlocutory review of stay order that
the district courts order resulted from
an erroneous application of the
customer suit exception, including
that no manufacturer DJ action was
involved in the case); Tegic
Communications, 8/10/06); See also
CSIRO, 10/23/08 (nonprecedential
customer suit doctrine under
which litigation against or brought by
the manufacturer of infringing goods
takes precedence over a suit by the
patent owner against the
manufacturers customers)

Past and future infringement

- Past infringement - jurisdiction can be based


on past infringement (just as a patentee can
bring a claim for past damages within 6
years) (Sierra Applied Sciences, 4/13/04)

- Patentee against a future infringer two


factors considered (Metabolite Labs, 6/8/04)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Licensing of patents Medimmune v. Genentech (S.C.)

- [Old rule] License = no actual


controversy under the DJ Act, 28 USC
2201(a), if a licensee in good standing - the
licensee has no reasonable apprehension of
suit absent a material breach of the license,
e.g., stop paying royalties a licensee in
good standing thus has no standing to sue
for DJ of patent invalidity, and a court has
no DJ jurisdiction - Gen-Probe (Pactiv,
6/5/06 (DJ plaintiff in breach of license
agreement = jurisdiction); Medimmune,
10/18/05 [On 1/9/07, the U.S. Supreme
Court reversed the CAFCs decision in
Medimmune, resolving the issue of
whether Article IIIs limitation of federal
courts jurisdiction to Cases and
Controversies, as reflected in the
actual controversy requirement of the
Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 USC
2201(a), requires a patent licensee to
terminate or be in breach of its license
agreement (i.e., refuse to pay royalties)
before it can seek a DJ action that the
underlying patent is invalid,
unenforceable, or not infringed; the
Supreme Court held, 8-1 (Justice
Thomas, dissenting), that the licensee
(Medimmune) was not required, insofar
as Article III is concerned, to break or
terminate the license agreement before
seeking a DJ action in federal court that
the underlying patent is invalid,
unenforceable, or not infringed; the
Court explained that the CAFCs rule

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
that the licensee must first refuse to pay
royalties, and thus risk treble damages
[as well as attorneys fees] and the loss of
80 percent of its business [because of an
injunction], before seeking a declaration
of its actively contested legal rights finds
no support in Article III; the Court
reasoned that the threat-eliminating
behavior (i.e., the payment of royalties
under protest) was effectively coerced
by the possibility of treble damages and
an injunction in the absence of payment,
citing Altvater v. Freeman, 319 U.S. 359
(1943) (which held that a licensees failure
to cease payment of royalties did not
render non-justiciable a dispute over the
validity of the patent]; Medimmune,
6/1/05; Metabolite Labs, 6/8/04; Gen-Probe,
3/5/04)

- Licensee need not repudiate license


agreement by refusing to pay royalties
in order to have standing to declare a
patent invalid, unenforceable, or not
infringed MedImmune (S.C.)
(Cummins, 12/5/12 (based on
Medimmune (S.C.), rejecting
argument for no res judicata based on
prior judgment in patent license
dispute case because the district court
lacked jurisdiction to adjudge the
invalidity and unenforceability of the
patents where the appellant had
continued making royalty payments);
Powertech, 9/30/11 (DJ plaintiff-
licensee under MedImmune (S.C.) was
not required to repudiate its license
agreement to define its rights and

175
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
obligations under its contract with the
patentee))

- Distinguished from Lear v. Adkins


(S.C.) = no licensee estoppel when
the DJ plaintiff is not a defaulting
licensee (Medimmune, 10/18/05)

- [Old rule] License = covenant not to


sue or disturb the licensees activities
deprives the court of DJ jurisdiction
(Medimmune, 6/1/05; Metabolite
Labs, 6/8/04)

- Offer of license conduct prior to the


existence of a license an affirmative act by
the patentee is required for DJ jurisdiction -
Sandisk (3M, 3/26/12 (DJ jurisdiction based
on the patentees license offer and that a
specific product may infringe); Innovative
Therapies, 4/1/10 (citing Sandisk rule, where
the patentees prior suits based on the patent
did not create DJ jurisdiction); Hewlett-
Packard, 12/4/09 (Medimmune (S.C.)
certainly lowered the bar for there being
DJ jurisdiction in the licensor-licensee
context; patent owner took the affirmative
step of twice contacting the DJ plaintiff
directly, and implicitly asserted its patent
rights against a specific product line of the
plaintiff); Sony Electronics, 8/3/07; Sandisk,
3/26/07, see also J. Bryson, concurring
virtually any invitation to take a paid license
would give rise to an Article III case or
controversy)

- Art. III jurisdiction may be met where


the patentee takes a position that puts

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
the DJ plaintiff in the position of
either pursuing arguably illegal
behavior or abandoning that which he
claims a right to do (Arkema, 2/5/13;
Adenta, 9/19/07 (DJ defendant
indicated an intent to assert rights
under the patent if the DJ plaintiff
failed to pay royalties under the
license agreement created
substantial controversy and DJ
jurisdiction; *the CAFC also relied on
the fact that the DJ plaintiff had
stopped paying the royalties, citing
Medimmune (S.C.))); the outer
boundaries of DJ jurisdiction depend
on the application of the principles of
DJ jurisdiction (from Medimmune
(S.C.)) to the facts and circumstances
of each case (Sony Electronics, 8/3/07
(license offers; negotiations; detailed
claims and prior art, validity analyses
(i.e., charts); damages requests);
Sandisk, 3/26/07)

- Holding of Sandisk Article III


jurisdiction may be met where the
patentee takes a position that puts the
DJ plaintiff in the position of either
pursuing arguably illegal behavior or
abandoning that which he claims a
right to do; where a patentee asserts
rights under a patent based on certain
identified ongoing or planned activity
of another party, and where that party
contends that it has the right to engage
in the accused activity without
license, an Art. III case or controversy
will arise and the party need not risk

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
an infringement suit by engaging in
the identified activity (i.e., need not
bet the farm, so to speak) before
seeking a declaration of its legal
rights - Sandisk (Arkema, 2/5/13;
Hewlett-Packard, 12/4/09 (DJ
jurisdiction over a patent holding
company that sent a letter referring to
the relevance of the patent to a
specific product line of the DJ
plaintiff, and gave a two-week
deadline for response, and the patent
owner declined to agree to a standstill
period to discuss the patent);
Revolution Eyewear, 2/13/09; Adenta,
9/19/07; Sony Electronics, 8/3/07;
Benitec, 7/20/07; Sandisk, 3/26/07)

- A party to licensing
negotiations is within its rights
to terminate negotiations when
they appear unproductive; thus,
a patentees continued
willingness to engage in
licensing negotiations does not
prevent a plaintiff from
maintaining a DJ action, i.e.,
one party is not required to
negotiate with the other (Sony
Electronics, 8/3/07; Sandisk,
3/26/07)

- Settlement, licensing negotiations

- Confidentiality agreements to
avoid the risk of a DJ action
(3M, 3/26/12 (n.2); Hewlett-
Packard, 12/4/09 (DJ

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
jurisdiction where the patent
owner failed to propose a
confidentiality agreement and
failed to agree to a standstill
period to discuss the patent);
Sandisk, 3/26/07, see also J.
Bryson, concurring)

- Filing a DJ action as a tactical


measure to improve the
plaintiffs bargaining position
in ongoing license negotiations,
which is not a purpose that the
DJ Act was designed to deserve
EMC (Sony Electronics,
8/3/07)

- Affirmative evidence
necessary (Hewlett-
Packard, 12/4/09 (DJ
jurisdiction where patent
rights were implicitly
asserted in letter); Sony
Electronics, 8/3/07)

- FRE 408 expressly relates to


evidence of efforts toward
compromising or attempting to
compromise a claim in
litigation and does not prevent
a party from relying on
licensing discussions and an
infringement study to support
its claims for DJ (Sandisk,
3/26/07)

Supplemental jurisdiction

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Generally

- Supplemental jurisdiction 28 USC 1367


provides the statutory authority for district courts
to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over certain
claims outside their original jurisdiction (Dow
Jones, 5/28/10 (each claim over which a district
court exercises supplemental jurisdiction must
have standing on its own); HIF Bio, 3/31/10; HIF
Bio, 11/13/07 [reversed by S.C. and remanded];
Voda, 2/1/07 (no jurisdiction in U.S. courts for
infringement of foreign patent claims); Highway
Equipment, 11/21/06; Nippon Telephone, 7/13/05;
Air Turbine Tech., 6/7/05; On-Line Technologies,
10/13/04; Electronics, 8/18/03); See also Beriont,
8/6/13 (nonprecedential)

- Proper exercise of subject matter jurisdiction


pursuant to 1367 requires both the
presence of jurisdiction under subsection (a)
and an appropriate decision, i.e., use of the
district courts discretion, to exercise that
jurisdiction under subsection (c); CAFC
must evaluate: 1) whether 1367 authorizes
such supplemental jurisdiction, and 2)
whether the district courts exercise of such
supplemental jurisdiction was within its
1367(c) discretion (Voda, 2/1/07)

- Exercise of supplemental jurisdiction


is within the discretion of the district
court - 1367(c) (lists reasons that
district court may decline to exercise
supplemental jurisdiction); discretion
is not unfettered (Semiconductor
Energy Laboratory, 2/11/13; HIF Bio,
3/31/10 (district court abused
discretion in declining supplemental

180
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
jurisdiction and remanding complaint
to state court, where two causes of
action arose under Section 1338) [on
remand from S.C. after reversing
the CAFCs 2007 decision; see also
6/14/10 nonprecedential Order
amending portion of opinion]; HIF
Bio, 11/13/07 (number of state law
claims remanded to state court)
[reversed by S.C. and remanded];
Voda, 2/1/07); See also Beriont,
8/6/13 (nonprecedential);
Personalized Media, 8/23/12
(nonprecedential supplemental
jurisdiction properly declined where
related litigation pending in another
forum)

- Discretion is not whim, and


limiting discretion according to
legal standards helps promote
the basic principle of justice
that like cases should be
decided alike a page of
history is worth a volume of
logic eBay (S.C.) (Roberts,
C.J., concurring) (Voda,
2/1/07)

- 1356(a) indicates that


1367(c) constitutes an express
statutory exception to the
authorization of jurisdiction
granted by 1367(a) (Voda,
2/1/07)

- When deciding whether to decline


supplemental jurisdiction under

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
1367(c), a federal court should
consider and weigh in each case, and
at every stage of the litigation: 1)
comity (spirit of cooperation in which
a domestic tribunal approaches the
resolution of cases touching the laws
and interests of other sovereign
states), 2) judicial economy, 3)
convenience (e.g., forum non
conveniens), 4) fairness, and 5) other
exceptional circumstances Chicago
(S.C.) (Voda, 2/1/07 (foreign patent
infringement claims))

- Statutory requirement of 1367(a) that


claims be so related to claims in the action
within such original jurisdiction that they
form part of the same case or controversy
under Article III is Congresss codification
of the Supreme Courts principles of
pendent and ancillary jurisdiction by which
the federal courts original jurisdiction over
federal questions carries with it jurisdiction
over state law claims that derive from a
common nucleus of operative fact (Voda,
2/1/07)

- When federal patent claim is


dismissed for lack of standing, the
district court cannot exercise
supplemental jurisdiction over
surviving state-law claims because
there was never an Article III case or
controversy (Larson, 6/5/09)

State law claims

182
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Supplemental jurisdiction over state law claims
28 USC 1367 when district court has original
jurisdiction over a patent infringement claim, court
also can adjudicate state law claims district
courts discretion (Semiconductor Energy
Laboratory, 2/11/13 (no abuse of discretion in
declining to exercise supplemental jurisdiction
over remaining state law claims where after
correctly dismissing purported federal law claim
(based on assignor estoppel)); HIF Bio, 3/31/10;
HIF Bio, 11/13/07 (number of state law claims
remanded to state court) [reversed by S.C. and
remanded]; Highway Equipment, 11/21/06;
Crater, 9/7/05; Air Turbine Tech., 6/7/05; On-Line
Technologies, 10/13/04); See also Beriont, 8/6/13
(nonprecedential); Clark, 1/8/08 (nonprecedential
district court properly dismissed state law claims
without prejudice under section 1367(c) after
dismissing federal claims over which it had
original jurisdiction)

- Abstention doctrines when apply, district


courts may be obligated not to decide state
law claims, or stay their adjudications
(Voda, 2/1/07)

- Relatedness requirement state law claims


must be sufficiently related to federal
claim(s), on which original jurisdiction
based same case or controversy under
Art. III; state and federal claims must derive
from common nucleus of operative fact
such that they would ordinarily be expected
to be tried in one proceeding (Highway
Equipment, 11/21/06)

- Similar acts or same


instrumentality - Mars (supplemental

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
jurisdiction over claim alleging
infringement of foreign patent)
(Highway Equipment, 11/21/06)

- State law decisions are not binding on a


federal court unless rendered by the states
highest court (if none, federal court must
predict how highest court would rule); when
a federal court interprets state law, federal
court must look to the rulings of the highest
state court (Microstrategy, 11/17/05)

Infringement of foreign patents

- Supplemental jurisdiction over infringement


claims based on foreign patents Mars factors
(Voda, 2/1/07 (no jurisdiction in U.S. courts over
infringement of foreign patents))

- Abstention doctrines conditions under


which federal courts may decline
jurisdiction (Voda, 2/1/07)

- Act of state doctrine prevents U.S. courts


from inquiring into the validity of a foreign
patent grant (Voda, 2/1/07)

- Local action doctrine (Voda, 2/1/07)

- Treaties ratified by the U.S. shall be the


supreme law of the land (U.S. Const., Art.
VI, cl.2) an agreement among sovereign
powers (Voda, 2/1/07)

- Paris Convention, PCT, and TRIPS do


not contemplate or allow one

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
jurisdiction to adjudicate patents of
another (Voda, 2/1/07)

- Based on treaties ratified by U.S., a


district courts supplemental
jurisdiction over infringement of
foreign patents could undermine the
obligations of the U.S. under such
treaties, which therefore constitutes an
exceptional circumstance to decline
jurisdiction under 1367(c)(4) (Voda,
2/1/07)

Pendent appellate jurisdiction

- Pendent or ancillary appellate jurisdiction the


CAFC has power to exercise pendent appellate
jurisdiction over other issues in extraordinary
circumstances, when they are inextricably
intertwined with or necessary to ensure
meaningful review of a properly appealed
collateral order; discretionary, even if above
requirement met Swint (S.C.) (U. Utah, 8/19/13
(the CAFCs pendent jurisdiction was not needed
to consider Rule 19 (indispensable party) issue on
appeal, which was not waivable citing 1st Cir.
law); Orenshteyn, 7/26/12 (Order) (declining to
exercise jurisdiction over appeal of sanctions order
(in the form of attorney fees and costs) where
amount not yet decided applying Swint (S.C.)
tests and discussing Falana as the closest
controlling precedent, and distinguishing
Majorette Toys; see also J. Newman, dissenting
recognizing judicial efficiency and economy
considerations for pendent jurisdiction); Advanced
Fiber, 4/3/12 (requirements not met with respect to
appeal of denial of SJ of validity); Falana, 1/23/12

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(rejecting argument with respect to non-final
exceptional case finding and attorney fees award
where the amount of the award was not quantified
distinguishing Majorette Toys); Entegris,
6/13/07; Intel, 7/14/06); See also Aevoe, 4/26/13
(Order) (nonprecedential declining to exercise
pendent jurisdiction where there was no indication
that considering the issues in an appeal of
sanctions for violating a PI order would impact or
resolve the issues regarding the separate PI ruling
citing Entegris as a similar case)

Personal jurisdiction

Generally

- Pleading personal jurisdiction - alleging personal


jurisdiction generally, without asserting a specific
basis for the courts jurisdiction over defendant,
satisfies federal pleading standards (Merial,
5/31/12)

- Analysis of personal jurisdiction in federal court


begins with FRCP 4 (service of process on the
defendant(s)) FRCP 4(k)(1)(A) (apply the
applicable state long-arm statute and governing
principles from the forum state) and 4(k)(2) (three
requirements: 1) the plaintiffs claim arises under
federal law, 2) the defendant is not subject to
jurisdiction in any states courts of general
jurisdiction (negation requirement), and 3) the
exercise of jurisdiction comports with due process)
court entitled to consider Rule 4(k)(2) even
though not raised by the parties see also
Foreign defendants (Taurus IP, 8/9/13 (court of
the state in which the district court sits (Wisconsin)
needs to have jurisdiction over a non-consenting,
nonresident defendant (applying 7th Cir. law));

186
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Technology Patents, 10/17/12 (not addressing the
issue of personal jurisdiction over foreign
defendants where the CAFC was able to decide
issue on the merits see n.1 (exception to the rule
that a federal court generally may not rule on the
merits of a case without first determining that it
has jurisdiction over the subject matter and the
parties)); Merial, 5/31/12 (district court properly
applied Rule 4(k)(2) in entering a default judgment
and injunction, even though defendant would have
consented to jurisdiction in Illinois; see also J.
Schall, dissenting district court can always rely
on Rule 4(k)(2), and the plaintiff is not required to
show jurisdiction in an alternative forum proposed
by the defendant, since the defendants consent
waives personal jurisdiction); Touchcom, 8/3/09
(applying Rule 4(k)(2) on appeal in reversing the
district courts dismissal for lack of personal
jurisdiction, see also J. Prost, dissenting; the
CAFC left unanswered the question whether a
Rule 4(k)(1)(A) analysis must precede a Rule
4(k)(2) analysis); Synthes (USA), 4/17/09)

General vs. specific jurisdiction

- General jurisdiction higher burden required


(continuous and systematic general business
contacts with the forum state; e.g., the defendant
sells products, services in state; also, the cause of
action need not relate to the defendants contacts
for jurisdiction see Goodyear (S.C.) (2011) for
general jurisdiction over foreign subsidiary) vs.
specific jurisdiction (AFTG-TG, 8/24/12; Grober,
7/30/12; Radio Systems, 4/25/11; Nuance,
11/12/10 (specific jurisdiction over a foreign
defendant); Touchcom, 8/3/09 (district court had
specific jurisdiction over Canadian defendants in a

187
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
legal malpractice claim based on the defendants
filing of an application at the U.S. PTO; see also J.
Prost, dissenting); Autogenomics, 5/18/09 (no
jurisdiction over a foreign DJ defendant-patentee);
Synthes (USA), 4/17/09 (specific jurisdiction
only); Avocent, 12/16/08 (**extensively discusses
personal jurisdiction over a DJ defendant-patentee,
and why there was no personal jurisdiction over
such defendant here; see also J. Newman,
dissenting); Campbell, 9/18/08 (twelve sales over
eight years in forum state, and website (not
directed to customers, and no sales made, in
forum), not enough for general jurisdiction);
Breckenridge Pharmaceutical, 4/7/06; Trintec
Indus., 1/19/05; Electronics, 8/18/03); See also
Marcinkowska, 8/20/09 (nonprecedential)

General jurisdiction

- Sporadic and insubstantial contacts with the


forum state are not sufficient to establish
general jurisdiction (Grober, 7/30/12 (no
general jurisdiction based on presence at
trade shows unrelated to the accused device,
or mention on website or advertisement in
the state); Autogenomics, 5/18/09 (classic
case); Campbell, 9/18/08 (classic case
thereof))

Specific jurisdiction

- Specific jurisdiction over the defendant if


the cause of action arises out of or relates
to the defendants in-state activity Burger
King (S.C.) (AFTG-TG, 8/24/12; Grober,
7/30/12; Nuance, 11/12/10; Autogenomics,

188
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
5/18/09; Synthes (USA), 4/17/09; Avocent,
12/16/08; Breckenridge Pharmaceutical,
4/7/06)

- Specific jurisdiction over non-consenting,


out-of-state defendant 2-part inquiry: 1)
does jurisdiction exist under state long-arm
statute, i.e., does the long-arm statute permit
service of process on the defendant under
the circumstances of the case? (FRCP 4(e),
4(k)(1)(A)), and if so, 2) would the courts
exercise of jurisdiction satisfy due process
requirements (i.e., the nonresident defendant
must have sufficient minimum contacts
such that the maintenance of the suit does
not offend traditional notions of fair play
and substantial justice; purposeful
availment of privilege of conducting
activities in state)?; sometimes, #1
collapses into #2 (AFTG-TG (parts
collapsed under Wyoming long-arm statute),
8/24/12; Grober, 7/30/12 (parts collapsed
together under California law); Radio
Systems, 4/25/11 (Tennessees long-arm
statute coterminous with due process
limitations); Nuance, 11/12/10; Patent
Rights Protection Group, 5/10/10
(jurisdiction in Nevada was not
unreasonable, where the defendants attended
trade shows in the state); Touchcom, 8/3/09
(collapsed together under Virginia long-arm
statute); Autogenomics, 5/18/09 (collapsed
together under California long-arm statute);
Avocent, 12/16/08 (collapsed together under
Alabama long-arm statute); **Campbell,
9/18/08 (extensively addresses the
requirements for specific jurisdiction,
including the three Burger King (S.C.)

189
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
factors for determining whether the
defendant has purposely established
minimum contacts with the forum state,
and whether the assertion of personal
jurisdiction would comport with fair play
and substantial justice; see also below)
Medical Solutions, 9/9/08 (second part not
considered where the plaintiff failed to make
out a prima facie showing of jurisdiction
under the DC long-arm statute); Pennington
Seed, 8/9/06; Breckenridge Pharmaceutical,
4/7/06; Playtex, 3/7/05; Trintec Indus.,
1/19/05; Electronics, 8/18/03); See also
Marcinkowska, 8/20/09 (nonprecedential
The constitutional test for personal
jurisdiction has two related components: the
minimum contacts inquiry and the fairness
inquiry)

- Long arm statutes

- Federal long-arm statute


FRCP 4(k)(2) (Synthes (USA),
4/17/09)

- Alabama long-arm statute


(Avocent, 12/16/08)

- California long-arm statute


(Grober, 7/30/12; Nuance,
11/12/10; Autogenomics,
5/18/09)

- Connecticut long-arm statute


(On-Line Technologies,
10/13/04)

190
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Delaware long-arm statute
(Commissariat a lenergie
atomique, 1/19/05)

- District of Columbia long-arm


statute (Medical Solutions,
9/9/08; Trintec Indus., 1/19/05)

- Florida long-arm statute


(Breckenridge Pharmaceutical,
4/7/06)

- Missouri long-arm statute


(Pennington Seed, 8/9/06)

- Nevada long-arm statute


(Patent Rights Protection
Group, 5/10/10)

- South Carolina long-arm statute


(Marcinkowska, 8/20/09
(nonprecedential))

- Tennessee long-arm statute


(Radio Systems, 4/25/11)

- Virginia long-arm statute


(Touchcom, 8/3/09)

- Washington long-arm statute


(Campbell, 9/18/08 (two-part
inquiry collapses into one))

- Wyoming long-arm statute


(AFTG-TG, 8/24/12)

- Due process limitations minimum


contacts, stream of commerce

191
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
theory Worldwide Volkswagon
(S.C.), Asahi (S.C.), J. McIntyre (S.C.)
(2011) (foreign defendant), Beverly
Hills Fan (AFTG-TG, 8/24/12
(affirming no jurisdiction over
defendants in Wyoming where
insufficient contacts under the
stream of commerce theory, based
on the courts review of the
allegations in the complaint (which
were nothing more than bare
formulaic accusation); contains
extensive discussion of the Supreme
Courts split in Asahi regarding the
scope of the stream of commerce
theory, and how a recent case
McIntyre (S.C.) did not resolve the
split and change the law; the CAFC
thus followed its own precedent on
the stream of commerce theory,
Beverly Hills Fan Co.; see also J.
Rader, concurring proposing a new
something more rule when applying
the stream of commerce theory,
based on the Supreme Court
precedent ); Nuance, 11/12/10
(jurisdiction based on an established
distribution channel, citing Beverly
Hills Fan); Touchcom, 8/3/09
(purposefully establishing minimum
contacts in the forum state is the
constitutional touchstone of the due
process inquiry Burger King (S.C.));
Synthes (USA), 4/17/09 (foreign
defendant shown to have minimum
contacts with the United States as a
whole for jurisdiction under FRCP
4(k)(2)); Avocent, 12/16/08 (remains

192
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
unclear whether contacts based solely
on the stream of commerce may be
sufficient to establish general
jurisdiction); Campbell, 9/18/08;
Commissariat a lenergie atomique,
1/19/05)

- CAFC applies a three part test


in determining whether exercise
of personal jurisdiction satisfies
due process requirements,
whether: 1) the defendant
purposefully directed its
activities at residents of the
forum state, 2) the claim arises
out of or relates to those
activities (#1 and #2 correspond
with the minimum contacts
prong of Intl Shoe (S.C.)), and,
if #1 and #2 are satisfied
(plaintiffs burden), 3) the
assertion of personal
jurisdiction is reasonable and
fair, i.e., would comport with
fair play and substantial
justice (burden shift to
defendant) Akro, Coyle,
Burger King (S.C.), Intl Shoe
(S.C.) (AFTG-TG, 8/24/12;
Grober, 7/30/12 (no specific
jurisdiction over defendant in
California based on
advertisement in national trade
publication, where was not
shown that the state was a
target market for the
defendant); Radio Systems,
4/25/11; Nuance, 11/12/10

193
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(specific jurisdiction over a
foreign defendant under the
three prongs); Patent Rights
Protection Group, 5/10/10;
Touchcom, 8/3/09 (Canadian
defendants who as non-resident
U.S. patent agents filed and
prosecuted an application at the
U.S. PTO did not possess the
necessary minimum contacts
with Virginia, and thus were
not subject to jurisdiction in
federal court in Virginia under
a FRCP 4(k)(1)(A) analysis, but
did possess minimum contacts
with the U.S. as a whole for the
court to have jurisdiction under
FRCP 4(k)(2); see also J. Prost,
dissenting); Autogenomics,
5/18/09 (no specific jurisdiction
over a foreign defendant);
Synthes (USA), 4/17/09
(district court had specific
jurisdiction over a foreign
defendant under FRCP 4(k)(2));
Avocent, 12/16/08 (listing the
five Burger King factors; also,
the forseeability critical to
the due process analysis is that
the defendants conduct and
connection with the forum state
are such that he should
reasonably anticipate being
haled into court there Burger
King (S.C.)); Campbell, 9/18/08
(listing the five factors bearing
on the reasonableness inquiry
(#3 above) under the Burger

194
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
King (S.C.) standard);
Pennington Seed, 8/9/06); FOR
THE THIRD PRONG, the
burden of proof is on the
defendant, who must present a
compelling case that the
presence of some other
considerations would render
jurisdiction unreasonable (i.e.,
the exercise of jurisdiction
would offend principles of fair
play and substantial justice)
under the 5-factor Burger King
(S.C.) test (Nuance, 11/12/10;
Patent Rights Protection Group,
5/10/10; Touchcom, 8/3/09
(contains a detailed analysis of
the 5-factor test, as applied to
FRCP 4(k)(2); see also J. Prost,
dissenting, based on analysis of
the five factors, and concluding
that exercising jurisdiction
would be unreasonable);
Synthes (USA), 4/17/09
(contains a detailed analysis of
the 5-factor test, as applied to
the so-called federal long arm
statute FRCP 4(k)(2));
Campbell, 9/18/08;
Breckenridge Pharmaceutical,
4/7/06)

- Five factors may render


jurisdiction unreasonable
despite the presence of
minimum contacts
Burger King (S.C.)
(Touchcom, 8/3/09)

195
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Each defendants contacts with
the forum state must be
assessed individually Calder
(S.C.) (Avocent, 12/16/08)

- Infringement letter sent into the


forum state without more, not
sufficient under the reasonable
and fair prong (#3) to confer
personal jurisdiction in the
forum state Red Wing Shoe;
other activities, i.e., sufficient
additional conduct, beyond
merely informing others of its
patent rights, by the patentee in
the forum state are required for
jurisdiction (Radio Systems,
4/25/11; Autogenomics,
5/18/09; Avocent, 12/16/08
(extensively addresses issue,
that there must be other
activities directed at the forum
and related to the cause of
action besides the threatening
infringement letters Silent
Drive); Campbell, 9/18/08
(citing several examples of
other activities that were
sufficient to confer jurisdiction,
e.g., licensing the patent in the
forum state, in concluding that
the patentees attempts at
extra-judicial patent
enforcement in the forum state
went beyond simply informing
the accused infringer, DJ

196
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
plaintiff of the patentees
allegations of infringement))

- DJ defendant-patentees
commercial activities (e.g.,
sales and patent licensing (not
through an attorney)) in the
forum state do not necessarily
provide ground for personal
jurisdiction; rather, need patent
enforcement or defense efforts
in the forum (Radio Systems,
4/25/11 (following Avocent,
which did not distinguish
between commercialization
efforts directed generally at
residents of the forum state and
efforts directed specifically at
the DJ plaintiff, which focused
on creating a cooperative
business arrangement with the
DJ plaintiff to market the
patentees product);
Autogenomics, 5/18/09 (citing
Avocent); Avocent, 12/16/08
(extensively addresses issue;
see also J. Newman,
dissenting))

- Minimum contacts must be


alleged sufficiently in the
complaint to establish personal
jurisdiction (AFTG-TG,
8/24/12 (insufficient contacts
alleged under the stream of
commerce theory); Avocent,
12/16/08; Pennington Seed,
8/9/06)

197
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
CAFC law applies

- CAFC (patents) vs. regional circuit law; CAFC


law regarding compliance with federal due process
is applied to personal jurisdiction in patent cases
(Nuance, 11/12/10; Patent Rights Protection
Group, 5/10/10; Touchcom, 8/3/09; Synthes
(USA), 4/17/09; Avocent, 12/16/08; Medical
Solutions, 9/9/08 (the law of the forum governs the
first inquiry, i.e., the long arm statute); Pennington
Seed, 8/9/06; Breckenridge Pharmaceutical,
4/7/06; Rates Technology, 2/17/05; Electronics,
8/18/03)

- Personal jurisdictional issues in patent


infringement cases are reviewed under
CAFC law, not regional law (Grober,
7/30/12; Nuance, 11/12/10; Autogenomics,
5/18/09; Synthes (USA), 4/17/09)

- Defer to the interpretation of a states


long-arm statute given by the states
highest court, particularly whether or
not the statute is intended to reach the
limit of federal due process
(Touchcom, 8/3/09)

- Declaratory action for non-infringement is


intimately related to patent law and thus
governed by CAFC law regarding due
process (Autogenomics, 5/18/09; Avocent,
12/16/08; Breckenridge Pharmaceutical,
4/7/06)

- Suit involving both patent and non-patent


claims - CAFC law regarding due process

198
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
applies to question of personal jurisdiction
on non-patent claims if the resolution of the
patent infringement issue will be a
significant factor in determining liability
under the non-patent claims, vs. regional
circuit law applied when non-patent claims
not intimately linked to patent law (Taurus
IP, 8/9/13 (non-patent claims (7th Cir.));
Avocent, 12/16/08; Breckenridge
Pharmaceutical, 4/7/06)

Other issues

Actions of exclusive licensee

- Jurisdiction over patent owner when its exclusive


licensee (as opposed to a non-exclusive licensee) is
selling patented product in the state
(Autogenomics, 5/18/09 (rejecting argument
concerning an alleged exclusive licensee in the
forum state, quoting Avocent); Avocent, 12/16/08
(extensively addresses issue relating to jurisdiction
over the defendant-patentee based on the
patentees contractual undertaking with the
licensee which may impose certain obligations to
enforce the patent against infringers);
Breckenridge Pharmaceutical, 4/7/06)

- Mere receipt by patent owner of royalty


income from licensee for sales in the forum
state is an insufficient ground for personal
jurisdiction; instead, look to the defendants
relationship with the licensee to determine
the extent of defendants forum state
contacts, which requires examination of the
license agreement e.g., whether license
agreement creates continuing obligations
for the defendant in the forum state beyond

199
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
receipt of royalty income (Avocent,
12/16/08; Breckenridge Pharmaceutical,
4/7/06)

Cease and desist letters, offers of license

- Cease and desist letters, or attempts to license


patent patent owner may, without more, send
cease and desist letters to a suspected infringer, or
its customers, without being subjected to personal
jurisdiction (i.e., as the defendant in a DJ action for
noninfringement, invalidity) in the suspected
infringers home state Akro, Red Wing Shoe
(Radio Systems, 4/25/11; Autogenomics, 5/18/09
(email and in-person negotiations analogized to
cease and desist letters); Avocent, 12/16/08;
Campbell, 9/18/08; Breckenridge Pharmaceutical,
4/7/06)

- Other activities -- beyond sending an


infringement letter or otherwise
communicating infringement allegations --
by the patentee are required in the forum
state; the patentee must be engaged in
sufficient additional conduct in the forum
state, beyond merely informing others of its
patent rights, i.e., extra-judicial enforcement
efforts (Radio Systems, 4/25/11 (no
jurisdiction conferred based on the patentee
contacting the PTO regarding the DJ
plaintiffs allowed patent application);
Autogenomics, 5/18/09 (no specific
jurisdiction conferred where the plaintiff
failed to allege sufficient activities by the DJ
defendant-patentee relating to the validity
and enforcement of the patent in addition to
the cease-and-desist communications);

200
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Avocent, 12/16/08; Campbell, 9/18/08
(jurisdiction conferred based on the
patentees other activities directed at the DJ
plaintiff and its customers at a trade show in
the forum state; also cited examples where
jurisdiction found based on other activities,
e.g., licensing the patent in the forum state,
enlisting a third party to take action against
the DJ plaintiff))

- Enforcement activities taking place


outside the forum state do not give
rise to personal jurisdiction in the
forum Avocent (Radio Systems,
4/25/11)

Contracts

- Contracts e.g. CDAs (Radio Systems, 4/25/11


(forum selection clause of CDA did not confer
jurisdiction, where the CDA did not pertain to the
patent in suit or the potentially infringing device,
since neither of which were confidential
information); Autogenomics, 5/18/09
(defendants agreement with a company in the
forum state did not confer jurisdiction, where it
neither involved the patent in suit nor was
analogous to the grant of a patent license);
Electronics, 8/18/03)

Corporate officers

- Fiduciary shield doctrine buffers corporate officers


from personal jurisdiction when their official
duties are their only contact with a forum state

201
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Nelson (S.C.) (Grober, 7/30/12 (applying 9th Cir.
law))

- Alter ego doctrine exception to the presumed


non-liability of a shareholder, director, or officer
of a corporate entity (Taurus IP, 8/9/13 (applying
the doctrine for jurisdiction over the controlling
entity, and in reverse to reach the assets of the
controlled entity, rather than the controlling entity
applying 7th Cir. and Wisconsin law, and Texas
law))

Employers vs. employees

- Status as employees does not insulate them from


jurisdiction, as each defendants contacts with the
forum state must be assessed individually Calder
(S.C.) (Campbell, 9/18/08 (likewise rejecting the
defendants argument for dismissal for being an
indispensable party as the patent owner))

Foreign defendants

- Foreign defendant-patentee in a DJ action


(Touchcom, 8/3/09 (n.3: citing 35 USC 293);
Autogenomics, 5/18/09 (no jurisdiction; see also J.
Newman, dissenting, referring to the CAFC again
restricting U.S. parties from access to the courts
when the patent is owned by a foreign entity,
despite the DJ defendants contacts and activities
in the forum state); Avocent, 12/16/08)

- Foreign defendant not subject to jurisdiction in any


state personal jurisdiction under FRCP 4(k)(2)
(federal long-arm statute) allows a district
court to exercise personal jurisdiction over a

202
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
defendant if: (1) the plaintiffs claim arises under
federal law, (2) the defendant is not subject to
jurisdiction in any states courts of general
jurisdiction (negation requirement), and (3) the
exercise of jurisdiction comports with due process
(Technology Patents, 10/17/12 (unnecessary to
decide personal jurisdiction over foreign phone
carriers, where the CAFC was able to decide issue
on the merits see n.1); Merial, 5/31/12; Bradford,
4/29/10 (addressing Touchcom and the 7th Cir.
approach applying the rule when the defendant
refuses to identify a state where suit is possible);
Touchcom, 8/3/09 (district court in Virginia had
personal jurisdiction over Canadian defendants
who as non-resident U.S. patent agents filed and
prosecuted an application at the U.S. PTO; see also
J. Prost, dissenting); Synthes (USA), 4/17/09
(district court had personal jurisdiction over a
foreign defendant under Rule 4(k)(2) where the
defendant admitted that it was not subject to
personal jurisdiction in any forum in the United
States, and the CAFC concluded that its three-part
test was satisfied for establishing minimum
contacts to comport with due process))

- Second requirement which party bears the


BOP? - the CAFC adopts the Seventh
Circuits approach that if the defendant
contends that he cannot be sued in the forum
state and refuses to identify any other where
suit is possible, then the federal court is
entitled to use Rule 4(k)(2) (Merial, 5/31/12;
Touchcom, 8/3/09 (remanding to determine
whether the defendants were subject to
personal jurisdiction in another state, or else
the plaintiff met its burden under Rule
4(k)(2))

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Third requirement, the due process analysis,
contemplates a defendants (minimum)
contacts with the United States as a whole,
as opposed to the state in which the district
court sits (Bradford, 4/29/10; Touchcom,
8/3/09; Synthes (USA), 4/17/09)

- Due process analysis same as the


due process analysis (i.e., three-part
test, plus the five Burger King (S.C.)
factors for the third prong) for
specific jurisdiction under Rule
4(k)(1)(A), except consider the
defendants contacts with the entire
United States (Touchcom, 8/3/09 (due
process was satisfied where legal
malpractice claims arose from the
defendants activities before a U.S.
agency, the PTO; see also J. Prost,
dissenting); See General vs. specific
jurisdiction

- Personal jurisdiction requirement which prevents


federal courts from exercising authority over
defendants without sufficient contacts with the
United States - is independent of the
extraterritorial reach of a federal statute the
personal jurisdiction requirement is an important
limitation on the jurisdiction of federal courts over
purely extraterritorial activity that is independent
of the extraterritorial reach of a federal statute or
the courts subject matter jurisdiction (Litecubes,
4/28/08 n.10 (personal jurisdiction over the
defendant was not disputed))

Jurisdictional discovery

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Jurisdictional discovery (Nuance, 11/12/10
(district court abused its discretion by dismissing
case after de facto denial of discovery, applying 9th
Cir. law); Patent Rights Protection Group, 5/10/10
(district court abused discretion where prejudice
shown by the denial of discovery); Autogenomics,
5/18/09 (detailing the showing required to
overcome a denial of jurisdictional discovery,
applying 9th Cir. law; no abuse of discretion in
denying request where no formal motion was made
-- dont make motion in the opposition to the
defendants motion to dismiss!); Synthes (USA),
4/17/09 (discovery relating to a foreign
defendants contacts with the United States for
purposes of FRCP 4(k)(2)); Medical Solutions,
9/9/08 (denied in part because the plaintiff failed to
make out a prima facie showing of jurisdiction
based on its complaint and response to the
defendants motion to dismiss); Breckenridge
Pharmaceutical, 4/7/06; Trintec Indus., 1/19/05;
Commissariat a lenergie atomique, 1/19/05)

- Relevance of discovery in patent cases


apply CAFC law (Autogenomics, 5/18/09
(n.2: relevance could not be evaluated
because no formal motion was made, or the
reasons otherwise that discovery was needed
were not provided to the district court);
Commissariat a lenergie atomique, 1/19/05)

Motion to dismiss FRCP 12(b)(2)

- Motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction


- FRCP 12(b)(2) (Autogenomics, 5/18/09; Synthes
(USA), 4/17/09; Avocent, 12/16/08; Medical
Solutions, 9/9/08; Rates Technology, 2/17/05;

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Trintec Indus., 1/19/05; Commissariat a lenergie
atomique, 1/19/05)

- Plaintiff need only make a prima facie case


of jurisdiction over the defendant to defeat a
motion to dismiss (when no evidentiary
hearing is conducted) (AFTG-TG, 8/24/12;
Grober, 7/30/12; Nuance, 11/12/10;
Touchcom, 8/3/09 (because motion to
dismiss decided without conducting a
hearing); Autogenomics, 5/18/09 (because
the parties had not conducted discovery);
Synthes (USA), 4/17/09 (in the absence of
an evidentiary hearing); Avocent, 12/16/08;
Campbell, 9/18/08 (hearsay objections to the
plaintiffs affidavits not addressed as the
only issue was whether the uncontroverted
facts alleged by the plaintiff in its affidavits
and complaint supported a prima facie
showing that the district court has personal
jurisdiction over the defendants; different
when the district court conducts an
evidentiary hearing, where the plaintiff must
prove the district courts jurisdiction over
the defendant by a preponderance of the
evidence); Medical Solutions, 9/9/08 (no
prima facie case of use of accused device
at trade show shown; prima facie showing
also necessary to be permitted to conduct
jurisdictional discovery); Trintec Indus.,
1/19/05)

- Pleadings and affidavits are construed


in the light most favorable to the
nonmovant, plaintiff Elecs. for
Imaging (Nuance, 11/12/10;
Touchcom, 8/3/09 (in evaluating
whether the plaintiff met its burden,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
the CAFC accepts the uncontroverted
allegations in the complaint as true
and resolves any factual conflicts in
the plaintiffs favor); the plaintiff,
however, is entitled to only those
inferences that are reasonable
Avocent, Pennington Seed
(Autogenomics, 5/18/09)

- Hearsay evidence may be considered in


connection with a motion to dismiss for lack
of personal jurisdiction Akro, Beverly Hills
Fan (Campbell, 9/18/08 (n.1))

Suing the correct corporate entity

- Suing correct corporate entity one that infringed


patent - e.g., subsidiary (Rates Technology,
2/17/05)

- Mere department of larger company


(Rates Technology, 2/17/05)

Third party

- Third party post-judgment to decide partys


liability (Cygnus, 9/30/03)

Waiver FRCP 12(h)(1)

- Waiver of personal jurisdiction, in event not


challenged FRCP 12(h)(1)

- Filing of a counterclaim (compulsory or


permissive) cannot waive partys objections

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
to personal jurisdiction, as long a FRCP
12(h)(1) requirements are met (Rates
Technology, 2/17/05)

Websites

- Jurisdiction based on websites cases differ


(Campbell, 9/18/08 (no general jurisdiction when
website not directed to customers in the forum
state); Trintec Indus., 1/19/05)

Venue

- Venue for a corporation, venue exists if personal


jurisdiction over the corporation, i.e., venue statute
28 USC 1391(c) (Trintec Indus., 1/19/05)

- Transfer of venue See DISTRICT COURT


PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE Transfer of
venue 28 USC 1404(a) and 1631

Service of process

- Service of process on a foreign defendant FRCP


4(f) (Merial, 5/31/12 (issue of insufficient service
waived where raised for the first time on appeal);
Nuance, 11/12/10 (addressing service of process
on a foreign defendant, including substitute service
and under the Hague Service Convention))

- Waiver of defense of improper service of


process, under Rule 12 (Nuance, 11/12/10)

B. APPELLATE/DISTRICT COURT REVIEW

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Legislation - generally

- Legislation is presumed not to be retroactive, and


the legal effect of conduct should ordinarily be
assessed under the law that existed when the
conduct took place (Voda, 8/18/08 (n.10: The
principle that statutes operate only prospectively,
while judicial decisions operate retrospectively, is
familiar to every law student . . . Rivers (S.C.));
Optivus Tech., 11/16/06)

- Retroactive application of legislation, and


constitutionality thereof Act must clearly
indicate its retroactive application, and is it
justified by a rational legislative purpose?
Carlton (S.C.) (Presidio Components,
12/19/12 (AIA amendments to Section
292(a) applied to pending appeals looking
to the amendment language and legislative
history); Brooks, 12/13/12 (discussing
standard applied - in the context of
amendment under the AIA to Section 292(b)
retroactively eliminating qui tam false
marking suits))

- Whether a statute creates a private contract


or vested rights between the Government
and a party look to the language of the
statute (Brooks, 12/13/12)

- Presumption against extraterritoriality


longstanding principle of American law that
legislation of Congress, unless a contrary intent
appears, is meant to apply only within the
territorial jurisdiction of the United States EEOC
(S.C.) (Tianrui Group, 10/11/11 (interpreting
Section 337 to prohibit the importation of goods
made by misappropriating trade secrets in China))

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Congress/patent-related legislation

- Great deference is given to Congresss policy


determinations in deciding whether legislation is
permissible under the Patent Clause of the
Constitution (Art. 1, 8, cl. 8 That Congress
shall have the power . . . [t]o promote the progress
of science and useful arts, by securing for limited
times to authors and inventors the exclusive right
to their respective writings and discoveries)
(Brooks, 12/13/12 (holding that Congresss
amendment to Section 292(b) under the AIA
retroactively eliminating qui tam false marking
suits was constitutional, determining that it was a
rational means of pursuing a legitimate legislative
purpose, stating that the CAFCs judicial review is
limited to determining whether Congresss actions
were a rational exercise of the legislative authority
conferred by the Patent Clause, to which the court
defers substantially to Congress); In re Ferguson,
3/6/09 (n.7: stating not the role of courts to make
(the concurrences) arguments based on policy and
philosophical grounds, but rather is the
responsibility of Congress to consider amending
the patent laws as necessary to recognize and allow
for innovation in the future); Figueroa, 10/11/06)

- PTO fees Congress may constitutionally


impose patent fees in amounts more than
what is used to fund PTO (Figueroa,
10/11/06)

Treaties

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Treaties not self-implementing, and thus
domestic implementing legislation is required (In
re Rath, 3/24/05 (Paris Convention, an executory
treaty, is not a self-executing treaty and requires
congressional implementation))

Agency/PTO decisions/regulations

Agency/PTO decisions

Administrative deference APA, Zurko (S.C.),


Chenery doctrine

- Administrative deference under Zurko


appellate (or district court) review of an
administrative decision is limited to the agency
record, i.e., the grounds relied on by the agency
In re Watts (In re Applied Materials, 8/29/12;
Interdigital, 8/1/12 (ITC); In re Aoyama, 8/29/11
(affirming invalidity based on indefiniteness of
means-plus-function claims, rather than the
BPAIs grounds of anticipation; see also J.
Newman, dissenting discussing Chenery (S.C.)
and In re Comiskey); In re Klein, 6/6/11 (n.1: PTO
on appeal improperly broadened the problem
addressed by the claimed invention, for
determining whether prior art was analogous
citing Chenery (S.C.)); Vizio, 5/26/10 (n.11: ITC
the CAFC cannot properly substitute its decision
on a discretionary issue (e.g., waiver) for that of
the Commission); Hyatt, 8/11/09 (addressing scope
of new evidence allowed in Section 145 actions)
[vacated]; In re Comiskey, 1/13/09 (en banc) (rule
distinguished based on Chenery (S.C.); see below;
see also J. Dyk, C.J. Michel, and J. Prost,
concurring in the denial of petition for rehearing en
banc, stating that the panel decision [which
affirmed the BPAIs claim rejections based on

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
unpatentable subject matter under Section 101,
rather than obviousness as relied on by the BPAI]
is entirely consistent with precedent allowing an
appellate tribunal to affirm an agency on
alternative legal grounds or to remand to the
agency to consider an alternative ground and that
it is also well established that an appellate court
has the power to decide a case on alternative legal
grounds without addressing [or rejecting] the
original ground of decision citing Koyo Seiko,
Schenck (S.C.)); Brand, 5/14/07 (PTO); Brown,
2/2/06 (PTO); In re Watts, 1/15/04 (PTO); Ulead
12/9/03 (dissent); Merck 10/30/03 (PTO)); See
also In re Avid Identification Systems, 1/8/13
(nonprecedential appellants argument not first
raised to the BPAI was waived, stating that the
CAFCs review of the BPAIs decision is confined
to the four corners of that record, because for
anything outside that record, the CAFC does not
have the benefit of the BPAIs informed judgment
on that issue for the courts review In re Watts);
In re Vaidyanathan, 5/19/10 (nonprecedential
rejecting the Solicitors new arguments on appeal
for how to interpret the cited prior art references,
ruling that the CAFCs review of the BPAIs
decision and whether supported by substantial
evidence must be based on the record and fact
findings of the BPAI, and not new arguments and
fact findings by the PTO for the first time on
appeal); In re Daneshvar, 2/18/10 (nonprecedential
the CAFC limiting its decision reversing the
BPAIs decision of unpatentability to the grounds
employed by the BPAI, on the record before it, for
affirming the examiners rejections, citing Chenery
(S.C.) and Buszard; also declining to consider the
PTOs citation of evidence not of record below); In
re Wheeler, 12/19/08 (nonprecedential reversing
the BPAIs anticipation rejection, and stating that

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
the court is powerless to affirm the administrative
action by substituting what it considers to be a
more adequate or proper basis)

- APA, 5 USC 706, governs the CAFCs


review of PTO proceedings Dickinson v.
Zurko (S.C.) (In re Leithem, 9/19/11; In re
Chapman, 2/24/10; In re Skvorecz, 9/3/09;
In re Comiskey, 1/13/09 (en banc) (rule
distinguished; see also J. Dyk, C.J. Michel,
and J. Prost, concurring in the denial of
petition for rehearing en banc, and
disagreeing with the dissent that Section 706
of the APA imposes a special requirement in
agency proceedings that the agencys
ground first be rejected before affirming on
an alternative ground); Aristocrat Techs.,
9/22/08 (rejecting the district courts
invalidity ruling under APA for the PTOs
improper revival of abandoned application);
In re Garner, 12/5/07; In re Buszard,
9/27/07; In re Omega, 7/23/07); under 35
USC 144, CAFC reviews BPAIs
decisions on the record before the [PTO]
(In re Comiskey, 1/13/09 (en banc) (rule
distinguished); Brand, 5/14/07); however,
the reviewing court shall decide all relevant
questions of law (In re Comiskey, 1/13/09
(en banc))

- Agency actions are set aside, under


the APA, only if arbitrary,
capricious, an abuse of discretion, or
otherwise not in accordance with law
5 USC 706(2)(A); factual findings
are reviewed for substantial evidence
(In re Leithem, 9/19/11 (BPAIs
affirmance of the examiners rejection

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
without remanding to give applicant
the opportunity to respond to the
BPAIs new ground of rejection was
not in accordance with law); Fred
Beverages, 5/12/10 (reversing the
TTABs decision as arbitrary and
capricious); In re Skvorecz, 9/3/09
(standard stated differently); Hyatt,
8/11/09 (affirming SJ by the district
court in Section 145 action where any
new evidence was properly excluded
and the BPAIs decision rejecting the
claims for lack of WD support was
supported by substantial evidence)
[vacated]; Tafas, 3/20/09 (also listing
reasons in Rule 706(2)(B)-(D))
[vacated on 7/6/09, and appeal
dismissed in Tafas, 11/13/09
(Order)]; Burandt, 6/10/08
(Directors denial of request for
reinstatement of patent after failing to
pay maintenance fees was neither
arbitrary or capricious, nor an abuse
of discretion); Bender, 6/21/07
(disciplinary action, sanctions against
attorney); Lacavera, 2/6/06; Star
Fruits, 1/3/05); See also Taylor,
8/4/09 (nonprecedential the PTOs
action in taking the applicants
maintenance fee payment without
notifying him of its deficiency, while
expiring his patent, was unreasonable,
and arbitrary and capricious, and
called for equitable relief by the
district court)

- Under the APA, the BPAIs


factual findings are reviewed to

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
determine whether they are
supported by substantial
evidence and the BPAIs legal
conclusions are review de novo
In re Gartside (In re
Chapman, 2/24/10; In re
Skvorecz, 9/3/09; Hyatt,
8/11/09 (discussing exceptions
to the limited review under the
APA, including where another
statute explicitly provides for
de novo review (Section 145
(district court review of BPAI
decision) does not); thus,
admission of new evidence in a
Section 145 action is limited by
the APA) [vacated]; In re
Garner, 12/5/07 (harmless
error); See also In re
Vaidyanathan, 5/19/10
(nonprecedential the entry of
the PTO into the deferential
review of the [APA] requires
the agency to provide support
for its findings In re Zurko);
See STANDARDS OF
REVIEW AND CHOICE OF
LAW BPAI/TTAB

- PTO decision reviewed for


abuse of discretion = decision
is based on erroneous
interpretation of the law, on
factual findings not supported
by substantial evidence, or
represents an unreasonable
judgment in weighing relevant
factors; the scope of review

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
under (the arbitrary and
capricious) standard is narrow
and court cannot substitute its
own judgment for that of
agency (Burandt, 6/10/08;
Lacavera, 2/6/06)

- While may not supply a reasoned basis for


the agencys action that the agency itself has
not given (under Chenery), the CAFC will
uphold a decision of less than ideal clarity if
the agencys path may reasonably be
discerned Bowman (S.C.) (In re Applied
Materials, 8/29/12)

- Subsequent PTO determination can have no


legal effect on an already-rendered judgment
of a court of competent jurisdiction; also, the
PTOs determination is not considered on
appeal if the district court did not address
the issue first (Technology Licensing,
10/10/08 (declining to re-weigh on appeal
the evidence before the district court based
on the PTOs subsequent reissue of the
patent in suit and reaching a different
conclusion than the district courts final
judgment the judicial process cannot be
held hostage to the agencys subsequent
review))

- Harmless error rule is applied to review of


agency decisions (In re Chapman, 2/24/10);
See also Error - by District Court and
BPAI/TTAB Harmless error rule

- APA cannot be used to challenge the PTOs


decision to issue patents (Pregis, 12/6/12
(third party was not entitled to sue the PTO

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
under the APA to challenge the PTOs
decision to issue patents))

- Agency actions (internal) generally are not


reviewable by the court, under APA (In re
Omega, 7/23/07 (TTAB); Bristol-Myers,
3/17/04 (J. Newman, dissenting)); See also
Sadeh, 5/12/10 (nonprecedential TTAB -
PTO has broad discretion, authority to
govern the conduct of proceedings)

- Courts should not readily intervene in


the day-to-day operations of an
administrative agency (In re Omega,
7/23/07)

- Requirement imposed by
trademark examiner was not so
extreme or unreasonable as to
warrant judicial intervention
into the internal procedures and
requirements of the PTO
trademark examination (In re
Omega, 7/23/07 (requiring
amendment to definition of
goods))

- BPAI must decide issue before the CAFC,


or district court (e.g., 146 action),
considers issue (In re Comiskey, 1/13/09 (en
banc) (rule distinguished; patentable subject
matter under 101); Boston Scientific
Scimed, 8/8/07 ( 146 action); Brown,
2/2/06); See also In re Daneshvar, 2/18/10
(nonprecedential CAFC not directing the
manner in which the PTO should proceed on
remand or indicate how the issue of

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
patentability should ultimately be resolved,
citing In re Lister)

- Exception a court may consider an


issue antecedent to and ultimately
dispositive of the dispute before it,
even an issue the parties fail to
identify and brief In re Seagate (In
re Comiskey, 1/13/09 (en banc)
(patentable subject matter under 101
is an antecedent question to 103
issue))

- Chenery doctrine

- CAFC cannot substitute new ground


for rejection to affirm the BPAIs
decision vs. exception (In re
Applied Materials, 8/29/12; In re
Aoyama, 8/29/11 (substituting
indefiniteness for anticipation; see
also J. Newman, dissenting); In re
Comiskey, 1/13/09 (en banc) (In re
Watts cited by J. Moore, J. Newman,
J. Rader, dissenting from denial of the
petition for rehearing en banc:
Courts, like us, are charged with
reviewing agency determinations.
There must be some limit to appellate
court authority to review agency
action, and . . . this court in Comiskey
crossed the line); In re Watts,
1/15/04); See also In re Daneshvar,
2/18/10 (nonprecedential relying on
Chenery (S.C.) to limit its decision to
the patentability grounds employed by
the BPAI, on the record before it)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Reviewing court can (and should)
affirm an agency decision on a legal
ground not relied on by the agency if
there is no issue of fact, policy, or
agency expertise SEC v. Chenery
(S.C.) (Flo Healthcare Solutions,
10/23/12 (n.7: was proper for the
CAFC to apply a different claim
construction with regard to alleged
means-plus-function claims in
affirming the PTABs holding of
invalidity); In re Aoyama, 8/29/11
(affirming invalidity based on
indefiniteness, a Q of law, rather than
anticipation; see also J. Newman,
dissenting); In re Comiskey, 1/13/09
(en banc) (PTO))

- CAFC, applying Chenery, may,


where appropriate, affirm an
agency (e.g., PTO) on grounds
other than those relied upon by
the agency in rendering its
decision, when upholding the
agencys decision does not
depend upon making a
determination of fact not
previously made by the agency
(Interdigital, 8/1/12 (declining
to uphold the ITCs decision on
a ground not ruled on by the
agency); In re Comiskey,
1/13/09 (en banc) (several cases
cited and distinguished
involving fact questions))

- Q of law is a ground for


affirmance within the power of

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
the appellate court to formulate;
a legal question, reviewed on
appeal without deference, is not
a determination of policy or
judgment which the agency
alone is authorized to make
i.e., the Chenery (S.C.) doctrine
(In re Aoyama, 8/29/11; In re
Skvorecz, 9/3/09 (n.2: claim
construction issue did not raise
an issue of the Chenery
doctrine); Princo, 4/20/09 (n.8:
whether a patent claim could be
reasonably construed to cover
the technology at issue was a
legal matter within the CAFCs
competence to decide) [vacated
on 10/13/09, and reinstated in
part in Princo, 8/30/10 (en
banc)]; In re Comiskey,
1/13/09 (en banc) (statutory
(patentable) subject matter)
under Section 101 is a legal
question; see also J. Dyk, C.J.
Michel, and J. Prost, concurring
in denial of the petition for
rehearing en banc; see also J.
Moore, J. Newman, and J.
Rader, dissenting from denial
of the petition, opining that
under Chenery (S.C.) the
appellate court must determine
first that the agency ground was
erroneous before affirming on
an alternative ground)); See
also In re POD-NERS, 7/10/09
(nonprecedential the CAFC
was not precluded by Chenery

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
from affirming the BPAI on
obviousness (a Q of law)
despite the BPAI not explaining
its conclusion of obviousness in
detail, where to reject the
BPAIs ruling on the grounds
the BPAI gave for its decision
would have denied the BPAI
recourse to common sense
under KSR (S.C.); see also J.
Prost, concurring only in the
result)

- Agency must give reasoned


explanation for departing from
established precedent or
treating similar situations
differently the court looks
only to the reasons given by the
agency SEC v. Chenery (S.C.)
(Fred Beverages, 5/12/10
(TTAB abused its discretion by
denying a motion for leave to
amend a cancellation petition
because of the absence of fees,
where there was no rule and
was not established practice of
the TTAB))

- Remanding case for


consideration of alternative
issue (In re Comiskey, 1/13/09
(en banc) (remanding to PTO
for determination in the first
instance whether system claims
define patentable subject matter
under Section 101))

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- District court is not bound by the PTOs
actions and must make its own independent
determination of patent validity (Medrad,
3/16/05)

- PTOs issuance of a related patent


does not affect the district courts
decision to invalidate patent (Medrad,
3/16/05)

Deference to PTO, examiners

- Attorney registration (Lacavera, 2/6/06)

- Deference due to the patent examiner, the PTO;


deference due to a qualified government agency
presumed to have done its job (Old Reliable
Wholesale, 3/16/11 (giving deference to the PTOs
patentability decision during reexamination, since
the PTO has acknowledged expertise in evaluating
prior art and assessing validity Hyatt (en banc));
Technology Licensing, 10/10/08 (no deference
regarding priority date determination where there
was no express evidence that the examiner
addressed the issue); Poweroasis, 4/11/08
(distinguishing Ralston, where deference given to
the PTOs priority determination); Zenon
Environmental, 11/7/07 (dissent, J. Newman);
Pharmastem, 7/9/07 (no deference given; see also
J. Newman, dissenting); North American
Container, 7/14/05; Prima Tek II, 6/22/05 (no
deference given)); See also St. Clair, 1/10/11
(nonprecedential reexamination procedure serves
an important role in providing a district court with
an expert view of the PTO Gould); Andersen,
11/19/08 (nonprecedential basis for overcoming

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
SJ of obviousness based on the same prior art
considered by the PTO)

- CAFC is not bound by the PTOs actions


and must make its own independent
determination of patent validity Medrad
(Novo Nordisk, 6/18/13 (no deference due
or added burden to overcome PTO factual
findings during prosecution in district court
infringement proceedings); Old Reliable
Wholesale, 3/16/11)

- Patent system depends primarily on PTOs


care in screening out invalid patents during
prosecution (Prima Tek II, 6/22/05 CAFC
concluded claims anticipated by PA which
was before the examiner)

- Deference to PTOs past practice whether


Congress has endorsed the views of the PTO in
subsequent legislation? (Myriad, 6/13/13 (S.C.)
(rejecting argument that the PTOs past practice of
awarding gene patents was entitled to deference,
where Congress had not endorsed the PTOs views
in subsequent legislation, and the government
argued that the PTOs past practice was not a
sufficient reason to hold gene patents patent-
eligible))

- Concern about patent holders reliance


interests arising from PTO determinations
where relevant, directed to Congress Mayo
(S.C.) (Myriad, 6/13/13 (S.C.) (n.7))

- Director of PTO charged with decision of whether


patent entitled to term extension (Pfizer, 8/2/06
(given great deference); Merck, 10/30/03)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Director of PTO given the responsibility of
determining the circumstances under which late
payment of maintenance fees may be waived,
despite Congresss intent to permit patentees to
avoid the inequitable loss of patent rights (Burandt,
6/10/08 (rejecting arguments that an alleged
equitable title holders delay was unavoidable))

- Disciplinary actions against attorneys for violating


PTO rules on attorney conduct statutory
authority under 35 USC 32, and PTO
disciplinary rules 37 CFR, section 10, based on
35 USC 2(b)(2)(D) (Bender, 6/21/07 (exclusion
from PTO practice; invention promoters);
Sheinbein, 9/25/06)

- Exclusion from practice before PTO when


disbarred in another jurisdiction (Sheinbein,
9/25/06)

- Statute of limitations 5 years, under


28 USC 2462 (Sheinbein, 9/25/06)

- Request for information by examiner so long as


the examiners request for information is not
arbitrary or capricious, the applicant cannot
impede the examiners performance of his duty
Star Fruits (Hyatt, 6/28/07)

- Suspension or waiver of PTO rules by Rule 183


petition section 183 is cast in discretionary
terms, providing that the Director may waive a
requirement (Burandt, 6/10/08 (no error in
Directors not waiving maintenance fee
requirement))

- Reexamination results on patentability of claims


on appeal (K-Tec, 9/6/12 (non-final reexam

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
determinations are of little relevance and present a
risk of jury confusion citing Callaway); Old
Reliable Wholesale, 3/16/11 (giving deference to
the PTOs patentability decision during
reexamination, since the PTO has acknowledged
expertise in evaluating prior art and assessing
validity Hyatt (en banc)); Dow Jones, 5/28/10
(n.3: an ultimately final rejection of the claims
would fatally undermine the presumption of
validity and would moot the appeal)); See also
Kimberly-Clark, 6/1/11 (nonprecedential n.3:
claim rejections during inter partes reexamination
proceeding are relevant when evaluating the
likelihood of success on the merits for granting a
PI Procter & Gamble)

BPAI

- Agency must assure that the applicants petition is


fully and fairly treated at the administrative level,
without interim need for judicial intervention
APA, Zurko (In re Biedermann, 10/18/13; In re
Stepan, 10/5/11; In re Leithem, 9/19/11 (citing In
re Kumar); In re Kumar, 8/15/05); See also U. of
Southern California, 3/22/12 (nonprecedential
BPAIs opinion must contain sufficient findings
and reasoning to permit meaningful appellate
review, where the BPAI erred by insufficiently
explaining its decision not to modify the count to
allow the movant to claim priority to its
provisional application)

- Applicant is entitled to respond to new


arguments, evidence produced by the BPAI,
e.g., respond to new rejections, thrust of
rejections (In re Biedermann, 10/18/13; In re
Stepan, 10/5/11 (vacating and remanding

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
where the BPAIs reliance on Section 102(a)
instead of Section 102(b), and finding that
the applicants Rule 131 declaration was
deficient, was a new ground of rejection); In
re Leithem, 9/19/11 (vacating and
remanding BPAI decision affirming the
examiners rejection for the applicant to
have opportunity to respond to the BPAIs
new ground of rejection); In re Kumar,
8/15/05)

- BPAI making new ground of rejection


the ultimate criterion of whether a
rejection is considered new in a
decision by the BPAI is whether the
applicant has had fair opportunity to
react to the thrust of the rejection --
the BPAI need not recite and agree
with the examiners rejection in haec
verba to avoid issuing a new ground
of rejection In re Kronig (CCPA)
(In re Biedermann, 10/18/13; In re
Leithem, 9/19/11)

- BPAIs reliance on new facts


and rationales not previously
raised to the applicant by the
examiner, which change the
thrust of the rejection = new
ground of rejection In re
Kumar (In re Biedermann,
10/18/13; In re Stepan, 10/5/11
(BPAI does not have discretion
to designate a new ground of
rejection, i.e., when it relies on
facts or legal argument not
advanced by the examiner, but
instead is required under the

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
APA to provide notice to the
applicant); In re Leithem,
9/19/11 (BPAI made new
ground of rejection where
found new facts concerning the
scope and content of the prior
art and the differences between
the prior art and the claimed
invention, and these facts were
the principal evidence upon
which the BPAIs rejection was
based, and the applicant would
have responded differently had
the examiners rejection been
based on these facts))

- BPAIs decision must be based on the four corners


of the record under the substantial evidence
standard applied to the BPAIs fact findings, the
CAFC searches for evidence clearly set forth in the
record to justify the BPAIs conclusions; the
record of the BPAI is closed and the BPAIs
decision must be justified within the four corners
of the record Gartside (In re Applied Materials,
8/29/12; In re Stepan, 10/5/11 (see IV.
Conclusion); Brand, 5/14/07); See also Fluor Tec,
12/11/12 (nonprecedential n.1: declining to
consider prior art reference as knowledge of the
POS in the art, which was not before the BPAI
review of the BPAIs decision is confined to the
four corners of that record In re Watts); In re
Pepperball Techs., 3/7/12 (nonprecedential the
CAFC concluded that a claimed range was obvious
based on substantial evidence in the record that
was different from the reason the BPAI relied on
for concluding obviousness); In re Reuning,
4/25/08 (nonprecedential the BPAI is charged
with deciding factual issues in the first instance,

227
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
and thus should have substantively reviewed the
appellants arguments and examiners rejections
regarding obviousness, despite the appellants
procedural mistakes in its appeal brief; see also J.
Linn, concurring, stating that the BPAIs actions
were inconsistent with the PTOs mission: to
ensure that the intellectual property system
contributes to a strong global economy,
encourages investment in innovation, and fosters
entrepreneurial spirit)

- Contested, inter partes, proceedings before PTO


(e.g., interferences) the BPAIs fact findings
must be limited to the record before the agency;
PTOs regulations highlight the importance of a
comprehensive record in contested proceedings;
the BPAI in contested cases is an impartial
adjudicator of an adversarial dispute between two
parties (Brand, 5/14/07)

- BPAI cannot base fact findings in a


contested case on its own expertise the
BPAI is not permitted to base fact findings
on its expertise (although the BPAIs
expertise plays a role in interpreting record
evidence), rather than on the evidence in the
record (Brand, 5/14/07 (maybe different for
ex parte proceeding))

- BPAI cannot substitute its own


expertise for the knowledge of a POS
in the art, as supported by the record
(Brand, 5/14/07 (interference -
priority of invention, derivation))

- Examiners decision on patentability


affirmed by the BPAI on any grounds
supported by the record (Rexnord, 1/23/13

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(appellee on appeal to the BPAI in inter
partes reexamination may argue any
alternative bases supported by the record to
affirm the examiners decision))

- BPAI cannot open issue on remand not raised by


party during appeal waiver (Brown, 2/2/06)

- Expert declarations BPAI has broad discretion as


to weight given to declarations offered during
prosecution (American Academy of Sciences,
5/13/04)

- CAFC defers to the BPAIs findings


concerning the credibility of expert
witnesses Velander (Yorkey II, 4/7/10
(BPAI was well within its discretion to give
more credibility to one partys expert over
the other partys unless no reasonable trier
of fact could have done so))

Agency/PTO regulations

Substantial deference/Chevron (S.C.) deference

- Agencys interpretation of its own regulations is


entitled to substantial deference and will be
accepted unless plainly erroneous or inconsistent
with the regulation (in situations of ambiguity)
Star Fruits, In re Sullivan (Belkin Intl, 10/2/12; In
re Stepan, 10/5/11 (PTOs regulatory interpretation
was due no deference in view of its statutory
obligation under the APA to provide prior notice to
the applicant of new facts and law asserted); In re
Lovin, 7/22/11 (BPAI reasonably interpreted Rule
41.37 to require substantive patentability
arguments for individual claims in an appeal
brief); Koninklijke Philips, 1/5/10 (rejecting the

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
BPAIs interpretation of the PTOs broadest
reasonable construction rule for interferences, as
applied to challenging a copied claim on WD
grounds, as contrary to the CAFCs rule in In re
Spina); Hyatt, 12/23/08 (BPAIs interpretation of
ground of rejection in 37 CFR 1.192(c)(7)); In re
Swanson, 9/4/08 (n.3); In re Garner, 12/5/07
(BPAI interpretation of new evidence in 37
CFR 41.202(d) (interference rule) was inconsistent
with the regulation); Firsthealth, 2/27/07 (TTAB);
Lacavera, 2/6/06; Star Fruits, 1/3/05); See also
Omura, 4/8/11 (nonprecedential BPAI properly
interpreted interference rules in entering adverse
judgment against patentee who conceded its claims
were unpatentable)

- BPAIs interpretation, application of PTO


regulations abuse of discretion
(Koninklijke Philips, 1/5/10 (abuse of
discretion defined; interference rule);
Stevens, 5/4/04; In re Sullivan, 3/22/04)

- Deference to agency regulations if reasonable,


permissible interpretation of a statute, then entitled
to Chevron deference (Wyeth, 5/3/10 (FDAs
interpretation of Section 156(g) (patent term
extension for animal drug patent) was reasonable
under Chevron analysis);Wyeth, 1/7/10 (PTOs
interpretation of Section 154(b) was not entitled to
deference under either Chevron (S.C.) or Skidmore
(S.C.), ruling that [b]ecause the language of the
statute itself controls this case and sets an
unambiguous rule for overlapping extensions, this
court detects no reason to afford special deference
to the PTOs interpretation); Tafas, 3/20/09
(applying Chevron deference to the PTOs
interpretation of the Patent Act under its
rulemaking authority of Section 2(b)(2) in

230
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
promulgating rules limiting the number of
continuations and RCEs, and number of claims)
[vacated on 7/6/09, and appeal dismissed in
Tafas, 11/13/09 (Order)]; Hyatt, 12/23/08;
Cooper Techs., 8/19/08 (concluding that the PTOs
interpretation of the inter partes reexam provision
of the AIPA (published in the Federal Register and
MPEP, but not the CFR) as including
continuations was reasonable and entitled to
Chevron deference); Bender, 6/21/07 (PTO;
disciplinary action against attorney); Brand,
5/14/07 (PTO); Lacavera, 2/6/06 (PTO); In re
Sullivan, 3/22/04 (PTO); Apotex, 10/27/03 (FDA))

- No deference is due to agency


interpretations at odds with the plain
language of a statute Smith (S.C.) (Wyeth,
1/7/10 (concluding that Section 154(b)s
language is clear, unambiguous, and
intolerant of the PTOs suggested
interpretation))

- Congress gave PTO authority to issue


(procedural) regulations entitled to
Chevron deference = given controlling
weight unless arbitrary, capricious, or
manifestly contrary to statute (In re Lovin,
7/22/11; Tafas, 3/20/09 (PTOs rules were
procedural) [vacated on 7/6/09, and appeal
dismissed in Tafas, 11/13/09 (Order)];
Cooper Techs., 8/19/08; In re Sullivan,
3/22/04)

- Chevron deference is given to the PTOs


interpretation of statutory provisions relating
to the conduct of proceedings in the PTO
(i.e., for making procedural or interpretive
rules, as opposed to substantive rules, which

231
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
the PTO is not authorized to make), pursuant
to the PTOs authority to administer such
statutory provisions by establishing
regulations governing the same, under 35
USC 2 (Bettcher Indus., 10/3/11 (PTOs
authority includes a prospective clarification
of ambiguous statutory language, citing
Cooper Techs.); Wyeth, 1/7/10 (not
addressing the district courts conclusion
that the PTOs regulation interpreting
Section 154(b) was a substantive, rather than
procedural, rule); Tafas, 3/20/09 (Chevron
deference given where the PTOs rules were
procedural and within the scope of its
rulemaking authority in Section 2(b)(2); see
also J. Rader, dissenting arguing that the
PTOs rules were substantive (as they
drastically change the existing law and alter
an inventors rights and obligations under
the Patent Act), not procedural, and thus
the PTO exceeded its statutory rulemaking
authority) [vacated on 7/6/09, and appeal
dismissed in Tafas, 11/13/09 (Order)]; In
re Swanson, 9/4/08 (n.3, citing Cooper
Techs. - distinguishing the PTO from the
BPAI, which is given no deference for
statutory interpretation), Cooper Techs.,
8/19/08); See also Mikkilineni, 11/9/10
(nonprecedential addressing substantive
vs. interpretive rule making, and concluding
that the Interim Section 101 Guidelines are
interpretive, rather than substantive, and
thus are exempt from the notice and
comment requirements of Section 553 of the
APA)

- PTO lacks substantive rulemaking


authority Merck v. Kessler, 35 USC

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
2 (Therasense, 5/25/11 (en banc)
(the CAFC is not bound by the
definition of materiality in PTO
rules); Koninklijke Philips, 1/5/10
(interference regulation disregarding
the CAFCs precedent in In re Spina
was ruled not to apply to the WD
challenge of a copied claim in the
interference))

- Chevron deference two-step


analysis applied 1) does the statute
(i.e., Congress) speak to the issue?
(i.e., employing the traditional tools
of statutory construction by
examining the statutes text, structure,
and legislative history, and applying
the relevant canons of interpretation),
and 2) if silent or ambiguous, was the
agencys interpretation based on a
permissible construction of the
statute?, i.e., the court defers to the
agencys reasonable interpretation of
the statute (Tianrui Group, 10/11/11
(ITCs reasonable interpretations of
Section 337 are entitled to deference);
Tafas, 3/20/09 (PTOs regulations
were both procedural and consistent
with the Patent Act, and thus valid,
except for the rule limiting the
number of continuations, which was
invalid in view of Section 120; see
also J. Bryson, concurring
proposing an alternative construction
of Section 120, which would permit
limiting the number of serial
continuations) [vacated on 7/6/09,
and appeal dismissed in Tafas,

233
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
11/13/09 (Order)]; Cooper Techs.,
8/19/08 (contains an excellent
analysis of why Chevron deference
was given to the PTOs interpretation
of the inter partes reexam provision of
the AIPA as including continuations);
Bender, 6/21/07; Brand, 5/14/07;
Lacavera, 2/6/06); See also
STATUTORY INTERPRETATION

- Agencys contemporaneous
construction of a statute is
given particular weight (Cooper
Techs., 8/19/08)

- Chevron (S.C.) step zero


whether courts should use the
Chevron framework at all
(Tafas, 3/20/09 (agencys
(PTOs) determination of the
scope of its own authority (and
whether Section 2(b)(2)
provides substantive
rulemaking authority) is not
entitled to Chevron deference)
[vacated on 7/6/09, and
appeal dismissed in Tafas,
11/13/09 (Order)])

- Even if a court has previously


resolved the specific question at
issue, the agencys construction
must be adopted unless the
prior court decision holds that
its construction follows from
the unambiguous terms of the
statute and thus leaves no room
for agency action Brand X

234
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(S.C.) (In re Lovin, 7/22/11;
Tafas, 3/20/09 (CAFC in a
prior decision had determined
that Section 120
unambiguously does not limit
the number of continuations
that can be filed, thus
invalidating the PTOs rule
doing the same) [vacated on
7/6/09, and appeal dismissed
in Tafas, 11/13/09 (Order)])

- Whether congressional inaction


suggests an endorsement of the
agencys interpretation, i.e.,
Congress not amending the
provision when it had the
opportunity? (Cooper Techs.,
8/19/08 (concluding that
Congresss election not to
amend the disputed statutory
language further supported the
PTOs interpretation as being
reasonable))

- Congress is presumed to
be aware of pertinent
existing law (Cooper
Techs., 8/19/08
(presumed that Congress
was aware of the PTOs
interpretation of a statute,
which was published in
the Federal Register))

- Deference to an agencys statutory


interpretation Chevron (S.C.); Skidmore
(S.C.) (Interdigital, 8/1/12; (the ITCs

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
consistent interpretation of Section 337 that
licensing activities alone satisfy the
domestic industry requirement was entitled
to Chevron deference); Photocure, 5/10/10
(no deference was given to the PTOs
interpretation of Section 156 in denying a
patent term extension, where the PTOs
reasoning was neither persuasive nor
consistent, under Skidmore, and the statute
was not ambiguous, under Chevron (S.C.)))

- Neither Chevron nor Skidmore


permits a court to defer to an incorrect
agency interpretation (Photocure,
5/10/10 (stating the above rule, even
if some level of deference were owed
to the PTOs interpretation of Section
156))

- Deference due to agency positions on a legal


question (vs. fact question), under Chevron
(S.C.) (Brand, 5/14/07)

- Administrative regulations cannot


trump judicial precedent, which is as
binding on administrative agencies as
are statutes Rowe (Koninklijke
Philips, 1/5/10 (rejecting the BPAIs
application of interference regulation
as contrary to the CAFCs precedent
in In re Spina as relates to challenging
a copied claim in an interference on
WD grounds, reminding the district
court (which affirmed the BPAI on
this procedural ground) and the BPAI
that they must follow judicial
precedent instead of the PTOs
regulation because the PTO lacks the

236
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
substantive rulemaking authority to
administratively set aside judicial
precedent); Agilent Techs., 6/4/09)

- BPAI does not earn Chevron


deference on questions of substantive
patent law - Merck (Brand, 5/14/07)

- Gap-filling regulation (i.e., when


Congress did not directly address issue in
statute) entitled to deference, based on
authority delegated to the agency to make
rules to administer statutory scheme (In re
Lovin, 7/22/11; Cooper Techs., 8/19/08
(concluding the PTO gave a permissible
construction to statute where an
interpretational gap existed regarding the
statute); Apotex, 10/27/03 (FDA))

- Substantial deference to PTO in making and


interpreting (interference) regulations
Congress granted plenary power over PTO
practice (Koninklijke Philips, 1/5/10 (BPAI
abused discretion); Cooper Techs., 8/19/08;
Stevens, 5/4/04)

- New rule vs. old rules new procedural rules


applied if and only if they did not affect parties
reliance interests (Falkner, 5/26/06)

- Violation of equal protection whether regulation


in question is rationally related to legitimate
government interest (Lacavera, 2/6/06)

Attorney fee awards

237
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- District court must provide a concise, clear explanation
of its reasons for finding an exceptional case, as well as
its reasons for awarding attorney fees, or when attorney
fees are denied despite the presence of one or more of the
limited circumstances for awarding fees, for the CAFC
to provide meaningful review (Spectralytics, 6/13/11;
Wedgetail, 8/12/09 (the district courts lack of a detailed
analysis for denying fees did not warrant reversal when
the record supported the denial, where the accused
infringer was unable to cite anything that could compel a
finding of exceptionality or would otherwise suggest a
need for the district court to provide its reasoning);
Innovation Techs., 6/16/08 (attorney fee award vacated
and the case remanded after the district court failed to
provide fact findings for concluding the case was
exceptional based on bad faith litigation); Intl
Rectifier, 9/23/05; Stephens, 12/29/04)

- Claim construction the district court is not


required definitively to determine the meaning of
the claims in considering whether a case is
exceptional; however, the court should make a
sufficient analysis of the claims probable meaning
to enable it to determine whether the patentees
proposed construction of the disputed language
was sufficiently plausible to justify filing suit
based upon that construction; next, if the claim
construction was permissible, there also must have
been sufficient evidence to justify the patentees
claim of infringement based on that construction
(Innovation Techs., 6/16/08 (district court failed to
construe the disputed claim terms prior to
determining the case was exceptional and
awarding the accused infringers attorney fees))

- Detail necessary in making exceptional case


findings is a matter largely within the district
courts discretion (Innovation Techs., 6/16/08)

238
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Because of the reputational and economic impact
of sanctions, the CAFC must carefully examine the
record when reviewing an exceptional case finding
Medtronic Navigation

- District courts reasons for denial of fees are unnecessary


when the record supports the denial Serio-US
(Wedgetail, 8/12/09 (remand was thus unwarranted,
citing Consolidated Aluminum: [n]o useful purpose
would be served by a remand to enable the district court
to tell us in express terms what we already know from the
record))

- Although an attorney fee award is not mandatory


when willful infringement has been found,
precedent establishes that the court should explain
its decision not to award attorney fees
Transclean (Spectralytics, 6/13/11)

Briefing and arguing the CAFC appeal waiver, joint appendix

Briefing the appeal generally appeal strategy

- Appeal strategy (Presidio Components, 12/19/12 (C.J.


Rader the CAFC rejecting the appellants attempt to
retry the case anew on appeal by asserting error on over a
dozen issues, and the cross-appellant responding with at
least five issues of its own, stating that [t]he parties
appeal strategy completely discounts and overlooks the
thorough, well-reasoned, and detailed opinions of the
district court. In nearly every respect, this court detects
no reversible error.))

Attorney argument is not evidence

- Attorney argument and unsworn fact statements are not


evidence - Laitram (Whitserve, 8/7/12 (arguments of

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
counsel cannot take the place of evidence lacking in the
record); Becton Dickinson, 7/29/10; Perfect Web,
12/2/09 (partys position on appeal was merely attorney
argument lacking evidentiary support); Gemtron, 7/20/09
(attorney argument made for the first time at oral
argument on appeal that the accused product was made
by a different process than reflected by the claim was not
evidence and thus could not rebut directly contradictory
video evidence and other evidence of the accused
infringers manufacturing process)); See also In re
Natures Remedies, 3/12/09 (nonprecedential evidence
of record did not support attorneys assertion at oral
argument)

Issues must be raised in opening brief with particularity


reply brief is too late - waiver

- Issues must be raised in opening brief with particularity


(to give the appellee a chance to respond); the reply brief
is too late (Aristocrat Techs., 3/13/13 (n.1); Arcelormittal
France, 11/30/12 (n.6: other secondary considerations
were not briefed sufficiently to preserve them, where the
patentee made only a passing reference to them); Aventis
Pharma, 4/9/12 (waiver of argument for nonobviousness,
which was raised only in the reply brief); Tyco
Healthcare, 6/22/11 (remarking that the appellant-
patentee failed to refer to articles as relevant prior art in
its opening brief; denying motion to strike portions of
reply brief as moot); Hynix, 5/13/11 (arguments in reply
brief are waived as not presented in the opening brief);
Advanced Magnetic Closures, 6/11/10; i4i, 3/10/10
(solitary sentence in opening brief failed to challenge the
denial of a post-verdict JMOL on willfulness); Titan Tire,
6/3/09; Voda, 8/18/08; Monsanto, 1/25/08 (reply brief
too late, but CAFC addressed the merits of argument
anyway); U.S. Philips, 11/2/07; In re Trans Texas
Holdings, 8/22/07; E-Pass Technologies, 1/12/07;

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Optivus Tech., 11/16/06; Kao, 3/21/06; Smithkline
Beecham, 2/24/06; Cross Medical Prods., 9/30/05;
Evident, 2/22/05; Fuji Photo, 1/14/05)

- CAFC has discretion to consider arguments not


properly raised in opening brief (Advanced
Magnetic Closures, 6/11/10 (exception if results in
unfair procedure); Litecubes, 4/28/08 (CAFC
exercised its discretion to consider the district
courts denial of JMOL motions in view of the
unusual circumstances of the case where the issues
were briefed under the incorrect rubric of subject
matter jurisdiction); Smithkline Beecham,
2/24/06)

- Footnotes arguments in footnotes are not


preserved, and are waived (Mirror Worlds, 9/4/12;
Whitserve, 8/7/12; Otsuka, 5/7/12; Liquid
Dynamics, 6/1/06; Smithkline Beecham, 2/24/06)

- Waiver of arguments not presented in the opening


brief (Aventis Pharma, 4/9/12; Finjan, 11/4/10;
Advanced Magnetic Closures, 6/11/10 (waiver by
failing to argue against litigation misconduct as an
independent basis for awarding attorney fees);
Ajinomoto, 3/8/10 (conclusory, single sentence
assertion of no IC unaccompanied by developed
argumentation did not preserve the issue for
appeal); SEB, 2/5/10 (appeal of the district courts
modification of a pre-judgment attachment was
waived where the appellant made no arguments in
its briefs with respect to that appeal); Perfect Web,
12/2/09 (waiver where no obviousness arguments
were made specific to the dependent claims);
Revolution Eyewear, 4/29/09 (n.2); E-Pass
Technologies, 3/20/09; Litecubes, 4/28/08;
Monsanto, 1/25/08; Cordis, 1/7/08 (CAFC
decision that issued after the filing of all briefs, but

241
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
before oral arguments, did not change waiver);
U.S. Philips, 11/2/07; In re Trans Texas Holdings,
8/22/07 (failure to argue validity in view of
alternative broader claim construction); Takeda,
6/28/07; E-Pass Technologies, 1/12/07; Optivus
Tech., 11/16/06) ALSO - need developed
argument to avoid waiver (Voda, 8/18/08 (no
reasons given for obviousness); Halliburton,
1/25/08 (n.2: Judges are not like pigs, hunting for
truffles buried in briefs); Monsanto, 8/16/06;
Smithkline Beecham, 2/24/06); See also Garrido,
10/22/13 (nonprecedential reply brief was too
late); Shimano, 4/29/13 (nonprecedential n.1:
declining to consider the parties post-argument
submissions regarding whether issues were
presented to the examiner or BPAI during reexam,
and addressing instead only those arguments made
in the parties opening appeal and cross-appeal
briefs); Asia Pacific Microsystems, 3/6/13 (Order)
(nonprecedential on the appellees motion to
dismiss, summarily affirming the ITCs judgment
of a general exclusion order due to the appellants
waiver of contributory infringement argument on
appeal, where the appellant made a deliberate
choice of focusing its appeal on inducement, as
well as expressly acknowledged its desire to
abandon any argument regarding contributory
infringement); Radar Industries, 3/30/11
(nonprecedential n.5: waiver of argument not
sufficiently briefed)

- Waiver only to accused products on appeal


(U.S. Philips, 11/2/07, n.2)

Issue must be raised on appeal, or waiver

242
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Issue must be raised on appeal for the CAFC to address,
or waiver (Soverain Software, 9/4/13 (waiver on appeal
by the patentee for failing to separately argue the validity
of dependent claims when independent claim is invalid
citing Gardner, SIBIA Neurosciences); Voter Verified,
11/5/12 (waiver of indirect infringement based on rule in
Akamai (en banc) for not arguing on appeal); Santarus,
9/4/12 (waiver by not contending error by the district
court on issue); In re Antor Media, 7/27/12 (waiver by
the patentee of argument for lack of enablement of prior
art reference where was not raised in brief); Mezzalingua
Assocs., 10/4/11 (J. Reyna, dissenting n.3: exception
for pure question of law, e.g., statutory construction);
Cordance, 9/23/11 (waiver on appeal where arguments
were not presented specifically relevant to the patentees
entitlement to a new trial regarding the validity of two
claims); Tivo, 4/20/11 (en banc) (scope of injunction
must be challenged on direct appeal, and not later on
appeal from a contempt judgment); Innovention Toys,
3/21/11 (CAFC not reviewing the district courts
construction of movable to encompass the capability of
movement, because the accused infringer did not
challenge the district courts construction directly but
rather indirectly based on its application to the accused
product); Finjan, 11/4/10 (waiver where alternate claim
construction was not proposed or how it would affect the
jurys infringement finding); Amgen, 9/15/09 (declining
to apply waiver where appellant did not raise alternative
grounds of affirmance despite the appellees cross-appeal
relating to the claim); Baden Sports, 2/13/09 (waiver of
argument not made by cross appellant on appeal, making
instead another (losing) argument); In re Swanson,
9/4/08 (waiving arguments on the merits where the
appellant relied solely on statutory construction); Golden
Bridge Tech., 5/21/08 (appeal focused on an entirely
different argument from the one lost at the district court);
Halliburton, 1/25/08 (n.2); Princo (Order), 3/1/07;
Business Objects, 1/6/05)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Argument by incorporation, such as by referring to
a summary judgment memoranda for legal analysis
in an appellate brief, violates FRAP 28(a)
(Monsanto, 8/16/06)

- CAFC generally declines to raise an issue sua


sponte that the parties have not presented WMS
Gaming (Rambus, 9/24/13)

- Merely stating disagreement with the trial court


does not amount to a developed argument
(Halliburton, 1/25/08 (n.2); Monsanto, 8/16/06;
Smithkline Beecham, 2/24/06)

- Objection to other partys waiver was waived for


failure to appeal (Princo (Order), 3/1/07)

- Party cannot argue an issue of which it lost at trial,


and which it has not appealed, if the CAFCs
acceptance of the argument would result in
reversal or modification of the judgment, rather
than an affirmance (Aquatex, 8/19/05)

Waiver during oral argument

- Waiver during oral argument (Celsis In Vitro, 1/9/12


(joint infringement argument raised for the first time
during oral argument waived); Delaware Valley, 3/11/10
(waiver of argument not (at least clearly) contested
during SJ proceeding was supported by counsels answer
to question of waiver during oral argument); Ultimax
Cement, 12/3/09 (dismissing appeal with respect to
patent after the patentee waived argument that the patent
was not invalid (thereby rendering moot its argument as
to infringement) by stating at oral argument that it was
not concerned with the district courts finding of

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
invalidity)); See also Joovy, 8/5/11 (nonprecedential
vacating IC judgment after appellee explicitly waived
remand to determine IC under Therasense (en banc) in
the event claim held invalid)

Length and number of briefs

- Extending the length of briefs - motion for leave to file


an extended brief is not invited or routinely granted
Fed. Cir. R. 28(c) (Therasense (Order), 2/2/09
(nonprecedential - party failed to show that an extension
of the word count for its reply brief was warranted,
despite multiple appellees))

- Single reply brief is permitted under FRAP 28(c),


regardless of how many appellee briefs are filed
(Therasense (Order), 2/2/09 (nonprecedential))

- Motion to strike reply brief improper attempt to obtain


the final word in the appeal, a practice that the CAFC
strongly discourages (Inventio, 6/15/11)

Concessions in briefs, at oral argument

- Concessions made in briefs, at oral argument (Bosch,


10/13/11 (n.6: counsel was unable to assure that the
infringer could satisfy a damages judgment and
prospective royalty payment in lieu of an injunction);
Atlantic Research, 10/6/11 (admission at oral argument
that patent did not disclose embodiment covered by
reissue patent claims, as construed); In re NTP I, 8/1/11
(patentees concessions made in reply brief could not be
reargued on remand: This was the opportunity for NTP
to appeal these issues. Given that it raised these issues,
but then conceded them, NTP is bound by these
concessions and may not reargue these points.); Erbe

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Elektromedizin, 5/19/09 (term working channel of
endoscope did not include suction or gas delivery
because the appellant conceded in brief that a working
channel must be an instrument channel)); See also
Centillion Data Systems, 11/25/13 (nonprecedential for
a statement made to the court to be a judicial admission
it must be clear, deliberate, and unambiguous (applying
7th Cir. law) no judicial admission where statement
during a prior appeal was made in a different context);
Altair Engineering, 3/9/11 (nonprecedential CAFC
relying on concession made at oral argument); Cimline,
3/2/11 (nonprecedential no issue of fact to avoid SJ if
fail to respond to opponents arguments and answers to
panel questions during oral argument)

Mischaracterizing, misquoting text, excessive hyperbole in


briefs

- Mischaracterizing, misquoting text, failure to use


ellipses, in briefs (Rates Technology, 7/26/12 (CAFC
expressing disapproval of several misleading or improper
statements in brief, including headings factually incorrect
and citing a prior CAFC case as precedent, but failing to
note that the prior case was a nonprecedential Rule 36
judgment); Exergen, 8/4/09 (overstating the content of
expert testimony as the basis for infringement); Felix,
4/10/09 (finding highly misleading dictionary
definitions in brief (which omitted words without using
ellipses) that border[ed] on a misrepresentation to the
court and reminding counsel of the importance of
providing full, accurate, and undistorted quotations and
citations in briefing before this court); Monsanto,
1/25/08 (risks misleading this Court)); See also Nissim,
12/11/12 (nonprecedential n.4: excessive hyperbole in
the briefs made the parties difficult to take seriously and
unpleasant to read, and stripped both parties of their
credibility; also noting unprofessional statements and

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
misrepresentations in briefs); McZeal, 6/18/09
(nonprecedential n.2: appellee mischaracterized the
lower court opinion in brief); Medegen, 11/20/08
(nonprecedential counsel are responsible for ensuring
that the briefs contain accurate information)

Striking portions of briefs ad hominem attacks

- Striking portions of appellate briefs ad hominem


attacks of opponents are not condoned, and typically do
more harm than good to the party that launches them (In
re Cygnus Telecomms., 8/19/08 (reply brief accused the
appellee and its counsel of lying and committing a
crime that should be reported to the appropriate
authorities))

Confidentiality in briefs

- Confidentiality markings in briefs CAFC Rule 28(d) (In


re Violation of Rule 28(d), 3/29/11)

- Strong (but on absolute) presumption in favor of a


common law right of public access to court
proceedings Nixon (S.C.) (In re Violation of Rule
28(d), 3/29/11)

- Well settled that FRCP 26(c)(1) does not provide


an absolute privilege against disclosure of material
that a party might wish to mark as confidential
the rule instead permits a court to issue limited
protective orders to prevent the discovery or
disclosure of certain information, or to specify the
use that may be made of discovered information
(In re Violation of Rule 28(d), 3/29/11 (addressing
the effect of subsection G covering protection of
trade secrets and other commercial information))

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
Joint appendix

- Joint appendix - costs for preparing the joint appendix


for including briefing on motions, duplication of
materials Fed. Cir. R. 30 (In re Cygnus Telecomms.,
8/19/08 (motion denied)); See also Clearvalue, 8/1/11
(nonprecedential ordering cross-appellant to pay
appellant the costs for including improper and excessive
pages of materials in the joint appendix, and that cross-
appellant prepare a corrected joint appendix)

- Moving to strike portions of the appendix not part


of the record on appeal (which includes the
original papers and exhibits filed in the district
court Fed. Cir. R. 10(a)) (In re Cygnus
Telecomms., 8/19/08 (motion to strike denied))

Choice of law CAFC vs. regional circuit law

- CAFC law vs. regional circuit law (Wordtech Systems,


6/16/10 (damages in patent cases applying CAFC vs.
9th Cir. law); Fujifilm, 5/27/10; Judkins, 4/8/08 (giving
dominant effect to Federal Circuit precedent insofar as it
reflects considerations specific to patent issues with
respect to section 43(a) Lanham Act claim for bad faith
enforcement of patent); Mitutoyo, 9/5/07; O2 Micro,
11/15/06; Aero Products, 10/2/06; Louisville Bedding,
7/25/06; Invitrogen, 10/5/05; Lab Corp. of America,
9/30/04; Q-Pharma, 3/8/04; Sulzer, 2/14/04; Ferguson,
12/4/03; Electronics, 8/18/03); See also In re Cypress
Semiconductor, 4/2/09 (Order) (nonprecedential
preclusion (res judicata) question arising in an ITC
proceeding was governed by CAFC law, because any
appeal of the ITCs final determination would be within
the CAFCs exclusive jurisdiction)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Patent-related, questions unique to U.S. patent law
apply CAFC law (Accenture, 9/5/13; Wordtech
Systems, 6/16/10 (damages in patent cases); Hyatt,
8/11/09 (CAFC law applied to exclusion of
evidence by the D.C. district court in Section 145
actions) [vacated]; Acumed, 5/13/08 (claim
preclusion applied to successive claims of patent
infringement); Dominant Semiconductors, 4/23/08
(CAFC law applied to whether state-law tort
claims are preempted by federal patent law); BIO,
8/1/07 (objectives of patent statute); Voda, 2/1/07
(supplemental jurisdiction over foreign patent
infringement claims); Aero Products, 10/2/06
(damages for both patent and trademark damages);
In re Echostar Communications, 5/1/06 (scope of
waiver of privilege for advice of counsel defense
to willfulness); Invitrogen, 10/5/05; Ferguson,
12/4/03)

- CAFC law applied to both substantive and


procedural issues intimately involved in the
substance of enforcement of the patent right
(Pregis, 12/6/12; Revision Military,
11/27/12 (preliminary injunction); Wordtech
Systems, 6/16/10 (patent damages);
Fujifilm, 5/27/10; Judkins, 4/8/08 (bad faith
enforcement of patent under section 43(a) of
Lanham Act); Voda, 2/1/07; O2 Micro,
11/15/06)

- CAFC law applies when deciding whether


particular written or other materials are
discoverable in a patent case, if those
materials relate to issue of substantive patent
law (In re Echostar Communications,
5/1/06)

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Procedural issue pertaining to or unique to patent
law apply CAFC law (Lazare Kaplan, 4/19/13
(review of grant of Rule 60(b) motion vacating
judgment that patent was not invalid, after the
CAFC broadened the claim construction in earlier
appeal Q of law for the CAFC because consistent
and uniform application by the district courts
required in patent cases citing Fiskars); Revision
Military, 11/27/12 (preliminary injunction);
Woods, 8/28/12 (applying Section 282); Teva,
12/1/11 (requirements of Section 102(g)); General
Protecht Group, 7/8/11 (PI against participation in
a district court suit for infringement and an ITC
investigation); Wordtech Systems, 6/16/10 (patent
damages); In re Deutsche Bank, 5/27/10
(discovery matter implicated issue of substantive
patent law); Baden Sports, 2/13/09 (modifying
injunction); Wechsler, 5/18/07; Voda, 2/1/07;
Walter Kidde, 3/2/07; O2 Micro, 11/15/06; Aero
Products, 10/2/06; Invitrogen, 10/5/05; Lab Corp.
of America, 9/30/04)

- Procedural issue that is not itself a


substantive patent law issue is nonetheless
governed by CAFC law if the issue pertains
to patent law, if it bears an essential
relationship to matters committed to
CAFCs exclusive control by statute, or if it
clearly implicates the jurisprudential
responsibilities of the CAFC in a field
within its exclusive jurisdiction (O2 Micro,
11/15/06)

- Regional circuit law applied (i.e., the law of the


regional circuit to which district appeals normally
lie), if not patent-related, if procedural question not
unique to CAFCs exclusive jurisdiction (Sanofi-
Aventis, 5/10/13 (applying 9th Cir. law to a denial

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
of an anti-suit (arbitration) injunction abuse of
discretion); Wi-Lan, 7/13/12 (scope of attorney-
client privilege, handling of subpoena (9th Cir.);
Landmark Screens, 4/23/12 (statute of limitations
issues - equitable estoppel, equitable tolling (9th
Cir.)); Ultimax Cement, 12/3/09 (attorney
disqualification (9th Cir.)); Imation, 11/3/09
(motion for judgment on the pleadings under
FRCP 12(c) (8th Cir.)); Stanford U., 9/30/09
(affirmative defenses under FRCP 8(c)(2) (9th
Cir.)) [affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court, on
6/6/11, in Stanford U. v. Roche]; Garber, 6/26/09
(FRCP 60(b) motion and FRCP 41(a) dismissal
(7th Cir.)); Minks, 10/17/08 (reducing the jurys
damages award without offering a new trial); In re
Cygnus Telecomms., 8/19/08 (issues relating to SJ
proceedings (9th Cir.)); Research Corp. Techs.,
8/1/08 (9th Cir., evidentiary rulings); Amado,
2/26/08 (9th Cir.; FRCP 60(b)(6) motion relief
from judgment); Sitrick, 2/1/08 (9th Cir., waiver);
Innogenetics, 1/17/08 (7th Cir., forfeiture);
Mitutoyo, 9/5/07 (7th Cir., pleading FRCP
12(b)(6), failure to prosecute FRCP 41(b));
Walter Kidde, 3/2/07 (4th Cir., voluntary dismissal
motion under FRCP 41(a)(2)); Go Medical Indus.,
10/27/06; Aero Products, 10/2/06; Eolas
Technologies, 7/31/06; Louisville Bedding,
7/25/06; Intel, 7/14/06; Invitrogen, 10/5/05;
Ericsson, 8/04/05; Bowling, 4/11/05)

- Deference for regional circuit law is based


on the CAFCs concern for consistency of
future trial management (Eolas
Technologies, 7/31/06)

- Local court rules (of general applicability)


by definition not unique to patent law and
regional circuit law applied, vs. local rules

251
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
that apply only to patent cases (e.g., N.D.
Cal.)? (O2 Micro, 11/15/06)

- Local rules not only unique to patent


cases but also likely to directly affect
substantive patent law theories to be
presented at trial (e.g., infringement
contentions, and amendment thereof)
issues concerning the validity and
interpretation of such local patent
rules are intimately involved in the
substance of enforcement of the
patent right CAFC law applied (O2
Micro, 11/15/06)

- Regional circuit law not followed by the


CAFC when contrary to Supreme Court
precedent (Exigent Tech., 3/22/06)

- When the regional circuit, or state, has not


decided the issue, the CAFC determines,
predicts how the regional circuit, or state,
likely would decide the issue (Wi-Lan,
7/13/12 (predicting how the 9th Circuit
would have decided the scope of an express
extrajudicial (pre-litigation) waiver of
attorney-client privilege would have
looked to the heavy weight of authority from
the other circuits employing fairness
considerations to decide the scope of
waivers; see also J. Reyna, dubitante);
Corebrace, 5/22/09 (stating the rule for
when the states highest court has not
addressed the issue); Litecubes, 4/28/08
(CAFC predicted that the Eighth Circuit
would have found substantial evidence of
sales in the United States sufficient to
uphold the jurys finding of copyright

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
infringement); Walter Kidde, 3/2/07 (4th
Cir.); L&W, 12/14/06 (waiver doctrine);
Summit Technology, 1/26/06; Bowling,
4/11/05); See also Astrazeneca, 10/30/13
(nonprecedential predict how the regional
circuit (3rd Cir.) would decide issue in light
of the decisions of the circuits various
district courts, public policy, etc. citing
Panduit)

- Instructive to look to the law of other


circuits, courts (Delano Farms,
8/24/11 (looking to the analysis of
regional circuits where the CAFC had
not addressed sovereign immunity
issue); Corebrace, 5/22/09 (looking to
the law of the Court of Claims and the
California Supreme Court when the
issue had not been addressed under
Utah law); Litecubes, 4/28/08;
Summit Technology, 1/26/06)

Circumstantial evidence

- Circumstantial evidence to satisfy burden of proof;


hornbook law that direct evidence of a fact is not
necessary circumstantial evidence is not only sufficient,
but may also be more certain, satisfying and persuasive
than direct evidence (Jazz Photo, 2/28/06 (CIT)); See
also O2 Micro, 11/18/11 (nonprecedential stating rule,
where direct infringement for proving inducement was
shown by circumstantial evidence)

Claim construction (CC)

Claim terms reviewed on appeal

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
- Claim terms reviewed on appeal - CC or alleged
infringement of claim term(s) not addressed once
case decided on interpretation of another claim
term (Bayer Cropscience, 9/3/13 (the CAFC did
not construe claims where the patentees only
argument on appeal for infringement was that the
court adopt its proposed (and rejected) broad
construction citing Verizon and Leo Pharm.);
Saffran, 4/4/13 (J. Moore, dissenting
characterizing the courts construction of second
disputed claim term as dicta, where reversal of
infringement was mandated by reversal of the
district courts construction of a first disputed
claim term); Sandisk, 10/9/12 (claim construction
arguments relating to withdrawn claims were not
reviewable where they did not affect the final
judgment entered by the district court citing
MIT); Thorner, 2/1/12 (CAFC used its discretion in
considering claim term on appeal that was fully
briefed and argued below, distinguishing MIT);
Arlington Indus., 1/20/11; Erbe, 12/9/10 (n.3);
Intellectual Science, 12/15/09 (CAFC did not
address the district courts construction of claim
term where the patentee failed to show a genuine
issue of material fact to avoid SJ with respect to
another limitation addressed); Computer Docking
Station, 3/21/08 (second term not reviewed when
noninfringement decided based on first term);
Serio-Us Industries, 8/10/06; Panduit, 6/12/06;
Inpro II Licensing, 5/11/06; Exigent Tech.,
3/22/06; Boss Control (n.2), 6/8/05; Hoffer,
4/22/05); See also Fenner Investments, 3/15/10
(Order) (nonprecedential); Compare - all claim
terms on appeal should be reviewed, not just ones
needed to dispose of case (Honeywell, 6/22/06;
Inpro II Licensing, 5/11/06 (J. Newman, dissenting
citing Cardinal Chemical (S.C.)), plus other
CAFC cases, showing the conflict in the courts

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
decisions; not construing all disputed claim terms
on appeal, including those which the district court
construed broadly and thus may render the
claim(s) invalid, leaves a cloud of uncertainty on
the patent, its scope, and its validity); Hoffer,
4/22/05 (concurrence); Chimie, 4/11/05); See also
Amgen, 6/1/09 (nonprecedential not addressing
the construction of numerous other claim terms
appealed where none had any impact on the SJ of
noninfringement on appeal); Digene, 4/1/09
(nonprecedential other claim terms on appeal not
considered after the appellants concession of
noninfringement with respect to another term);
Contech, 2/13/09 (nonprecedential); Respironics,
12/16/08 (nonprecedential additional terms not
construed when they did not present any remaining
issues on remand)

- Additional terms considered

- CAFC construing additional term as


basis for noninfringement even
though construction of first term was
dispositive (Thorner, 2/1/12;
Decisioning.com, 5/7/08 (term
construed on appeal even though not
the basis of the district courts SJ of
noninfringement, because the CAFC
concluded the district court erred and
the term was identified by the parties
as a potentially-relevant term on
remand); Regents of U. Cal., 2/28/08
(done in the interest of judicial
efficiency, as term would be at issue
on remand since appeared in both
patents in suit); Honeywell, 5/25/07
(although only two of five contested
terms contributed to the SJ of

255
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
noninfringement, all terms were
construed on appeal, as the district
court discerned factual issues in
dipute regarding infringement of the
remaining terms); Honeywell,
6/22/06)

- Interpretation of other disputed claim


terms on appeal appropriate when
terms are likely to be at issue in a new
trial, or otherwise on remand (Deere,
12/4/12 (considering additional terms
where fully briefed on appeal and
may be important on remand); Apple,
10/11/12 (addressing claim
construction aspect of the district
courts likelihood of success analysis
in granting PI, because may become
important on remand); Aspex
Eyewear, 3/14/12; Thorner, 2/1/12;
Advanced Software Design, 6/2/11
(CAFC addressed construction of
term where may become important on
remand, and in the interest of judicial
economy); Arlington Indus., 1/20/11
(not construing additional terms
which required further briefing, and
also were at issue in a related appeal);
Verizon, 9/26/07); See also
Respironics, 12/16/08
(nonprecedential disputed claim
terms construed where remand was
necessary to reconsider infringement
and anticipation of patents)

- Withdrawn claims not reviewed on appeal


(Sandisk, 10/9/12 (CAFC lacked jurisdiction over

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
claims the patentee withdrew before the district
courts final judgment))

Claim terms must be in controversy

- Claim terms on appeal must be in controversy


only claim terms in controversy need be construed
(Fresenius, 9/10/09 (declining to consider claim
construction arguments where no reasons given
why a modified construction would affect the
infringement and/or validity judgments, citing
Jang rule); Jang, 7/15/08; Hakim, 2/23/07; MBO
Labs, 1/24/07; Serio-Us Industries, 8/10/06;
Nautilus Group, Order 2/16/06 (cross-appeal
containing unappealed CC rejected; See also
Cross appeals); NTP, 8/2/05; Sandisk, 7/8/05)

- CC is directed to claims or claim terms


whose meaning is disputed as applied to the
patentees invention in the context of the
accused device (Jang, 7/15/08; Hakim,
2/23/07)

- Accused product considered for context, in


order to focus claim construction on
disputed claim terms only (Jang, 7/15/08;
MIT, 9/13/06; Exigent Tech., 3/22/06) (See
also CLAIM CONSTRUCTION section)

- CAFC addressing only CC issues presented


by the judgment under review (Aspex
Eyewear, 3/14/12 (CAFC in the interest of
judicial economy exercised its discretion in
deciding CC issues presented by the parties
that were likely to be dispositive on remand
as to infringement, even though the district
courts CC rulings did not result in a

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
judgment of noninfringement); Thorner,
2/1/12 (CAFC exercised its discretion in
deciding CC of additional term citing
MIT); Miken Composites, 2/6/08; MIT,
9/13/06); See also E8 Pharmaceuticals,
11/6/13 (nonprecedential affirming (in
brief paragraph) noninfringement, basing
decision solely on its agreement with the
district courts construction of a single
phrase (randomly primed PCR-derived
RCG), and not reaching any other issues
raised on appeal)

- CAFC chose not to vacate district


courts construction of terms not on
appeal (Monsanto, 10/4/07)

- When no dispute as to the meaning of a term that


could affect the disputed issues of the litigation,
CC may not be necessary (Jang, 7/15/08 (referring
to the risk of rendering an advisory opinion as to
CC issues that do not actually affect the
infringement controversy between the parties,
citing Coffman (S.C.)); Hakim, 2/23/07)

- CAFC lacks the power to construe claim


terms not disputed by the parties (MBO
Labs, 1/24/07)

- CAFC reviewing the meaning of the district


courts CC, where no challenge to the CC
itself (Cordis, 9/28/11 (reviewing the
ordinary meaning of CC given to the jury
regarding claim term undulating and terms
crest and trough in the instruction))

- Party must propose alternative meanings for


terms that might affect claim validity, and

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
also explain why i.e., must tell CAFC why
claim terms are disputed (Hakim, 2/23/07)

CAFC adopting new CC remand or new trial necessary?

- Adopting new CC

- CAFC sustaining judgment based on CC not


relied on by the district court Nautilus
Group (MIT, 9/13/06)

- CAFC has authority to adopt entirely new


CC not proposed by either party (Bancorp
Services, 7/26/12 (using rule as basis for
construing claim terms in the first instance
on appeal); Marine Polymer, 3/15/12 (en
banc) (n.4 citing Exxon Chem. Patents)
but CAFC hesitant to do so (Kim, 9/20/06);
See also LSI Industries, 5/22/08
(nonprecedential CAFC appeared to adopt
new CCs sua sponte for multiple terms)

- CAFC has an independent obligation


to construe patent terms because of
this obligation, the CAFC need not
accept the constructions proposed by
either party, or that of the district
court, when it determines that all of
the constructions are incorrect
(Bancorp Services, 7/26/12 (using
rule as basis for construing claim
terms in the first instance on appeal
citing Praxair); Therasense, 1/25/10
(rejecting both the district courts
construction and patentees proposed
construction in affirming SJ of
noninfringement) [vacated on

259
2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
4/26/10, and reinstated by
Therasense, 5/25/11 (en banc)];
Praxair, 9/29/08 (also rejecting the
district courts construction as
incorrect))

- Whether remand, or new trial, is necessary

- Remand or new trial necessary? where the


CAFCs CC modified the district courts CC
- new trial regarding infringement or
invalidity may be necessary (Power
Integrations, 3/26/13 (remanding after
reversing the district courts CC for the
court to determine whether any new and
material issues on infringement or validity
were distinct and separable such that a
new trial limited only to those issues would
not unduly prejudice either party citing
Gasoline Prods. (S.C.); also ordering a new
trial to determine damages for both pre-
verdict and post-verdict direct infringement,
where the issues were distinct and separable
from other issues); Arcelormittal France,
11/30/12 (party seeking new trial must show
that they were prejudiced by the district
courts CC error Verizon; remanding for a
new trial on infringement and obviousness
based on the CAFCs new CC, where the
district courts CC error prejudiced the
patentee with respect to obviousness by
preventing the jury from properly
considering the patentees evidence of
commercial success); Dealertrack, 1/20/12
(remanding SJ of noninfringement after
modified CC); Markem-Imaje, 9/9/11
(remanding SJ of noninfringement after
modified CC); August Tech., 8/22/11

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
(vacating and remanding based on new CC);
In re NTP I, 8/1/11 (remanding to BPAI for
new validity determination based on
modified (narrower) construction by the
CAFC); Lexion Medical, 4/22/11 (district
court did not abuse discretion by permitting
additional factual (expert) testimony on
remand from new CC by the CAFC); Lazare
Kaplan, 12/22/10 (remand was necessary
where infringement by accused machines
could not be determined with any certainty
under the CAFCs new broader CC);
Laryngeal Mask, 9/21/10 (vacating and
remanding SJ of noninfringement based on
erroneous CC); Adams, 8/5/10 (vacating and
remanding from SJ of noninfringement after
broadening the claim construction); Silicon
Graphics, 6/4/10 (remanding after reversing
erroneous CC); Haemonetics, 6/2/10
(reversing incorrect CC and remanding);
Pressure Products, 3/24/10 (reversing
erroneous CC of means-plus-function
limitation and remanding); Therasense,
1/25/10 (SJ of noninfringement was still
appropriate under the correct construction)
[vacated on 4/26/10, and reinstated by
Therasense, 5/25/11 (en banc)]; Ultimax
Cement, 12/3/09 (vacating noninfringement
judgment and remanding after modifying
construction of term (anhydride)); Kara
Technology, 9/24/09 (remanding for the
district court to decide infringement in the
first instance based on the CAFCs broader
construction, so that alternative arguments
of noninfringement could be presented);
Cardiac Pacemakers, 8/19/09 (changed CC
did not permit new anticipation arguments
on remand where the CC was not the basis

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
for distinguishing the prior art); Linear
Tech., 5/21/09 (remanding for infringement
determination under the correct CC);
Praxair, 9/29/08 (remand necessary, as was
not a case in which the record was clear that
the accused device did or did not infringe);
Lucent Techs., 5/8/08 (vacate and remand);
Solomon Techs., 5/7/08 (remand not
necessary where an incorrect aspect of the
ITCs construction did not affect the courts
conclusion as to noninfringement); PSN
Illinois, 5/6/08 (no remand and affirming SJ
of noninfringement although concluding that
the district court construed the disputed term
too narrowly, because of no infringement
even under the correct CC); Verizon,
9/26/07 (new trial necessary); Cytologix,
9/21/05); See also Capital Machine, 4/15/13
(nonprecedential vacating SJ of
noninfringement and remanding after
correcting the district courts CC of several
terms, where was unclear from the district
courts final judgment whether the
construction of any one claim term was
case-dispositive); Harris, 1/17/13
(nonprecedential for new trial, must show
that district courts erroneous CC prejudiced
the validity case below - Eaton); Accentra,
1/4/13 (nonprecedential remanding for the
district court to consider obviousness
arguments in the first instance after
correcting the district courts claim
construction); Furnace Brook, 7/22/11
(nonprecedential J. OMalley, dissenting
applying collateral estoppel based on a prior
CAFC panel decision was improper where
the original panel should have remanded the
case after modifying the CC); Seiko Epson,

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
5/20/10 (nonprecedential vacating SJ of
invalidity and remanding after narrowing
CC); Ilight Technologies, 4/20/10
(nonprecedential modifying the district
courts CC and remanding for the jury to be
instructed that a hollow waveguide does not
infringe (as a matter of law due to a PH
disclaimer)); Smith & Nephew, 12/2/09
(nonprecedential reversing infringement
judgment and remanding for a new jury trial
where the district courts construction was
erroneous); Cartner, 6/17/09
(nonprecedential judgment of invalidity
based on lack of WD vacated and remanded
after modifying CC); Norgren, 5/26/09
(nonprecedential remanding for the ALJ to
decide obviousness in the first instance
under the correct claim construction); LSI
Industries, 5/22/08 (nonprecedential
remanded after new CC)

- Alternative basis for affirmance of


noninfringement, based on the
construction of another claim term
(Paragon Solutions, 5/22/09 (rejecting
alternative basis where fact issues
remained with respect to the other
claim term))

- Affirming jury verdict despite change


in CC, where the jury verdict in view
of the modified CC is supported by
substantial evidence (Function Media,
2/13/13)

- Where an infringement verdict relies


on an incorrect construction of the
disputed claim terms, the CAFC may

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
grant JMOL or order a new trial to
correct the error, depending on the
degree of difference between the
incorrect construction and the correct
construction; if no reasonable jury
could have found infringement under
the correct claim construction, the
CAFC may reverse a district courts
denial of JMOL without remand
Harris (Saffran, 4/4/13 (reversing
denial of JMOL of noninfringement,
and holding no infringement as a
matter of law based on the correct
CC); 800 Adept, 8/29/08 (reversing
the trial courts judgment of
infringement, which was based on an
improper jury instruction and
incorrect claim construction); Finisar,
4/18/08 (holding erroneous
construction of one term harmless
error and of another term requiring
vacatur and remand of the
infringement verdict)); See also
Harris, 1/17/13 (nonprecedential
stating rule, citing Finisar, and
remanding for further consideration of
infringement in view of the correct
CC where noninfringing feature was
only an option of the accused system);
Smith & Nephew, 12/2/09
(nonprecedential reversing
infringement judgment, while
remanding where [r]easonable jurors
could find infringement even under
the revised claim construction);
Lexion Medical, 8/28/08
(nonprecedential nullifying and
vacating/remanding jury verdict of

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
infringement because of incorrect
claim construction); Heuft
Systemtechnik, 6/25/08
(nonprecedential reversing the
district courts denial of motion
JMOL of noninfringement and
remanding with instructions to enter
judgment in favor of the accused
infringer where noninfringement was
undisputed based on the correct
construction)

District court must resolve CC disputes, which CC must be


followed

- District court must construe the meaning and


scope of disputed claim terms Q of law -
required by Markman (en banc) (O2 Micro,
4/3/08)

- Court, not the jury must resolve CC disputes


when the parties raise an actual dispute
regarding the proper scope of claims, the
court, not the jury, must resolve that dispute
Markman (en banc) (explaining why
judges are better suited to find the acquired
meaning of patent terms) (Function Media,
2/13/13 (no O2 Micro problem where the
case was like Verizon, and not O2 Micro,
because the issue was whether improper
arguments, not questions of claim scope,
were submitted to the jury); Lazare Kaplan,
12/22/10 (rejecting argument that the trial
judge left the jury to construe term rigid
frame by providing dictionary definitions
of the terms along with reading the claim
language); Finjan, 11/4/10 (O2 Micro rule

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2008-2013 Michael G. Sullivan
was inapplica