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US - patents: 2011 federal circuit patent rulings

01-02-2012

Paul J. Sutton

Twenty eleven was an extremely busy year for the US ‘patent court’.

The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit heard dozens of patent appeals in 2011, and its decisions have had far-reaching consequences for inventors, patent practitioners and industry. In nearly half these appeals, the court overturned or vacated, in whole or in part, the lower district court’s decision, granting a win to the appellant.

Appellant victories

  • Reversed a California district court’s award for discovery and copying costs, but affirmed the award insofar as depositions were concerned, in Synopsys v Ricoh Company.
     
  • Reversed a Delaware district court’s refusal to award Robert Bosch a permanent injunction against Pylon Manufacturing.
     
  • Reversed and remanded a California district court’s dismissal of Powertech Technology’s declaratory judgment action against Tessera based on lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
     
  • Remanded Hemcon’s equitable intervening rights claim against Marine Polymer Technologies to the lower court in New Hampshire.
     
  • Upheld a Delaware district court’s finding of patent invalidity and noninfringement in Cordance v Amazon.com.
     
  • Granted mandamus, directing a California district court to vacate its order that disqualified law firm Floyd & Buss LLP in Shared Memory Graphics v Nintendo.
     
  • Reversed a California district court’s dismissal of Ultramerical’s patent lawsuit against Hulu, YouTube and WildTangent, holding that the patent-in-suit claims a “process” within the meaning of US patent law.
     
  • Vacated a New Hampshire district court’s summary judgment of noninfringement in Markem-Imaje v Zipher and Videojet Technologies.
     
  • Reversed in part, affirmed in part and vacated in part (on remand from the US Supreme Court) Classen Immunotherapies v Biogen Idec, Glaxosmithkline, Merck & Co. relating to patent eligibility.
     
  • Reversed a Tennessee district court’s summary judgment of invalidity in AIA Engineering v Magotteaux International S/A.
     
  • Affirmed the denial of Star Scientific’s JMOL (judgment as a matter of law), but reversed the Maryland district court’s denial of Star Scientific’s JMOL on validity, in its suit against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company.
     
  • Reversed in part, affirmed in part, and remanded California grape grower Delano Farms’ royalty suit against The California Table Grape Commission and the US Department of Agriculture.
     
  • Vacated a Minnesota district court’s judgment of patent infringement, damages award and an injunction in August Technology v Camtek.
     
  • Reversed in part, affirmed in part, and vacated in part a Texas district court’s holding that MHL Teck has standing to assert three patents in suit and a summary judgment of non-infringement by Nissan Motor Co. et al.
     
  • Reversed a Georgia district court’s summary judgment of patent invalidity in CBT Flint Partners v Return Path and Cisco Ironport Systems.
     
  • Reversed in part a New York district court’s invalidity summary judgment involving Myriad Genetics’ human genetics patents, in a suit brought byseveral medical organisations, researchers, genetics counsellors and patients.
     
  • Reversed in part and affirmed in part a Florida district court’s decision in Creative Compounds v Starmark Laboratories.
     
  • Reversed a Delaware district court’s patent claim construction in Inventio AG v Th yssenkrupp Elevator Americas et al.
     
  • Remanded to a Minnesota district court its damages and attorney fees determination, and affirmed a Spectralytics infringement judgment against Cordis.
     
  • Reversed a Missouri district court’s non-infringement finding in Advanced Software Design’s patent suit against Fiserv.
     
  • Reversed a California district court’s inequitable conduct/patent unenforceability decisions, greatly limiting this defence, in Therasense v Becton, Dickinson et al.
     
  • Reversed a Georgia district court’s dismissal of Arris Group’s declaratory judgment suit against British Telecommunications, based on lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
     
  • Reversed a Delaware district court’s fi nding that Allergan Inc’s patents were infringed by Apotex and Exela Pharmsci.
     
  • Reversed a Delaware district court’s sanction dismissing Rambus’ defence in its suit against Micron Technology, but affirmed the court’s finding that Rambus spoliated documents.
     
  • Reversed a Delaware district court’s invalidation of Wellman’s patents in its suit against Eastman Chemical.
     
  • Reversed an Ohio invalidation of Crown Packaging Technology’s patents in its suit against Ball Metal Beverage Container.
     
  • Granted a petition for a writ of mandamus to Verizon Business Network Services and affi liates, requiring a Texas district court to permit the transfer of the case to a more convenient forum.
     
  • Vacated a Louisiana district court’s summary judgment of non-obviousness in Innovation Toys v MGA Entertainment.
     
  • Reversed an Ohio district court’s award for attorney fees after a finding of wilful patent infringement in Old Reliable Wholesale v Cornell Corp.
     
  • Granted a petition for a writ of mandamus, ordering an Illinois district court to dismiss the complaint with leave to amend, in In Re BP Lubricants USA.
     
  • Reversed a California district court’s summary judgment of invalidity of Hologic’s patent, which was asserted against Senorx.
     
  • Reversed a Texas district court’s award to Centocor Ortho Biotech and NYU for $1.67 billion in damages against Abbott Laboratories and affi liates, and invalidated the patent in suit.
     
  • Reversed a Texas district’s court’s dismissal of ABB’s declaratory judgment complaint against Cooper Industries.
     
  • Reversed an Indiana district court’s summary judgment of noninfringement in Centillian Data Systems v Qwest Communications.
     
  • Vacated a Pennsylvania district’s court’s summary judgment of noninfringement in Arlington Industries v Bridgeport Fittings.
     
  • Vacated a Michigan district court’s dismissal of a legal malpractice complaint in patent dispute Warrior Sports v Dickinson Wright.
     
  • Reversed a Kentucky district court’s award for attorney fees after a non-infringement finding in Ilor v Google

Appellant losses


federal circuit, myriad, amazon, us patents

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