CPLRG™ 0078 - American Invents Act No.3 - Dec. 4, 2011

AIA Analysis: Section-by-Section Review of America Invents Act with Cross-References

The American Invents Act contains 37 sections.  The sections vary greatly in relative length, importance and generality.  For example, Section 3 makes a fundamental change in the priority principle by substituting a “first inventor to file” principle for the historic “first to invent” principle.  In contrast, Section 24 names the new Detroit satellite office of the Patent and Trademark Office.

The substantive amendments to the patent statutes  made by the AIA are best understood against the background of existing law.  Attached is a draft section on the AIA, organized section-by-section.  For each section, it analyzes the changes in the Patent Act made by the AIA and their impact, together with cross references to discussions of the affected subject area in the Chisum on Patents treatise.  The AIA Analysis is here:  AIAOverview

CPLRG™ 0068 - Therasense, Inc. v. Becton, Dickinson & Co. - May. 25, 2011

Therasense, Inc. v. Becton, Dickinson & Co., — F.3d —-, 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 10590 (Fed. Cir. 2011) (en banc) (RADER, Newman, Lourie, Linn, Moore & Reyna; O’MALLEY, concurring-in-part & dissenting-in-part; BRYSON, Gajarsa, Dyk & Prost, dissenting) Therasense.05252011.fc

MAJOR ISSUES: inequitable conduct rendering patents unenforceable; raising standards for materiality and intent; “but for” materiality; no “sliding scale”; no materiality required for affirmative egregious misconduct

COMMENTS: In a milestone decision, the Federal Circuit, sitting en banc, reviewed the standard of materiality for the inequitable conduct defense to patent infringement. In a majority opinion for six of the participating eleven judges, Chief Judge Rader “tighten[ed] the standards for finding both intent and materiality in order to redirect a doctrine that has been overused to the detriment of the public.”  On intent, the majority (1) rejected a “sliding scale” approach under which “a weak showing of intent may be found sufficient based on a strong showing of materiality, and vice versa,” and (2) restricted the circumstances under which the necessary intent to deceive the PTO may be inferred.  On materiality, the majority (1) adopted a “but-for” standard of materiality, (2) recognized “an exception in cases of affirmative egregious misconduct,” and (3) eschewed prior decisions that relied on the PTO’s Rule 56 definitions of materiality.

For a preliminary, critical evaluation of Therasense, see below.

CROSS REFERENCES:  On the inequitable conduct defense and its history, see Chisum on Patents 19.03.  For case law on the defense, see Chisum, Patent Law Digest 4000.

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