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IP Wise

Making Business Wise About Intellectual Property Litigation

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Patent Office Employees Found To Have Wasted Their Time, Taxpayer Money

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According to a report issued today by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Commerce, hundreds of thousands of the claimed work hours of patent examiners at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office cannot be reasonably accounted for. After a minute–by–minute review of data for 94% of all patent examiners’ claimed...

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The Role of Design Patents in Patent Troll’s Litigation Designs

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The business world snapped to attention when Apple obtained a $400 million verdict from Samsung in a dispute largely focused on design patents covering how smart–phones look. The Supreme Court has agreed to take up the question of how to assign damages for design patent infringement—that is, how to distinguish between the value of the...

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Permission Granted

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With a hat tip towards Law360 for noting that Judge Gilstrap may have quietly done away with his notorious “permission slip” requirement for filing a summary judgment motion. While previous docket control order templates required a party to submit a five-page letter brief seeking permission to file a summary judgment motion, the latest incarnation simply...

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Goodbye, Ruby Sands….

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In a short but scathing order, Judge Gilstrap sent frequent patent lawsuit flier Ruby Sands, LLC packing, in granting a motion to dismiss Ruby’s amended complaint on grounds that it “plainly fails to state a claim for relief that is plausible on its face.” The Court found that Ruby’s direct infringement pleadings “are constructed upon...

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The Results Are In: Patent Quality Can Improve

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The Government Accountability Office (GAO) released two reports on the Patent & Trademark Office (PTO) recently, including one on patent quality and clarity. As to such report, the GAO recommends that the PTO: Develop a consistent definition of patent quality, and clearly articulate this definition in agency documents and other guidance. Develop measurable, quantifiable goals...

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Too Little, Too Late?

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On June 23, 2016, the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) issued a decision invalidating one of Converse’s trademarks for its iconic Chuck Taylor shoes (and issuing an exclusion order prohibiting the import of any shoes that infringe certain of Converse’s other trademarks). It is the former that is of particular interest here. Though Converse had...

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Supreme Court To Decide Which Exports Can Trigger Patent Infringement Liability For World–Wide Sales

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The Supreme Court term is closing this week with a flurry of long-awaited, contested opinions on abortion, gun control, and government corruption. But intellectual property–minded court–watchers found interest in the Court’s decision to grant cert. (in part) in the case of Life Technologies v. Promega. While U.S. patent law is generally limited to domestic conduct,...

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Supreme Court Affirms Patent Office Procedures For Inter Partes Review

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Although the political winds in the Senate continue to blow against the confirmation of a ninth justice, the oddities of an eight–person Supreme Court have not prevented the court from deciding patent cases in the past week. Today brings the opinion of the Court in Cuozzo Speed Technologies v. Lee, in which the high court...

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Supreme Court Offers Guidance On Standard For Obtaining Fees In Copyright Cases

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For the second time this week, the Supreme Court unanimously clarified the legal standard for obtaining certain relief in intellectual property cases. In today’s opinion in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Justice Kagan, writing for the Court, explained the analysis trial courts should engage in to determine whether and when to award attorneys’ fees...

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Supreme Court Rejects “Unduly Rigid” Federal Circuit Test For Enhanced Damages

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There is a certain Groundhog Day–effect to many recent Supreme Court patent cases. The Supreme Court takes up a case challenging a legal test the Federal Circuit has created, rejects that test, and sends the case back to the lower court with an admonition not to be too rigid in its approach. In so doing,...

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