Here is a report on recent news and commentary related to the Federal Circuit and its cases. Today’s report highlights the Supreme Court’s rejection of the petition in Athena Diagnostics, Inc. v. Mayo Collaborative Services, LLC and oral arguments heard by the Federal Circuit in Sanford Health Plan v. United States and American Institute for International Steel v. United States.
At the Claims Journal, Susan Decker authored an article about the Supreme Court’s rejection of the petition in Athena Diagnostics, Inc. v. Mayo Collaborative Services, LLC. Decker reported that Athena “sought to restore its patent for a test to detect the presence of an autoimmune disease,” but the denial of the petition left “in legal limbo” not only Athena but also other “companies that discover ways to diagnose and treat diseases based on patients’ unique characteristics.” As reported by Decker, “the Federal Circuit in July split 7-5 on whether any medical diagnostic could be patented.” Decker commented that “[l]awyers and experts had seen the case as the best shot at getting the high court to take up the issue after what Athena lawyer Seth P. Waxman called an ‘unprecedented cry for help'” from the Federal Circuit. (Yesterday we also reported on the denial of the petition.)
Lauren Clason reported for Roll Call that “the Federal Circuit heard arguments Thursday,” in Sanford Health Plan v. United States, “over whether the government owes health insurance plans money through subsidies mandated under the 2010 health care law, which created so-called cost-sharing subsidies for insurers to reduce low-income consumers’ out-of-pocket costs.” Clason noted that President Trump “halted the subsidies in 2017,” resulting in an increase in premiums and that “Alisa Klein, an attorney for the Justice Department, said Congress knew that not appropriating the subsidies would increase premiums, which would then increase correlating premium tax credit subsidies.” (We provided an argument preview in this case last week, and plan to post our argument recap later this week.)
Kat Lucero commented for the American Journal of Transportation on the oral arguments heard by the Federal Circuit in American Institute for International Steel v. United States. Lucero wrote that the Federal Circuit examined “[t]he constitutionality of a Cold War-era US tariff power” which was “actively invoked by President Donald Trump to impose national security duties.” Lucero highlighted arguments by both sides. According to Lucero, Alan Morrison, counsel for the American Institute for International Steel, took issue with the Government’s position that presidential action under the statute in question is not judicially reviewable. Lucero pointed out that Tara Hogan, an attorney for the federal government, countered that “the lower court may ‘review presidential action . . . if the president . . . clearly misconstrues the governing statute where there’s a significant procedural violation.'” (Last week we posted an argument preview for this case, and we also plan to post an argument recap later this week.)