This morning the Federal Circuit issued one nonprecedential opinion in a patent case, one nonprecedential opinion in a veterans case, one nonprecedential opinion in a government contracts case, and one nonprecedential erratum. Here are the introductions to the opinions and the text of the erratum.
In Re Nomula (Nonprecedential)
Jagadeshwar Reddy Nomula filed U.S. Patent Application Nos. 13/908,992 and 13/089,772, which claim systems and methods for recommending gifts using Internet-based information of the gift recipient. The examiner rejected all pending claims as unpatentable for obviousness, and the Board upheld the examiner’s obviousness rejections. We affirm.
Halim v. United States (Nonprecedential)
In 2006 and 2007, plaintiff Ahmed Halim purchased several apartment complexes from the Department of Housing and Urban Affairs (“HUD”) at foreclosure sales in various cities. Mr. Halim entered into a series of contracts with HUD relating to his purchase and operation of the properties. Disputes arose with regard to Mr. Halim’s proposal to self-manage one of the properties and his failure to complete repairs at the other three properties and to maintain the housing units at those properties in habitable condition. Based on its determination that Mr. Halim had breached his contractual obligations regarding the repair and maintenance of three of the properties and his failure to make satisfactory arrangements for the management of the fourth property, HUD retained funds that Mr. Halim had deposited pursuant to the contracts. Mr. Halim filed this action in the United States Court of Federal Claims (“the Claims Court”) challenging HUD’s retention of those funds. The Claims Court granted summary judgment to the government with respect to Mr. Halim’s claims relating to all four properties. We affirm.
Brown v. Wilkie (Nonprecedential)
Bobbi Brown claims entitlement to death benefits based on her marriage to veteran Paul W. Brown. Because the Browns divorced approximately seven months before Mr. Brown passed away, the Department of Veterans Affairs (“VA”) and the Board of Veterans’ Appeals (“the Board”) both denied Ms. Brown’s claim. See Brown v. Wilkie, No. 17-2300, 2018 WL 6036581, at *1 (Vet. App. Nov. 19, 2018). Specifically, they concluded that the governing statute and regulation—38 U.S.C. § 101(3) and 38 C.F.R. § 3.50(b)—required a claimant to prove she and the veteran were married as of the time of death in order to qualify as a surviving spouse entitled to receive death benefits. Id. at *2–3. For different reasons, the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (“Veterans Court”) affirmed the denial of benefits to Ms. Brown. Id. at *4–5.
On appeal, Ms. Brown presents three primary arguments. First, she contends that that the VA, the Board, and the Veterans Court misinterpreted 38 U.S.C. § 101(3)—the statute governing who is considered a “surviving spouse” for purposes of eligibility for death benefits. Appellant’s Br. 12. In Ms. Brown’s view, because her divorce was the result of alleged domestic violence perpetrated by Mr. Brown, she qualifies as a surviving spouse because the statute provides an exception in cases “where there was a separation which was due to the misconduct of, or procured by, the veteran without the fault of the spouse.” Id. (quoting 38 U.S.C. § 101(3)). Second, she argues that the Veterans Court erred by reviewing under a higher-than-required standard the VA’s failure to obtain Mr. Brown’s treatment records, which Ms. Brown considers relevant to her allegations of abuse. Id. at 8–11. Finally, Ms. Brown argues that, on appeal, the Veterans Court impermissibly made a factual finding in the first instance that she was not a victim of domestic abuse. Id. at 29–30. For the reasons stated below, we affirm.
Eagle Pharmaceuticals Inc. v. Slayback Pharma LLC (Nonprecedential)
Please make the following change:
On page 1, the law firm affiliation of Ms. Constance Huttner is changed from “Budd Larner, P.C., Short Hills, NJ” to “Windels Marx Lane & Mittendorf LLP, Madison, NJ”