Here is an update on recent activity at the Supreme Court in cases decided by the Federal Circuit.
- The Supreme Court received two new petitions for writ of certiorari in Christy, Inc. v. United States, and in Wynkoop v. Department of Defense.
- One new brief in response to the petition was filed with the Court by Apple in Iancu v. Fall Line Patents, LLC.
- One new amicus brief was filed with the Court in American Axle & Manufacturing, Inc. v. Neapco Holdings LLC by the Alliance of U.S. Startups & Inventors for Jobs.
Here are the details.
There is no new activity to report.
The Supreme Court received two new petitions for writ of certiorari.
In Christy, Inc. v. United States, Christy asked the Court to review the following two questions:
- “When a duly-issued patent is invalidated through a post-grant review process (such as an IPR), must compensation be paid under the Takings Clause?”
- “When a duly-issued patent is invalidated through a post-grant review process (such as an IPR), should the issuance and maintenance fees that were demanded by the government by mistake be returned?”
In Wynkoop v. Department of Defense, Wynkoop (pro se) asked the Court to review the following four questions:
- “Can the Federal Government violate a Federal Employee’s 5th Amendment right by depriving a federal employee of his or her property right (job) without due process-the right to respond to the action prior to removal from federal service?”
- “Can a Federal Government employee be terminated twice for the same offense, and can the Federal government add new evidence that was 1 year and 2 months old after a removal?”
- “Can the Government prevail if they fail or refuse to defend my 8-million-dollar whistleblowing complaint? Thus far, this issue has not been defended by the Federal Government?”
- “Are Federal Arbitrators, Administrative Law Judges, and Federal Appellate Court Judges under any obligations to comply and enforce such regulations as 5 C.F.R. 752.404 (g) when handling administrative cases?”
In Iancu v. Fall Line Patents, LLC, Apple filed its brief in response to the petition for writ of certiorari. Apple takes the position that the petition should be held as pending until the Court makes its decision Arthrex. Apple argues that
This Court has granted certiorari to review Arthrex and, if it ultimately reverses the Federal Circuit’s decision, the ruling will almost certainly require vacatur of the remand order in Apple’s consolidated appeals. Accordingly, Apple respectfully supports the government’s request to hold the petition until this Court has issued its judgment in United States v. Arthrex, Inc., No. 19-1434, and the consolidated cases (Nos. 19-1452 and 19 1458), and then dispose of this case as appropriate in light of this Court’s decision in Arthrex.
One new amicus brief was filed with the Court in American Axle & Manufacturing, Inc. v. Neapco Holdings LLC by the Alliance of U.S. Startups & Inventors for Jobs (USIJ) in support of the petition for writ of certiorari. USIJ contends that
Worse than its dangerous and unnecessary expansion of what was intended as a ‘narrow exception’ to the statutory language of Section 101, the Federal Circuit is hopelessly divided as to a proper interpretation of this Court’s rulings in [Mayo] and [Alice], among others. Differing points of view among the several judges of that court on this critical issue – some of such views being irreconcilable with one another – is magnified many times over for the hundreds of district court judges hearing patent cases in our country and who are even more confused in trying to sort out what is required of them. The disparity of views among the various judges of the Federal Circuit also means that outcomes on eligibility often are dependent on the specific panel of judges assigned to a case, with disastrous uncertainty facing litigants on both sides. . . . USIJ strongly urges this Court to vacate the panel majority decision and to establish some boundaries on the extent to which lower court judges are free to find that inventions lack patent eligibility based on judicially created exceptions to the clear statutory language of Section 101. Otherwise, the certainty and reliability required for a viable patent system will be increasingly in doubt.