This morning the Federal Circuit issued a precedential opinion in a patent case appealed from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board and two nonprecedential opinions in cases appealed from the Court of Federal Claims and the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. In addition, the court issued two nonprecedential orders granting petitions for writs of mandamus ordering the Western District of Texas to transfer patent cases. Finally, the Federal Circuit issued a Rule 36 judgment. Here are the introductions to the opinions and orders and a link to the Rule 36 judgment.
Mobility Workx, LLC v. Unified Patents, LLC (Precedential)
Mobility Workx (“Mobility”) appeals a decision of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“Board”) determining that claims 1, 2, 4, 5, and 7 of U.S. Patent No. 8,213,417 (the “’417 patent”) were unpatentable as obvious. In addition to requesting a remand under United States v. Arthrex, Inc., 141 S. Ct. 1970 (2021), and challenging the merits of the Board’s decision, Mobility raises for the first time on appeal several additional constitutional challenges, including a challenge to the structure of the Board. We first address these other constitutional challenges because a determination that the Board is unconstitutionally structured or that the proceedings are otherwise unconstitutional would dispose of the case and make consideration of the Arthrex issue or the merits unnecessary.
We conclude that Mobility’s constitutional arguments are without merit. Without reaching the merits of the Board’s decision, in light of Arthrex, we remand to the Acting Director to determine whether to grant rehearing.
Straw v. United States (Nonprecedential)
In Appeal No. 21-1597, Mr. Straw appeals a Claims Court decision dismissing his complaint for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The underlying complaint sought $3 million for four alleged judicial takings of his “federal law license,” citing the four reciprocal district court suspensions of his admission to practice.
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In Appeal No. 21-1598, Mr. Straw challenges a Claims Court decision dismissing a separate complaint for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. This complaint sought approximately $1.6 million for a federal district court “scheme” that led to the Indiana Supreme Court’s suspension of his law license. Mr. Straw alleges that four district courts colluded to revoke his law license by uniformly referring to his lawsuits as “frivolous” in dismissal orders.
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The Claims Court does not have the jurisdiction to review these district court decisions, and we therefore uphold both dismissals.
Ibkul Ubhot Ltd. v. Alfwear, Inc. (Nonprecedential)
IBKUL UBHOT LTD. appeals a Trademark Trial and Appeal Board decision sustaining Alfwear, Inc.’s opposition to registration of a mark, “IBKÜL.” Alfwear, Inc. v. IBKUL UBHOT LTD., Opposition No. 91233985, 2020 WL 3429163, at *1 (T.T.A.B. June 2, 2020). Although Alfwear alleged consumers would likely confuse IBKÜL with four of Alfwear’s registered marks, the Board considered confusion with respect to only one of those marks, “KÜHL.” Id. at *8. After the Board’s decision and while this appeal was pending, the KÜHL mark was cancelled because Alfwear failed to file a declaration of use under 15 U.S.C. § 1058. The parties agree that cancellation necessarily impacts the Board’s findings. Accordingly, we vacate and remand for the Board to reconsider its findings in light of the cancellation.
In re Netscout Systems, Inc. (Nonprecedential Order)
NetScout Systems, Inc., petitions for a writ of mandamus directing the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas to transfer this action to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. PacSec3, LLC, opposes the petition and moves for leave to file its response out of time. NetScout replies. For the following reasons, we grant the petition.
In re Pandora Media, LLC (Nonprecedential Order)
Pandora Media, LLC, petitions for a writ of mandamus directing the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas to transfer this action to the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. Bluebonnet Internet Media Services, LLC opposes. Pandora replies. We conclude that the court’s denial of Pandora’s motion to transfer amounts to a clear abuse of discretion. We therefore grant mandamus directing transfer.