This morning the Federal Circuit released a precedential opinion in a patent case appealed from the District of Delaware. The case addresses issues related to direct infringement and inducement of infringement. Notably, Judge Newman wrote a dissenting opinion. The court also issued two nonprecedential opinions in employment and government contract cases appealed from the Merit Systems Protection Board and the Court of Federal Claims respectively. Finally, the Federal Circuit issued an erratum. Here are the introductions to the opinions and a link to the erratum.
Roche Diagnostics Corp. v. Meso Scale Diagnostics, LLC (Precedential)
Roche Diagnostics Corporation and BioVeris Corporation (collectively, “Roche”) appeal a final judgment from the District of Delaware sustaining the jury’s verdict that Roche violated exclusive license rights belonging to Meso Scale Diagnostics, LLC (“Meso”) by directly infringing one patent claim and inducing infringement of three other patent claims. We affirm on direct infringement, reverse on induced infringement, vacate the damages award, and remand for a new trial on damages. On Meso’s cross-appeal, we vacate the district court’s judgment of noninfringement with respect to three additional patents and remand.
NEWMAN, Circuit Judge, dissenting.
I respectfully dissent. Roche cannot infringe patents it owns.
In 2007, Roche purchased the patents in suit from IGEN International, via IGEN’s patent-holding company BioVeris Corporation. Meso Scale Diagnostics (MSD or Meso) does not own or have exclusive rights to these patents, and has no right to control their use in areas outside of the designated Research Program—as I shall discuss.
I focus on the three patents found infringed at trial: U.S. Patent No. 5,935,779 (“the ’779 patent”), U.S. Patent No. 6,165,729 (“the ’729 patent”), and U.S. Patent No. 6,808,939 (“the ’939 patent”). The jury found direct infringement of the ’939 patent and induced infringement of the ’779 and ’729 patents. The majority reverses the judgment of induced infringement on statute of limitations grounds, but affirms direct infringement of the ’939 patent. However, Roche cannot infringe these patents, directly or by inducement, for Roche has owned these patents since 2007.
Holmes-Smith v. Merit Systems Protection Board (Nonprecedential)
Ms. Holmes-Smith sought monetary benefits for an injury that she alleges resulted from her work as an employee of the Department of Veterans Affairs. After her claim was denied by the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (“OWCP”), Ms. Holmes-Smith appealed the decision to the Merit Systems Protection Board (“Board”). The Board dismissed her appeal for lack of jurisdiction under 5 U.S.C. § 8128(b). Ms. Holmes-Smith now appeals to this court. We affirm the Board’s dismissal because the Board properly determined that it lacked jurisdiction.
Emiabata v. United States (Nonprecedential)
This appeal involves Philip Emiabata’s second action against the United States brought to seek damages for the termination of his mail delivery contract by the U.S. Postal Service (USPS). He brought the first action in the Court of Federal Claims (Claims Court), which granted the United States summary judgment, a judgment we affirmed. Emiabata v. United States, 139 Fed. Cl. 418 (2018) (Emiabata I), aff’d, 792 F. App’x 931 (Fed. Cir. 2019) (Emiabata II). In the present action, initially brought in district court but transferred to the Claims Court, Mr. Emiabata repeats his earlier challenge to the termination of his contract and adds a new claim that the USPS improperly put him on a “suspension list” of persons prevented from obtaining USPS contracts (or subcontracts). The Claims Court concluded that the termination claims were barred by the doctrine of res judicata (claim preclusion) and that it lacked jurisdiction over the suspension claims; it dismissed the termination claims while transferring the suspension claims to the United States District Court for the District of Vermont. Emiabata v. United States, 151 Fed. Cl. 610, 613 (2020) (Emiabata III). We affirm the Claims Court’s dismissal of the termination claims, and we dismiss Mr. Emiabata’s appeal of his transferred suspension claims because we lack jurisdiction to review the transfer.