This week, the Federal Circuit issued its opinion in Monk v. Tran, a veterans case we have been following because it attracted an amicus brief. Judge Chen authored a unanimous panel opinion affirming in part a decision of the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims and dismissing in part the appeal as moot. Specifically, the Federal Circuit agreed that a petition for a writ of mandamus filed at the Veterans Court was moot with respect to several veterans because, after the filing the petition but before the Veterans Court’s disposition of the petition, those veterans received decisions by the Board of Veterans Appeals. The Federal Circuit similarly dismissed as moot another veteran’s appeal because, by the time of the Federal Circuit’s disposition of his appeal, he had received a Board decision on the merits of his case. This is our opinion summary.
Here is an update on recent activity at the Supreme Court in cases decided by the Federal Circuit.
- Two response and reply briefs were filed with the Court by the United States and by Smith & Nephew in a case that has been granted certiorari, United States v. Arthrex, Inc.
- Two amicus briefs were filed with the Court: the first by the New York Intellectual Property Law Association (NYIPLA) in American Axle & Manufacturing, Inc. v. Neapco Holdings LLC, and the second by a non-profit advocacy organization, US Inventor, Inc., in Akeva L.L.C. v. Nike, Inc.
- One new waiver of right to respond was filed by Iancu in Samaranayake v. Iancu.
- The Supreme Court denied the petition for writ of certiorari in the case of InfoBionic, Inc. v. Cardionet, LLC.
Here are the details.
Here is an update on recent en banc activity at the Federal Circuit. Telephonic oral argument is scheduled next week in an en banc veterans case, Arellano v. Wilkie. As for patent cases, petitions were filed in four cases raising questions related to an award of attorney’s fees, eligible subject matter, deference to findings of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, and standing. In addition, a new response was filed arguing against the grant of a petition raising questions related to injunctive relief. Here are the details.
- Federal Circuit Judge Calls High Court IP Decisions “Inconsistent” – At a conference on Thursday, Judge Raymond Chen noted that the Supreme Court’s policy towards novelty in the patent-eligibility inquiry seemed to be at odds with the Court’s decisions.
- Intel Trial Will Stay in Waco as Federal Circuit Declines to Weigh in – Judge Alan Albright will be able to hear the case involving VLSI Technology and Intel in Waco in February after the Federal Circuit’s decision in In re Intel Corp.
- Iancu Leaves Pro-Patentee Legacy as USPTO Director – Andrei Iancu stepped down on Wednesday after three years of instituting policies that favored patentees and that clarified USPTO procedures.
Here’s the latest.
The Federal Circuit did not publish any opinions this morning on its website. The court, however, did issue a nonprecedential order on January 21 that went uncovered on the blog. In the order, the court denied a request for a writ of mandamus blocking the transfer of a patent case from Austin to Waco, Texas. Here is text from that order.
Next week, in an en banc session of the court, the Federal Circuit will hear arguments in Arellano v. Wilkie. In this veterans case, the court will consider the availability of equitable tolling in the context of disability benefits based on applications filed within one year from the date of the veteran’s discharge or release. In particular, the court will consider three related questions: (1) whether a presumption in favor of equitable tolling applies to 38 U.S.C. § 5110(b)(1), which relates to disability benefits; (2) if a presumption did apply, whether it would be rebutted by evidence that Congress did not intend an implicit exception for equitable tolling to be read into 38 U.S.C. § 5110; and (3) if the court were to hold that a presumption applies to section 5110(b)(1), whether that holding would result in the application of the same presumption to other provisions of 38 U.S.C. § 5110. This is our argument preview.
- PTAB Axes 2 Uniloc Patents, Trims Another In Tech Giant Row – The Patent Trial and Appeal Board handed down three decisions invalidating Uniloc patents under the theory that the patent claims were obvious.
- U.S. Supreme Court rebuffs Merck appeal in hepatitis C patent fight with Gilead – The Supreme Court declined to revive a $2.54 billion jury verdict for Merck after the Federal Circuit found that Merck’s patent claims concerning a family of compounds used to treat hepatitis C were overly broad.
- Fed. Circ. Won’t Undo PTAB Rulings On Motorola Patents – On Tuesday, in a trio of unanimous opinions, the Federal Circuit affirmed the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s decisions that upheld Motorola patents.