Opinions

Opinions & Orders – January 20, 2022

This morning the Federal Circuit issued three precedential opinions. The first comes in a veterans case appealed from the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims; the second comes in a takings case appealed from the Court of Federal Claims; and the third comes in a military discharge case appealed from the Court of Federal Claims. The Court also issued five nonprecedential opinions in various cases appealed from the Court of Federal Claims, the Merit Systems Protection Board, and the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. Here are the introductions to the opinions.

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Opinions

Opinions & Orders – January 19, 2022

This morning the Federal Circuit issued a precedential opinion in a whistleblower retaliation case appealed from the Merit Systems Protection Board. The court also issued three nonprecedential opinions. The first comes in a veterans case appealed from the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. The second comes in an employment case appealed from the Merit Systems Protection Board. And the third comes in a patent case appealed from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. Notably, Judge Stoll dissented-in-part from the holding in the patent case. The court also issued a nonprecedential order granting a petition for a writ of mandamus, ordering the Eastern District of Texas to require transfer of a patent case. Finally, the court issued two Rule 36 judgments. Here are the introductions to the opinions and order and links to the Rule 36 judgments.

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Opinions

Opinions & Orders – January 13, 2022

This morning the Federal Circuit issued two nonprecedential opinions in cases appealed from the Court of Federal Claims. The first opinion affirms a dismissal by the Court of Federal Claims for failure to prosecute, and the second affirms a dismissal for lack of jurisdiction and failure to prosecute. The court also issued two Rule 36 judgments and one erratum. Here are the introductions to the opinions and links to the Rule 36 judgments and erratum.

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Supreme Court Activity

Recent Supreme Court Activity

Here is an update on recent activity at the Supreme Court in cases decided by the Federal Circuit. With respect to the Supreme Court’s October 2021 term, the Court still has not granted any petitions to hear any case decided by the Federal Circuit. As for still-pending petitions, one new petition was filed in a veterans case challenging the Federal Circuit’s alleged failure to apply the pro-veteran canon of statutory interpretation. Additionally, a petitioner filed a reply in support of its petition, which raised questions relating to the application of equitable tolling for recovering retroactive disability benefits. Moreover, since our last update, one waiver of right to respond was filed in a patent case. Lastly, the Supreme Court denied four petitions: two in patent cases, one in a veterans case, and one filed by a pro se petitioner. Here are the details.

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Opinions

Opinions & Orders – January 11, 2022

This morning the Federal Circuit issued a precedential opinion in a veterans case appealed from the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. The opinion affirms the denial of a 100% disability rating. The Federal Circuit also issued two Rule 36 judgments. Here is the introduction to the opinion and links to the Rule 36 judgments.

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Argument Recap / Panel Activity

Argument Recap – Wolfe v. McDonough

In December, the Federal Circuit heard oral argument in Wolfe v. McDonough. We have been following this veterans case because it attracted three amicus briefs in support of the plaintiff-appellee, Wolfe. On appeal, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs asks the Federal Circuit to reverse the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, which “granted a petition for a writ of mandamus filed by Wolfe on behalf of a class of claimants to invalidate 38 C.F.R. § 17.1005(a)(5) and require [the Department of Veterans Affairs] to readjudicate and grant claims for reimbursement of coinsurance and deductibles.” Judges Dyk, Reyna, and Stoll heard last week’s argument. This is our argument recap.

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Supreme Court Activity

Recent Supreme Court Activity

Here is an update on recent activity at the Supreme Court in cases decided by the Federal Circuit. With respect to the Supreme Court’s October 2021 term, since our last update the Court has not granted certiorari in any cases decided by the Federal Circuit. Three new petitions, however, have been filed with the Supreme Court: two in patent cases and one in a pro se case. Moreover, nine amicus briefs across three cases have been filed. Additionally, four waivers of right to respond, two briefs in opposition, and three replies have been filed. Here are the details.

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Opinions

Opinions & Orders – December 28, 2021

This morning the Federal Circuit issued two precedential opinions in patent cases appealed from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. The first opinion vacates a board decision for failure to tie its construction of a claim term to the patent’s specification. The second opinion affirms in part and vacates in part board determinations of unpatentability. The court also released two nonprecedential opinions. The first comes in a patent case appealed from the Eastern District of Missouri. The second comes in veterans case appealed from the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. Here are the introductions to the opinions.

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Supreme Court Activity

Recent Supreme Court Activity

Here is an update on recent activity at the Supreme Court in cases decided by the Federal Circuit. With respect to the Supreme Court’s October 2021 term, the Court granted certiorari in a patent case, but notably it did so only to vacate the Federal Circuit’s judgment and remand the case for further consideration of an alleged Appointments Clause violation. Other than that, since our last post one reply in support of a petition has been filed in a veterans case and a waiver of right to respond has been filed in a patent case. Additionally, the Court denied two petitions in cases involving takings claims. Here are the details.

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Opinions

Opinions & Orders – December 17, 2021

This morning the Federal Circuit issued a precedential opinion in a veterans case appealed from the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. The opinion, decided partially en banc, addresses evidentiary standards applicable in veterans’ cases. Judges Reyna, Newman, and O’Malley filed a separate opinion concurring-in-part and dissenting-in-part with respect to the part of the opinion decided by the en banc court. The court also issued three nonprecedential opinions. Two come in patent cases appealed from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board and one comes in a trademark case appealed from the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. The court also issued a nonprecedential order related to the opinion decided in part by the en banc court as well as two Rule 36 judgments. Here are the introductions to the opinions and order and links to the Rule 36 judgments.

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