Firm News

USPTO Announces Prioritized Examination Pilot Program For COVID-19 Related Applications

»»Continuing its efforts to keep up with COVID-19, the USPTO has announced a prioritized examination pilot program reserved for applications covering products or processes subject to an applicable FDA approval for COVID-19 use. Beginning on July 13, 2020, applicants may request prioritized examination for covered applications. The USPTO’s objective for the pilot is to complete […]

USPTO Launches “Patents 4 Partnerships” Pilot Program

»»In the past few months, the USPTO has made a number of changes in response to the spread of coronavirus. The focus has been both protecting USPTO employees and lessening the burden on affected practitioners and applicants alike. Now the USPTO has begun an effort aimed at solving the problem itself. This month, the USPTO […]

Supreme Court: PTAB’s Institution of IPR Over Time-Bar Unappealable

»»In their decision in Thryv, Inc. v. Click-to-Call Technologies, LP, the Supreme Court ruled that the PTAB’s decisions on 35 U.S.C. § 315(b), the one year time-bar, are final and unappealable. The case began in 2013 at the PTAB with Thryv, Inc. (“Thryv”) and Click-to-Call Technologies, LP (“Click-to-Call”). Thryv filed a petition for an IPR […]

USPTO Extends COVID-19 CARES Act Response Deadlines

»»On March 16, the United States Patent & Trademark Office (“USPTO”) announced that  ‘extraordinary’ circumstances for relief at the USPTO would officially include the effects of COVID-19 “coronavirus”. On March 27, the USPTO announced its further relief response with deadline extensions as authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) executed […]

Western District of Texas Stakes Claim to Top Patent Litigation Forum

»»The close of the first quarter of 2020 means new patent filings totals from across the U.S., with the PTAB and the District of Delaware leading the way at 333 and 174 filings respectively. However, it was the Western District of Texas (WDTX) that made the biggest leap, continuing its surge since Judge Alan Albright […]

USPTO Announces COVID-19 CARES Act Response And Deadline Extensions

»»The United States Patent & Trademark Office (“USPTO”) has announced its relief response and deadlines extensions relating to the current COVID-19 “coronavirus” as authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) executed March 27. In the release, USPTO Director Andrei Iancu explained the steps being taken by the USPTO: “Inventors and […]

Arthrex: Federal Circuit Rejects En Banc Rehearing On PTAB Judge Constitutionality

»»The Federal Circuit has denied the request for rehearing on their Arthrex decision from this past fall. As Maier and Maier’s own Steven Kunin describes here, this rejection sets up a probable grant of certiorari on the issue from the Supreme Court. “The split among the judges provides a roadmap for a probable Supreme Court […]

New Rules For Proving Unintentional Delay At USPTO

»»On March 2, 2020, the USPTO published a new notice in the Federal Register clarifying their practice regarding unintentional delay. “The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is clarifying its practice as to situations that will require additional information about whether a delay in seeking the revival of an abandoned application, acceptance of a […]

Federal Circuit Uses Reference Number Conventions In Claim Construction

»»On February 21, 2020, the Federal Circuit remanded Ironworks Patents LLC v. Samsung Elecs. Co. back to the Northern District of California due to its flawed claim construction below. The panel of judges found the term ‘camera unit’ to have been misinterpreted to require a battery and external interface device over the specification and convention […]

Federal Circuit: Indefinite Claims Reviewable In IPRs

»»On February 4, 2020, the Federal Circuit issued a precedential decision in Samsung Electronics America, Inc. v. Prisua Engineering Corp.. The decision remanded an inter partes review (IPR) proceeding to the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) for review of claims under the proposed novelty and obviousness grounds, despite the fact that the Board had […]