PTAB

Magistrate Judge in Eastern District of Texas Adds to the Developing Jurisprudence of Estoppel in the Context of IPRs and 35 U.S.C. § 315.

May 16, 2017

A magistrate judge in the Eastern District of Texas has recommended to the Court on May 11, 2017 that Microsoft be estopped from raising certain defenses at trial stemming from a total of six (6) IPRs filed by Microsoft against the patent owner Biscotti Inc.

Specifically, the magistrate judge states that:

Section 315(e) estops Microsoft from asserting at trial: (1) grounds for which the PTAB instituted IPR and determined those grounds to be insufficient to establish unpatentability after a trial on the merits; (2) grounds included in a petition but determined by the PTAB to not establish a reasonable likelihood of unpatentability (in other words, administrative review on the merits of a ground); and (3) grounds not included in a petition that a “skilled searcher conducting a diligent search reasonably could have been expected to discover.” See, e.g., 157 Cong. Rec. S1375 (daily ed. Mar. 8, 2011) (statement of Senator Jon Kyl); see also Clearlamp, LLC v. LKQ Corp., No. 12 C 2533, 2016 WL 4734389, at *9 (N.D. Ill. Mar. 18, 2016) (adopting the skilled searcher standard). As for the third category, the Court agrees with the Delaware court when it remarked, “extending [Shaw’s] logic to prior art references that were never presented to the PTAB at all (despite their public nature) confounds the very purpose of this parallel administrative proceeding . . . .” Intellectual Ventures I, Case No. 13-CV-00453-SLR, Dkt. No. 559 at 26-27. Finally, Microsoft is not estopped from asserting grounds included in a petition but which the PTAB found redundant or declined to institute review for another procedural reason. See Shaw, 817 F.3d at 1300; HP, 817 F.3d at 1347.

p. 13-14.

Read the full Report and Recommendation here.


August 2015 Prosecution Update

August 31, 2015

The August prosecution update featured a discussion of proposed changes to the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) rules governing proceedings before the board. The proposed rules include allowing patent owners to include new testimonial evidence such as expert declaration when submitting their opposition to a petition to institute a proceeding, requiring the PTAB to use the same claim construction standards used by district courts for patents that will expire during PTAB proceedings, and changes to the amendment procedures used by the PTAB during a trial. The prosecution update also included a review of the Cooperative Patent Classification system (CPC) and includes information about how to find relevant CPC classifications.

The presentation can be downloaded here.


August 2015 Litigation Update

August 21, 2015

The August litigation update included a discussion of some important statistics on post grant proceedings issued by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). The statistics offer information on the number of Inter Partes Review (IPR), Covered Business Method Review (CBMR), and Post Grant Review (PGR) proceedings that have been initiated and granted, the most common subject matter involved, and the number of claims held invalid in the end. The update also included a discussion of the Akami v. Limelight case that has been moving between the Federal Circuit and the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court ruled in Akami that showing inducement to infringe requires a single direct infringer. In response, the Federal Circuit has now expanded the definition of a “direct” infringer to include multiple parties working together in a joint enterprise.

The presentation can be downloaded here.