Posts Tagged: "due process"

Petition Asks SCOTUS to Clarify Takings Clause in Context of Copyright Infringement

Following a denial of rehearing en banc by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in February, publishing company Canada Hockey L.L.C., doing business as Epic Sports, and Michael Bynum, a sportswriter and editor, have now filed a petition for writ of certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court in their appeal of a copyright case against both Texas A&M University and a pair of school officials. The petition claims the Fifth Circuit’s decision leaves copyright holders “at the mercy of state infringers.” In their petition, the plaintiffs argue that the Fifth Circuit’s ruling affirming the Southern District of Texas’ dismissal of copyright claims over Texas A&M’s unauthorized reproduction of portions of Bynum’s manuscript on the nearly 100-year history of the famed “12th Man” tradition at Texas A&M erred in failing to find constitutional violations of both the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause and due process under the Fourteenth Amendment. The Texas ruling followed the U.S. Supreme Court’s March 2020 decision in Allen v. Cooper, which declared that Congress’ abrogation of state sovereign immunity under the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act was unconstitutional.

Inventor Argues USPTO Officials’ Motion to Dismiss Due Process Violations Case Based on Immunity Defense Fails

On January 21, inventor Martin David Hoyle and his company B.E. Technology filed a response in opposition to a consolidated motion to dismiss that was filed last November by defendants Michelle K. Lee, former Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), a pair of officials at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and three administrative patent judges (APJs) who sat on PTAB panels invalidating Hoyle’s patent claims. Hoyle and B.E. Tech’s response brief argues that the motion to dismiss filed by the former and current USPTO employees is based on factual disputes that are inappropriate to decide on a motion to dismiss, and that plaintiffs have made out a sufficient due process claim under Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of Federal Bureau of Narcotics (1971).

Alice-Insanity (Part Three): How the Star Chamber of Madison Place Violates Basic Principles of Collateral Estoppel

As stated in Part One of this series, the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees, inter alia, that no person shall be deprived of property (including intellectual property), without due process of law. However, the Supreme Court has never held that a single appellate court must comply with Fifth Amendment due process of law. The closest the Supreme Court ever came to such a radical idea as requiring any appellate court in the nation to comply with due process of law was at a time when “Three’s Company” and “The Muppet Show” dominated the 7PM-9PM Nielsen’s ratings. See Singleton v. Wulff, 428 U.S. 106 (1976) (warning the Eighth Circuit that “injustice was more likely to be caused than avoided by deciding the issue without petitioner’s having had an opportunity to be heard,” but not actually requiring the Eighth Circuit to comply with Fifth Amendment due process). In contrast, the Supreme Court has held that even a man classified as an “enemy combatant” by the U.S. government is entitled to at least some measure of due process. See Hamdi v. Rumsfeld, 542 U.S. 507 (2004).

B.E. Technology Dubs IPR Process a ‘Kafkaesque Nightmare’ in Mandamus Petition to CAFC

B.E. Technology, a company owned by Martin David Hoyle, developer of internet advertising technology who has been embroiled in litigation with big tech companies like Facebook, Twitter and Google for close to a decade now, today filed a petition for writ of mandamus with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC). The petition asks the court to intervene to “prevent an unconstitutional deprivation of B.E.’s property rights in the onslaught of IPR proceedings that have been brought to challenge the validity of its most critical patents.” B.E. specifically asks the CAFC to direct the Patent Trial and Appeal Board  (PTAB) to vacate its decisions to grant institution in four separate inter partes review (IPR) proceedings: Twitter, Inc. and Google LLC v. B.E. Technology, L.L.C., Nos. IPR2021-00482, IPR2021-00483, IPR2021-00484, and IPR2021-00485. The question presented is: “Whether a writ of mandamus should issue to prevent an unconstitutional deprivation of the Petitioner patent owner’s property rights without due process of law?”

Alice-Insanity (Part One), or Why the Alice-Mayo Test Violates Due Process of Law

The Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees, inter alia, that no person shall be deprived of property (including intellectual property), without due process of law. For instance, it is settled law that a federal statute may be so arbitrary and capricious as to violate due process. Similarly, it is settled that an administrative agency, e.g., the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), cannot escape the due process of law requirement when processing patent applications. In theory (less in reality), due process of the law extends to judicial as well as political branches of government, and judgments that violate constitutional limitations and guarantees are void or voidable.

Epic Sports Petitions Fifth Circuit for Rehearing En Banc in Texas A&M ‘12th Man’ Copyright/ Takings Clause Case

On September 22, publishing company Canada Hockey L.L.C., doing business as Epic Sports, and Michael Bynum, a sportswriter and editor, filed a petition for rehearing en banc in their appeal of a copyright case against both Texas A&M University and a pair of school officials. In their petition, the plaintiffs argue that the original panel decision erred in failing to find constitutional violations of both the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause and due process under the Fourteenth Amendment for Texas A&M’s unlawful reproduction of the plaintiffs’ copyrighted work regarding the history of the legendary 12th Man at Texas A&M.

CAFC Reverses District Court, Finds California Jurisdiction Proper in Declaratory Judgment Action

On May 12, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) reversed and remanded the dismissal of a declaratory judgment action in an appeal from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The complaint was brought by Trimble, Inc. (Trimble) and Innovative Software Engineering, LLC (ISE) against PerDiemCo, seeking a declaratory judgment that neither Trimble nor ISE infringed any of the 11 patents that PerDiemCo asserted against it.

Financial Incentive Structure for AIA Trials Destroys Due Process at PTAB, New Vision Gaming Argues

On June 30, New Vision Gaming & Development filed a corrected appellant brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit challenging two covered business method (CBM) reviews conducted at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) which canceled all claims of New Vision’s patents covering a gaming invention. Among other things, New Vision argues that the PTAB is constitutionally flawed, that its structure creates financial incentives for administrative patent judges (APJs) to grant validity reviews in a way that destroys due process for patent owners, and that the PTAB’s APJs have neither the judicial independence nor the oversight of Article III courts necessary to address the impermissible appearance of bias at that tribunal.

Preserving Due Process in Approaches to Narrowing Claims in Multi-Patent Lawsuits

Courts construe, administer, and apply the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure so as “to secure the just, speedy and inexpensive determination of every action and proceeding.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 1. Large patent portfolios have contributed to the increase in numbers of unwieldy cases that assert many patents and claims. A court presiding over such a case usually makes every…

Why Huawei is Unlikely to Win Its Case Against the United States

In an expected move, Huawei filed a lawsuit against the United States in the U.S. District Court for the District of Texas on March 6. Huawei Technologies v. U.S., 4:19-cv-00159, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas (Sherman). In its mammoth 54-page complaint, the company alleges the United States and its agencies violated the Federal Constitution when it singled out Huawei in the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). U.S. authorities are concerned that China could use Huawei’s equipment to spy on communications networks. Having offices in Plano, Huawei had jurisdiction to file in the Eastern District of Texas, widely recognized as a plaintiff-friendly court for technology matters. But despite its considerable resources and legal muscle, Huawei will have a challenging time proving its case in court.

CAFC Affirms PTAB Win for Patent Owner in Nonprecedential Decision, Chief Prost Dissents

The Federal Circuit recently issued a nonprecedential opinion in Amazon.com, Inc. v. ZitoVault, LLC, affirming a decision by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) that e-commerce giant Amazon failed to prove a patent owned by security solutions provider ZitoVault was unpatentable. The Federal Circuit majority of Circuit Judges Kara Stoll and Kathleen O’Malley disagreed with Amazon’s that the PTAB erred in its claim construction. Dissenting, Chief Judge Sharon Prost wrote that she believed the PTAB’s analysis of a specific claim term was flawed, and she would have vacated the PTAB decision and remanded the case for further consideration. The patent-at-issue was ZitoVault’s U.S. Patent No. 6484257, titled System and Method for Maintaining N Number of Simultaneous Cryptographic Sessions Using a Distributed Computing Environment. Issued in November 2002, it claims a software architecture for conducting a plurality of cryptographic sessions over a distributed computing environment.

No blanket prohibition against the introduction of new evidence during an inter partes review

There is no blanket prohibition against the introduction of new evidence during an inter partes review proceeding, indeed new evidence should be expected. A petitioner can introduce new evidence following the petition, if it is a legitimate reply to evidence introduced by the patent owner, or if the new evidence is used to show the level of knowledge skilled artisans possess when reading the prior art references identified as grounds for obviousness.

Class Action Lawsuit Filed Against U.S. Government Alleging PTAB Violates Takings Clause and Due Process

On Wednesday, May 9th, Oklahoma-based patent owner Christy Inc. filed a class action complaint in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims against the United States seeking just compensation for the taking of the rights of inventors’ and patent owners’ patent property rights effectuated by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). Members of the proposed class would include all owners of patents which were deemed by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to include patentable subject matter which were later invalidated by the PTAB.

Six Predictions for the 2018 Patent Environment

For patent practitioners, this year packed in a lot of activity: Fractured Federal Circuit en banc decisions resolving who bears the burden of proof on motions to amend in an inter partes review (IPR) proceeding and wading into the Apple-Samsung wars, and U.S. Supreme Court decisions on patent exhaustion, design patent damages, the fairly untested Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act (BPCIA), and venue. And there’s still more coming, with outstanding opinions from the Federal Circuit on the reviewability of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s (PTAB) time bar decisions and from the Supreme Court on the constitutionality of IPRs and the PTAB’s authority to institute proceedings partially. Coming off such a blockbuster year, what comes next? Here are six predictions.

Law Professors File Briefs with the Supreme Court in Oil States

A review of amici briefs filed with the U.S. Supreme Court in Oil States Energy Services, LLC v. Greene’s Energy Group, LLC provides evidence of a stark split in how various stakeholders in the U.S. patent system view the patent validity challenge activities ongoing at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). Whereas many of the world’s largest tech companies who have a dominant advantage in the consumer marketplace are in favor of the PTAB remaining active, many small entities and individual inventors are greatly opposed to the PTAB and its differing standards on patent validity leading to a higher rate of invalidation than in Article III district court proceedings. A look at amici briefs coming from law professors can shed some light on where the academic sector comes down on the subject of the PTAB’s constitutionality.