Posts Tagged: "venue"

SCOTUS reverses Federal Circuit in TC Heartland, Patent Venue in State of Incorporation

The Supreme Court reversed the Federal Circuit and ruled that 28 U.S.C. 1400(b) remains the only applicable patent venue statute, that 28 U.S.C. 1391(c) did not modify or amend 1400(b) or the Court’s 1957 ruling in Fourco Glass Co. v. Transmirra Products Corp., and that the term “residence” in 28 U.S.C. 1400(b) means only the state in which a company is incorporated. The importance of this ruling should be immediately felt on patent litigation in the United States. No longer will a patent owner be able to sue an infringing defendant in a district court where the defendant is subject to personal jurisdiction. Instead, patent infringement lawsuits will only be able to be filed in districts within states where the infringing defendant is incorporated, or in districts where there has been an act of infringement and the defendant has a regular and established place of business.

Regardless of Changes to Patent Venue, Trolls will still be Trolls

Because patent trolls prefer filing in the Eastern District of Texas, the thinking goes that it will be a significant blow to patent trolls if the Supreme Court does not agree with the Federal Circuit. In other words, the days will be numbered for patent trolls if the Supreme Court determines that Congress did not expanded patent venue with the 1988 amendment that made the statutory definition of corporate residence found in § 1391 applicable to patent cases. That conventional wisdom is wrong!… Reflection Code has brought patent infringement actions in the Eastern District of Texas, but on March 31, 2017, Reflection Code brought two separate patent infringement lawsuits in the Eastern District of Michigan — one against Bissell, Inc. and the other against Mattel, Inc.

Supreme Court hears Oral Arguments in TC Heartland v. Kraft Foods

Justices Kagan and Ginsburg seemed skeptical. Indeed, Congress has already passed a general venue statute that defined residency “for all venue places – all venue purposes,” as Justice Ginsburg put it. Justice Kagan chimed in, questioning the propriety of overturning the broader rule, which she called “the decision that the practice has conformed to” and the “practical backdrop” against which Congress was legislating. Next, Justice Breyer noted the many arguments and briefs discussing the Eastern District of Texas, but which he felt were not relevant.

SCOTUS takes on Venue: A full summary of oral arguments in TC Heartland v. Kraft Food Group

On Monday, March 27th, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Food Group Brands LLC. The case, arising from allegations of patent infringement over liquid water enhancement products, will ask the court to decide whether 28 U.S.C. Section 1400(b), the patent venue statute which provides that judicial actions for patent suits take place in the district within which the defendant resides, is supplemented by 28 U.S.C. Section 1391(c), which provides that an entity may reside in multiple districts.

Whirlpool files Supreme Court Amicus Supporting Kraft Foods in TC Heartland case

If the Supreme Court were to reverse the Federal Circuit and revert back to Fourco Glass, that would make it difficult for patent owners, including Whirlpool and others like them, to reasonably seek redress for patent infringement. Essentially, a reversion back to Fourco Glass would mean that patent infringement cases brought by corporations like Whirlpool would have to literally be brought in the home court of the patent infringer, or perhaps in Delaware where so many entities are incorporated. It would also necessitate a multiplicity of lawsuits, as Whirlpool explained in its amicus filing.

Hatch says patent venue reform likely regardless of SCOTUS decision in TC Heartland

With respect to the thorny issue of patent litigation, Senator Hatch explained that there is a very real chance that venue reform will happen this year… HATCH: “The Supreme Court is currently examining the issue, so we won’t have a full view of the landscape until after the Court rules. But no matter what the Court does, we’re likely going to need follow-on legislation to prevent future forum-shopping and to ensure that litigants have a meaningful connection to the site of the suit.”

Patent Reform 2017: Changes coming from the Judiciary, Legislative and Executive Branches

While calls for widespread patent reform are not as loud as they have been in previous years, 2017 is shaping up to be a year where we may still see significant change to U.S. patent laws. What will the changes to U.S. patent laws look like over the next year? The better question may be to first ask whether those anticipated changes will be coming from the judiciary, legislative or executive branch, all of which will take center stage at some point in 2017.

The Future of Forum-Shopping in a Post-TC Heartland World

The Federal Circuit’s broad interpretation of the patent-venue statute has led to widespread forum-shopping with a disproportionate number of cases being filed in the Eastern District of Texas. For example, since 2011, roughly a quarter of all patent-infringement cases have been filed in the Eastern District, with 2015 being a peak year when 44% of all patent-infringement cases were filed. This despite the fact that the Eastern District of Texas is home to relatively few companies and home to little more than 3.5 million people. By comparison, the Northern District of California, a district with nearly 8 million people and home to many companies, only made up 4-5% of all patent-infringement filings annually.

Politics of Patent Venue Reform: SCOTUS Taking TC Heartland to Delay Push for Venue Reform

The genesis of the patent venue “problem” is simple: Many patent infringement defendants complain about traveling to the Eastern District of Texas. They feel that it is too pro-patent, too pro-enforcement, or too difficult for defendants to win on a motion to dismiss… With the US Supreme Court agreeing to hear TC Heartland the perennial patent venue issue is front and center for patent reform in 2017. This case will attract much amicus, media, Congressional, law school, and fake news attention. It should influence how patent owners and litigation investors look at venue options in general and perhaps also with regard to growth markets like Germany and China. It will also tell us how the Trump administration thinks about patent issues.

Patent Forecast 2017: Will Patent Courts Be Great Again?

While Congress seems to pass some form of patent legislation roughly every 9 to 11 years, the more important changes with regard to business predictability and economic growth tend to come from specific Court decisions. Just look at what Alice has done to ruin software patents with uncertainty, and now with the PTAB actually finding that an MRI machine is an unpatentable abstract idea. Worse it has placed the US behind Europe and even China in terms of protecting computer implemented inventions… Courts can make patents great again in America. And if not they will at least be as active as they have been in the past 10 years in terms of shaping the patent dialogue.

While Congress does seem to pass some form of patent legislation roughly every 9 to 11 years, the more important changes with regard to business predictability and economic growth tend to come from specific Court decisions. Just look at what Alice has done to ruin software patents with uncertainty, and now with the PTAB actually finding that an MRI machine is an unpatentable abstract idea. Worse it has placed the US behind Europe and even China in terms of protecting computer implemented inventions.

Reverse Patent Reform in 2017 or Wipe out a Generation of Inventors

Every time a new patent reform bill moves forward in Congress, the courts create case law eliminating the need to pass the bill. They legislate from the bench to protect their turf. The infringer lobby took advantage of this dynamic and pushed bills that would stimulate response from the courts… I think we should employ this well proven method of changing law. I know this is not how our government is supposed to work, but let’s be pragmatic. We cannot force an unwilling government to follow its own constitutional processes. So, we need to work with what is available.

The Four Consequential Patent Trends of 2016

Suffice it to say that 2016 has been an interesting year. The political climate is much different than one year ago amidst a growing tide of nationalism abroad and populism here in the United States. Throw in a massive migration crisis stemming from the Middle East, a slew of unexpected celebrity passings and the fact that the Chicago Cubs are lovable losers no more, and we’re about to wind down a year which seems nearly mythological in stature… As we turn the page onward to 2017, it’s a good time to take another look at some of the major trends shaping the IP and technology landscape in the United States and abroad. From increasing competition with an Asian powerhouse to the continuation of a misleading narrative about patent system abuses, the past year leaves us with many important narratives to consider for the year ahead.

2016 Patent Year End Review: Insiders Reflect on the Biggest Patent Moments of the Year

It is one again time to take a moment to look back on the year that was, reflecting on the biggest, most impactful moments of 2016. For us that means looking backward at the most impactful events in the world of intellectual property. As you might expect, the two recurring themes in this 2016 patent year end review relate to patent eligibility and the Patent Trial and Appeal Board.

Supreme Court agrees to hear patent venue case filled with patent reform implications

Earlier today the United States Supreme Court granted certiorari in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Food Brands Group LLC. In deciding to hear this patent venue case the Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether 28 U.S.C. § 1400(b) is the sole and exclusive provision governing venue in patent infringement actions… Ultimately, the question that the petitioner really wants the Supreme Court to address is whether the Eastern District of Texas, which is home to 20-25% of all patent litigations because it is perceived to be patent owner friendly, is a proper venue for patent owners to be choosing. If the Supreme Court issues a ruling that strikes down current patent venue rules there would be no need for patent venue reform efforts to continue in Congress. On the other hand, if the Supreme Court were to affirm the Federal Circuit in this case calls for legislative venue reform would likely become deafening.

House Judiciary subcommittee questions Lee on preventing time and attendance abuse at USPTO

“My team and I do not tolerate time and attendance abuse,” Lee told the subcommittee. While she did note that the USPTO had taken disciplinary actions against examiners that have abused time and attendance reports, such actions ranging from counseling to expulsion and repayment for hours not worked, she added that there was evidence that instances of time and attendance abuse were not widespread. She cited a report on the USPTO’s telework program issued by the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) in July 2015. The report found that “It would appear to be unlikely that [time and attendance] abuse is widespread or unique to teleworkers, and it does not appear to reflect the actions of the workforce as a whole.” Additionally, the report indicated that the agency’s telework program saved the agency $7 million each year on average by allowing examiners to continue working in spite of government shutdowns caused by weather or other reasons.