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A dispute between the two titans in the poultry processing equipment market led the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to construe the term “protection of investments” in 35 U.S.C. §252.
A dispute between the two titans in the poultry processing equipment market led the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to construe the term “protection of investments” in 35 U.S.C. §252. John Bean Techs. Corp. v. Morris & Assocs., Inc., No. 2020-1090, 2021 WL 641987 (Fed. Cir. Feb. 19, 2021). This section outlines the boundaries of the court’s equitable powers to absolve liability from infringement for substantively altered patents. The court affirmed the summary judgment decision by the District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas that granted equitable intervening rights to Morris & Associate Inc.’s (Morris) against John Bean Technologies Corporation’s (John Bean) infringement claims based on its reissued patent. Rejecting John Bean’s argument that “protection of investment” is limited to monetary investments made and recouped before the reissue certificate, the Federal Circuit determined that the lower court did not abuse its discretion by considering factors other than money invested before the reissue and granting Morris the defense of equitable intervening rights.
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By Li-Jen Shen, Cory Smith and George C. Chen
The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) has finally filled a gap left by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in the standard for finding deceptive intent when trying to prove fraud on the USPTO.
By Robert W. Clarida and Robert J. Bernstein
The Ninth Circuit ruling in Flo & Eddie may turn out to be last stop on the long and winding road the owners of pre-1972 recordings have traveled in their efforts to obtain compensation for public performances through platforms like Sirius.
By Willem Klein
Patent marking is an important step in the patent lifecycle as it is generally required to seek damages from infringers prior to the date the suit is filed. While virtual marking has somewhat reduced the overhead of marking, it suffers from the same problems all Internet-based evidence runs into in court: websites are ephemeral and have intermittent accessibility, as well as poor public logging of when information existed where, and for how long. NFTs on a digital blockchain could potentially overcome these hurdles, while still providing the benefits of virtual marking via websites.
By Joshua R. Stein and Jeffrey S. Ginsberg
Pair of Federal Circuit Decisions Address Standing to Appeal Adverse IPR Decision