September 8, 2015

Federal Circuit Court Decisions For Week Ending August 28, 2015

The Dow Chemical Company, v. Nova Chemicals Corporation, Case No. 2014-1431 (August 28, 2015) (precedential)(3-0) Patent Nos. 5,847,053 and 6,111,023

Key point(s): 

  • An intervening change in the law of indefiniteness resulting from Nautilus provides an exception to issue preclusion and the doctrine of law of the case. 
  • A claim is invalid as indefinite when no guidance is provided as to which method should be used to measure a claimed value.

Inline Plastics Corp., v. Easypak, LLC, Case No. 2014-1305 (August 27, 2015) (precedential) (3-0) Patent Nos. 7,118,003 and 7,073,680 

Key point(s): 

  • Claim scope is not limited to a specific embodiment, when the specification discloses an alternative embodiment and the intrinsic evidence does not support a construction limited to the specific embodiment.

Progressive Casualty Insurance Co., v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Co., Case Nos. 2014-1466 (August 20, 2015) (Non-precedential) Patent Nos. 8,140,358; 8,090,598; 6,064,970; 7,124,088; 7,877,269 

Key point(s): 

  • Rejection relying on a new passage was harmless error when there is an independent ground to support the rejection. 
  • Claims requiring “safety factors” were not entitled to the benefit of earlier priority date when parent patent used the term “rating factors.” 
  • Rationale for motivation to combine references can be pieced from different portions of the Board’s decision.

Related Team:

Jason C. Huang