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Federal Circuit

Federal Circuit Declares Structure of Patent Board Unconstitutional

By Laura Temme, Esq.

Arthrex Inc., a medical device company, requested inter partes review of its patent for a knotless suture by the Patent Trial and Appeals Board. As many anticipated, the Board found several claims in Arthrex's patent invalid. Arthrex appealed the Board's decision, arguing that the way the APJs are appointed violates the Appointments Clause. The Federal Circuit agreed and provided a fix that could resolve the problem without upending the entire patent appeals system.

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Federal Circuit Tunes In to Patent Infringement Suit Involving Sirius XM

By Laura Temme, Esq.

A German tech developer's patent infringement suit against Sirius XM Radio was revived in the Federal Circuit this month. Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft claims Sirius XM's reliance on a possibly-defunct licensing agreement means the satellite radio provider is infringing on Fraunhofer's patents. The decision vacates a 2018 ruling in Delaware district court, where Sirius XM's motion to dismiss was granted based on a finding that it had a license to use Fraunhofer's technology.

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Ohio State University Wants to Trademark the Word "The"

By Jeremy Conrad, Esq.

Trademarks are used to distinguish one product from another in the marketplace. A recent trademark application by the Ohio State University proposes that nothing says OSU like the letters THE. The university has a scheme to market t-shirts, hats, and other items with the innocuous word “The” in bold capital letters and a small version of the university logo underneath. Josh Gerben, the Washington, D.C.

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Appeals Court Upholds Case Against VA Director in Health Care Scandal

By William Vogeler, Esq.

A veteran's health care director, caught in the crossfire of reports that veterans had died while waiting for care, lost the battle over his job with the Department of Veterans Affairs. After being removed from his position, Lance Robinson challenged the decision before the Merit Systems Protection Board. In Robinson v. Department of Veterans Affairs, the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the decision.

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Federal Circuit Cases That Are Not So Complicated

By Tanya Roth, Esq.

Among the federal appeals courts, the U.S. Federal Circuit Court of Appeals doesn't make many headlines. After all, most of its decisions are not precedential. That, and they don't read like crime novels. They are overwhelmingly complex and technical because the Federal Circuit handles patent and trademark disputes. Even if you are an intellectual property attorney, chances are you missed many cases over the past few months.

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Apple's Forum Transfer Request Denied in Patent Case

By William Vogeler, Esq.

A federal appeals court rejected Apple's request to transfer a patent case out of Texas. Apple argued that the plaintiff had "no meaningful connection" to the district court in Texas. But the U.S. Federal Court of Appeals disagreed, leaving Apple in a jurisdiction that has not been kind. In a separate Texas case, a district court recently ordered Apple to pay half a billion dollars for patent infringement. It looks like nobody is getting out of patent cases there without a fight.

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