The Latest From Kinney and Lange

Posts for Newsletter Vol. 7, Issue 2

Supreme Court Clarifies Standard of Review for Claim Construction

■ Nicholas J. Peterka In Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. v. Sandoz, Inc., 574 U.S. ___, No. 13-854 (2015), the Supreme Court held that the Federal Circuit must apply the clearly erroneous standard when reviewing a district court’s resolution of subsidiary factual matters made during the court’s patent claim construction. At dispute was the meaning of the term “molecular weight.” Each party presented extrinsic evidence in the form of expert testimony and, relying on patent owner Teva’s expert, the district court determined that “molecular weight” was not indefinite. Sandoz appealed the claim construction to the Federal Circuit, which reviewed de novo...

AIA Brings Welcome Change to PCT Filing

Thanks to the America Invents Act (AIA), the USPTO may serve as the receiving office for PCT applications by foreign inventors if the “applicant,” including a commercial assignee of the invention, is a U.S. resident. The PCT allows “applicants,” defined as “any natural person or legal entity,” to file PCT applications in the country of which they are a resident or national. Prior to the AIA, the USPTO recognized only inventors as applicants and, therefore, PCT applications with U.S. assignees but without U.S. inventors had to be filed with the country of nationality or residency of the inventor or with...

Recent Patents | Newsletter Vol. 7, Issue 2

Kinney & Lange P.A. files hundreds of new patent applications each year in a wide variety of technology areas. Below are a few recently issued U.S. patents for which the firm is listed as the legal representative.   8,899,872 “Thermoplastic die box with quick height adjustment mechanism” 8,899,916 “Torque frame and asymmetric journal bearing for fan drive gear system” 8.899,910 “Air turbine starter and method for venting without loss of oil” 8,916,075 “Method of making a reinforced resin structure” 8,960,739 “Multi-functional doorstop tool” 8,963,735 “Turbine meter pre-scaling terminal block electronics” 8,960,236 “Bypass piston port and methods of manufacturing a bypass...

SUPREME COURT RULES TRADEMARK TACKING IS A QUESTION FOR THE JURY

■ Andrew R. Swanson In Hana Financial, Inc. v. Hana Bank, 135 S.Ct. 907 (2015), a unanimous Supreme Court held that the determination of whether two trademarks may be “tacked” for the purpose of determining priority is a question for the jury.   Prior to Hana, circuit courts were split as to whether tacking was a question of law for the judge, or a question of fact for the jury. While the Court determined that the jury is in the best position to determine if the tacking doctrine applies, the Court did leave open the judge’s ability to determine the tacking...

B&B HARDWARE: TTAB PROCEEDINGS CAN CREATE ISSUE PRECLUSION

■ Andrew W. Werner On March 24, 2015 the U.S. Supreme Court decided in B&B Hardware, Inc. v. Hargis Industries, Inc., 575 U.S. ___ (2015); holding that when trademark usages adjudicated by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”) are materially the same as those before a district court, issue preclusion should apply so long as the other ordinary elements of issue preclusion are met. B&B Hardware stems from a 1996 trademark registration by Hargis Industries, Inc. (“Hargis”) for the SEALTITE mark for “self-piercing and self-drilling metal screws for use in the manufacture of metal and post-frame buildings.” B&B Hardware,...