Intellectual Property

  • May 25, 2016

    Fighting With The Fans: 4 Big Battles Over FanFic

    The producers of an unauthorized "Star Trek" film were the latest fans targeted for producing so-called fan fiction, but they were hardly the first. With that case heading toward a settlement this week, here are the other times we've seen this kind of complicated clash between die-hard fandom and cold, hard copyright law.

  • May 25, 2016

    Nistica Beats Network Filters Patent Claim At Trial

    A California federal jury has decided that Nistica Inc.’s optical network filters don’t infringe one patent owned by fiber-optics rival Finisar Corp., while jurors deadlocked over whether the filters infringed a second Finisar patent.

  • May 25, 2016

    Insurer Off Hook In Newspaper Trade Secrets Row, Court Says

    A Missouri federal judge ruled Tuesday that Mid-Century Insurance Co. doesn't have to defend an advertising agency in a suit alleging it stole a newspaper's trade secrets to build up its business, finding the underlying complaint doesn't allege the newspaper's owner suffered any injury that falls under the Mid-Century policy's coverage.

  • May 25, 2016

    Joose Wants Four Loko's 'Bullying' Trade Dress Suit Tossed

    The company behind the fruity alcohol drink Joose is pushing to toss out a lawsuit that claimed it was closely mimicking the trade dress of rival Four Loko, saying the suit was aimed at “bullying” the company “into submission.”

  • May 25, 2016

    Samsung Rips Off 4G Patents, Chinese Phone Maker Says

    Chinese mobile developer Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. took aim at Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. in California federal court Tuesday, accusing the Korean technology giant of infringing 11 patents to offer faster connection speeds via 4G wireless networks on smartphones and tablets.

  • May 25, 2016

    Pet Food Co. Says Wal-Mart, Purina Lying About Ingredients

    A natural pet food company has accused Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Nestle Purina Petcare Co., Mars Petcare US Inc. and several others of “unconscionable” false advertising, claiming that they use images of premium cuts of meat and fresh vegetables on products made from cheap animal trimmings. 

  • May 25, 2016

    9th Circ. Snubs Octane Standard In Solar TM Fight

    The Ninth Circuit upheld an injunction Tuesday that largely bars a Chinese solar energy company from using the name Sun Earth in the U.S., striking down a California solar thermal company's bid to tighten the screws on the foreign firm and win fees under the U.S. Supreme Court's Octane Fitness standard.

  • May 25, 2016

    Supreme Court Urged To Review Fed. Circ. Damages Rules

    Hoping to salvage a $16 million award it won against Cisco Systems Inc. in a Wi-Fi patent case, an Australian national research agency turned to the U.S. Supreme Court Wednesday, arguing the Federal Circuit’s damages rules are undermining the finality of patent litigation.

  • May 25, 2016

    Europe Floats Proposal On Drug Cooperation In TTIP

    The European Commission on Tuesday published its proposal for an annex to the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership that would be devoted solely to working with the U.S. on drug regulations, stressing the need for faster and cheaper approval of medicines in both markets.

  • May 25, 2016

    Led Zeppelin Rips 'PR Stunt' In 'Stairway' Fight

    Led Zeppelin on Tuesday slammed a bid to compel the band members' attendance at an upcoming trial in California federal court over alleged copyright infringement concerning their famous song "Stairway to Heaven," labeling it a "PR stunt in the hope of tainting the jury pool," as they've said they'll be there.

  • May 24, 2016

    Sanofi Wants Jury Verdict Axed In Amgen Drug Patent Row

    Sanofi urged a Delaware federal judge Monday to toss a jury's verdict finding rival Amgen's cholesterol drug patents valid and order a new trial or enter judgment against Amgen in its infringement row, saying the court erred in excluding evidence and throwing out Sanofi's obviousness defense.

  • May 24, 2016

    Fed. Circ. Won't Rehear IP Row Over Container Patent

    The Federal Circuit on Tuesday declined to rehear its decision that German chemicals company Sud-Chemie AG did not infringe rival CSP Technologies Inc.'s patent covering moisture-free containers for consumer goods.

  • May 24, 2016

    PTAB Reverses Course, Upholds Teleconferencing Patent

    The Patent Trial and Appeal Board on Monday upheld claims in a Straight Path IP Group online communication patent, following a rare reversal by the Federal Circuit that found the PTAB used an incorrect claim construction when it previously invalidated the claims.

  • May 24, 2016

    Google-Oracle Jury Deliberations Delayed By Tech Problems

    Deliberations in Oracle's $8.8 billion trial over Google’s use of copyrighted Java software code in the Android operating system were delayed when jurors couldn’t access digital evidence files on Tuesday in California federal court.

  • May 24, 2016

    AstraZeneca Says Del. Order Ends Dr. Reddy's NJ Nexium Suit

    AstraZeneca AB on Monday urged a New Jersey federal court to dismiss Dr. Reddy's Laboratories suit alleging it wrongfully blocked the generics maker from using a purple capsule for its version of Nexium, saying a Delaware federal court already decided the issue by enjoining Dr. Reddy’s use of the purple marks.

  • May 24, 2016

    Senju Settles Out Of Apotex's Pinkeye Meds Antitrust Suit

    Apotex has reached a settlement to resolve its claims against Senju Pharmaceutical in an antitrust suit accusing multiple drugmakers of trying to extend the patent for Allergan Inc.’s Zymar pinkeye treatment, according to a stipulation approved Tuesday in a Delaware federal court.

  • May 24, 2016

    Calif., Texas Produce Most Patents, USPTO Data Portal Shows

    California and Texas, the two most populous states in the U.S., top the charts for producing the most patents, according to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s open data portal, which was formally introduced by USPTO director Michelle Lee on Tuesday.

  • May 24, 2016

    Hyundai, Kia, Nissan Settle Signal IP’s Auto Patent Suits

    A California federal judge on Tuesday dismissed infringement suits against Hyundai, Kia and Nissan by automotive patent holder Signal IP Inc., after the companies said they had resolved their differences and reached settlements putting an end to their respective litigation.

  • May 24, 2016

    Generic Drugmaker Wins Review Of UCB's Vimpat Patent

    The Patent Trial and Appeal Board on Monday accepted generic drugmaker Argentum Pharmaceuticals' petition to review a patent for UCB Inc.'s epilepsy drug Vimpat.

  • May 24, 2016

    PTAB Won't Review Suboxone IP After Teva Misses Deadline

    Teva Pharmaceuticals was too late to challenge two Suboxone patents, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board ruled Monday, despite the drugmaker’s claim that technical issues with the board’s online filing system delayed its petitions.

Expert Analysis

  • Creating Barclay Damon: Lessons From A Law Firm Merger

    John P. Langan

    Joining two firms with long histories meant not only combining cultures, philosophies and deeply rooted ways of doing business, but also combining two IT systems, two accounting systems, and two ways of handling many other administrative functions. It didn't help that the firms had different fiscal year ends, says John Langan, managing partner of Barclay Damon LLP.

  • Why Patents Still Matter In The Era Of Open Innovation

    Ayaz Hameed

    While there is some truth to the notion that patents are not a prerequisite for business success in the technology sector, they remain a vital strategic tool for companies to protect their value proposition, mitigate risk and to actually accelerate the pace of innovation as opposed to hindering it as argued by many in the industry, says Ayaz Hameed, global head of IP for Pegasystems Inc.

  • 'Happy Birthday': Journey To The Public Domain

    Tamara Kurtzman

    With a landmark class action settlement scheduled to be approved next month, the iconic song that has ushered in birthdays of everyone from royalty and presidents to citizens and children alike will — for the first time in over 100 years — undisputedly fall in the public domain. The return of “Happy Birthday to You” to the public domain is unquestionably a resounding victory against ever-increasing false copyright claims, says Tama... (continued)

  • Why Mediations Fail And What To Do About It

    Cecilia H. Morgan

    The standard responses for why mediations fail are “wrong people, wrong time, no joint session,” but in interviews with colleagues and fellow mediators, Cecilia Morgan at JAMS ADR takes a look at other common reasons why mediation are unsuccessful, and the best ways to guide a mediation to a satisfactory conclusion.

  • Reflecting On The 20th Anniversary Of BMW V. Gore

    Andrew Frey

    On May 20, 1996, the U.S. Supreme Court held that a $2 million punitive damages award imposed for a tort that caused $4,000 in economic harm was unconstitutionally excessive. In the ensuing 20 years, BMW v. Gore has proved to be a foundational case in punitive damages jurisprudence. We were fortunate enough to have played a role in this historic decision, say Mayer Brown LLP partners Andrew Frey and Evan Tager and Maserati North Am... (continued)

  • Corporate Counsel: Consumer Becomes Provider (The Sequel)

    Mark A. Cohen

    Last week, we discussed why corporate legal departments are taking on so much more work themselves instead of outsourcing it to law firms. This is, of course, an ominous sign for law firms and the traditional partnership structure. So too is disaggregation and the emergence of legal service providers as well as others — notably the Big Four — poised to enter the gargantuan legal services market, says Mark A. Cohen of Legal Mosaic LLC.

  • IPR Motions To Amend: Rays Of Hope Despite Gloomy Stats

    Monica Grewal

    The America Invents Act permits patent owners to move to amend claims of a patent subject to inter partes review. However, attempts to amend claims have been largely unsuccessful to date, and some of the hurdles patent owners face are not set forth in the rules. The patent office has left patent owners to sift through Patent Trial and Appeal Board and Federal Circuit decisions to understand the state of motion to amend practice, sa... (continued)

  • Fed. Circ. Pushes Pause Button On Section 101 Challenges

    Evan Rothstein

    Last week, the Federal Circuit imposed important limitations on the post-Alice doctrine of software patent invalidity, and patent owners everywhere could be heard sighing in relief. While most post-Alice software patent cases have turned on the second step of the two-step process for determining validity, Enfish makes the first step more meaningful, say Evan Rothstein and Patrick Hall of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck LLP.

  • High Court Is Lost In The Woods With The Laws Of Nature

    David S. VanVliet

    The current framework for determining patentability — the two-step process described in Alice — should be discarded based on the Constitution and the U.S. Supreme Court’s own adoption of the canons of statutory construction. Ariosa v. Sequenom has a cert petition pending and is the court's opportunity to get back on the right path, says David VanVliet of Armstrong Teasdale LLP.

  • New Whistleblower Protections Could Endanger Trade Secrets

    Steven J. Pearlman

    Several new laws protecting whistleblowers could jeopardize employers’ trade secrets by allowing them to be disclosed to the government, which presents the risk that Freedom of Information Act officers will exercise their discretion to produce trade secrets to requesters and potentially impair their value, say attorneys at Proskauer Rose LLP.