PTAB Says State Sovereign Immunity Applies To IPRs

Law360, New York (January 26, 2017, 4:01 PM EST) -- The Patent Trial and Appeal Board decided Wednesday that state sovereign immunity applies to America Invents Act inter partes reviews, preventing Covidien from challenging a University of Florida patent related to health care computer information systems.

In what appears to be a case of first impression, the PTAB held that states’ protections under the 11th Amendment against legal actions extends to inter partes review and that UF, as an arm of the state of Florida, was immune to Covidien LP’s challenge to its patent.

“Petitioner does not point to, and we do not find there is, an unequivocal, express intent by...

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