What High Court Is Considering In Assignor Estoppel Case

Law360 (April 23, 2021, 6:10 PM EDT) -- The U.S. Supreme Court heard argument on April 21 in Minerva Surgical Inc. v. Hologic Inc. At stake is the continued vitality, or not, of the doctrine of assignor estoppel.

Put generally, that rule holds that one who assigns patent rights may not later challenge their validity. The underlying rationale, sometimes uncharitably labeled bait-and-switch, is that the assignor should not be entitled to receive the pecuniary or other benefits of sale, on the one hand, while being able to attack the legitimacy of that property later, particularly when engaging in activity arguably covered by patent claims stemming from the assigned rights....

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