The IP Beacon, June 2014

06/21/2014

The IP Beacon is a Haynes and Boone Newsletter highlighting current issues in Intellectual Property Law. Articles featured in the June 2014 issue include:

Supreme Court Hedges Risk for Defendant CLS Bank on Business Method Patentability; Net Effect on All Business Method Patents Remains Unclear 

On June 19, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its unanimous decision in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International, Case No.13-298, holding that a patent claim to the idea of intermediated settlement is directed to an abstract idea and that implementation of that abstract idea on a "generic computer" does not make it patent eligible under Section 101 of the U.S. Patent Act. 

Supreme Court Adopts New Indefiniteness Standard

On June 2, 2014, the Supreme Court established a new legal test to determine whether a patent claim satisfies the definiteness requirement of 35 U.S.C. §112. The Court held "that a patent is invalid for indefiniteness if its claims, read in light of the specification delineating the patent, and the prosecution history, fail to inform, with reasonable certainty, those skilled in the art about the scope of the invention." 

Supreme Court Holds Federal Unfair Competition Claim Not Precluded by FDA's Food and Beverage Labeling Regulations

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that competitors may bring private suits alleging unfair competition under the Lanham Act based on misleading and deceptive food and beverage labels that are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration ("FDA"), overruling a Ninth Circuit decision. 

Supreme Court Confirms Broad Reach of Lanham Act False Advertising Claims

Confronted with three different standing tests applied by the Circuit courts to Lanham Act false advertising claims, the Supreme Court rejected them all in favor of a "zone of interests" test. 

Supreme Court to Determine Legality of TV Retransmissions Over the Internet

Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear American Broadcasting Companies Inc., et al., v. Aereo, Inc. to determine whether television retransmissions over the Internet violate copyright law. 

Expediting Your Patent Application: Let us Count (or Define) the Ways

Expediting a U.S. patent application can be highly desirable since the average pendency from filing to issuance is about three years on average, and can be even longer in certain technology areas or if an appeal to the Patent Trial & Appeal Board is required. 

Forcing Patent Owners to Fess Up: Proposed PTO Rules Regarding "Attributable Owners"

The PTO is considering new rules requiring the disclosure of the "attributable owner" of patents and patent applications. The proposed rules are intended to provide the PTO and the public with more complete information regarding patent ownership.

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