Tag Archives: judicial review

A few initial thoughts on Loper Bright and the end of Chevron Deference

by Dennis Crouch

This is just a first look at how overturning Chevron may impact patent practice. 

In the past, both the USPTO and patent attorneys have largely ignored the larger scope of administrative law, but in recent years USPTO operations have been under tighter control from the White House, and courts have increasingly asked whether the agency is following the rules.  Administrative patent law was truly launched with  the American Invents Act of 2011 and the resulting administrative patent trials by the PTAB — resulting in hundreds of appeals arguing that the USPTO’s procedural approach is an abuse of administrative power.  Importantly, the Supreme Court in Cuozzo Speed Techs. v. Com. for Intell. Prop., 579 U.S. 261 (2016) provided the patent office with Chevron deference for its determinations regarding AIA trials, including issues such as its approach to claim construction.  But Chevron has now been overruled, and many are wanting the Federal Circuit to revisit the USPTO approach.

Although I expect that the outcome (more…)

Veterans’ Benefits at the Supreme Court: The Battle Over Benefit-of-the-Doubt

by Dennis Crouch

In April 2024, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in the consolidated cases of Bufkin v. McDonough and Thornton v. McDonough, two veterans’ benefits cases on appeal from the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The cases involve the “benefit-of-the-doubt” rule, a longstanding principle that is codified in veterans law that requires the VA to resolve close or unclear issues in a veteran’s favor when adjudicating benefits claims. [SCT Docket]

Both Bufkin and Thornton are veterans who were denied disability benefits by the VA. (more…)