Tag Archives: patent term adjustment

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…)

The NYIPLA Brief: Advocating for Patent Term Adjustments

by Dennis Crouch

The Federal Circuit’s 2023 decision in In re Cellect, LLC, 81 F.4th 1216 (Fed. Cir. 2023) has set the stage for a potentially significant Supreme Court case on the interplay between the Patent Term Adjustment (PTA) statute, 35 U.S.C. § 154(b), and the judicially-created doctrine of obviousness-type double patenting (ODP). Cellect is now seeking certiorari, and the New York Intellectual Property Law Association (NYIPLA) has stepped in with an amicus brief supporting the petition, arguing that the case presents “questions of exceptional importance.” Brief for New York Intellectual Property Law Association as Amicus Curiae Supporting Petitioner at 23, Cellect, LLC v. Vidal, No. 23-1231 (U.S. May 28, 2024). (more…)

Cellect or Reject? SCOTUS Asked to Consider Fate of ODP Doctrine

by Dennis Crouch

In its new petition for certiorari in Cellect LLC v. Vidal, No. __ (U.S. May 20, 2024), Cellect argues that the Federal Circuit erred in upholding the PTAB’s (PTAB) invalidation of Cellect’s four patents based on the judicially-created doctrine of obviousness-type double patenting (ODP). The key issue is whether ODP can cut short the patent term extension provided by the Patent Term Adjustment (PTA) statute, 35 U.S.C. § 154(b). Meanwhile, Dir. Vidal is looking to extend the power of ODP via rulemaking. This is an important case coming at an important time.  (more…)

Patent Term Adjustment and Obviousness-Type Double Patenting: Cellect’s Bid for Supreme Court Review

by Dennis Crouch

The Federal Circuit’s August 2023 decision in In re Cellect, LLC has set-up a significant question regarding the interplay between the patent term adjustment (PTA) statute, 35 U.S.C. § 154(b), and the judicially-created doctrine of obviousness-type double patenting (OTDP). Now, Cellect is seeking Supreme Court review, recently filing a petition for an extension of time that also indicated its intent to file. Cellect’s petition is now due May 20, 2024, and I expect significant support from the patent owner community.

Patentees often receive PTA due to USPTO delays that otherwise eat into the 20-year patent term.  A fundamental issue in Cellect boils down to whether a patentee must forfeit their PTA term extensions to avoid an OTDP invalidity finding.  This comes up in situations where a patentee has two patents that cover only slightly different inventions.  Most often this is seen in family-member continuation applications, but it can also arise when applicants file several applications all within a short period.

Under the judge-made law of OTDP (more…)