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Authors Guild v. Google, Inc.

Plaintiff-appellants, who are authors of published books under copyright, appeal from the judgment of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (Chin, J.) in favor of Defendant Google, Inc. Plaintiffs sued Google, alleging that its Library Project and Google Books project infringe Plaintiffs’ copyrights. Through these projects, Google makes and retains digital copies of books submitted to it by major libraries, allows the libraries that submitted a book to download and retain a digital copy, and allows the public to search the texts of the digitally copied books and see displays of snippets of text. The district court granted summary judgment based on its conclusion that Google’s copying is fair use under 17 U.S.C. §107 and is therefore not infringing. The Court of Appeals concludes that the defendant’s copying is transformative within the meaning of Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc., 510 U.S. 569, 578-585 (1994), does not offer the public a meaningful substitute for matter protected by the plaintiffs’ copyrights, and satisfies § 107’s test for fair use. AFFIRMED.

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In re: Morsa

This case presents the second time that this court reviews whether a publication entitled Peter Martin Associates Press Release, dated September 27, 1999 (“PMA”), anticipates the claimed invention. In the original case, we remanded the claims to the United States Patent and Trademark Office, Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“Board”) for the Board to consider Mr. Morsa’s arguments concerning the enablement of the PMA reference. In re Morsa, 713 F.3d 104, 112 (Fed. Cir. 2013) (“Morsa I”). On remand, the Board determined that the reference was enabling. Appellant’s Informal Br. App. 7. Mr. Morsa argues that the reference was not enabling. See generally Appellant’s Informal Br. We disagree with Mr. Morsa and therefore affirm.

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Sovereign Military Hospitaller v. The Florida Priory of the Knights Hospitallers

This appeal is the second in a long-running intellectual property dispute between two religious organizations. The Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta alleges that the Florida Priory of the Knights Hospitallers of the Sovereign Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, the Ecumenical Order is infringing its registered service marks in violation of the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1114, and Florida law. After a bench trial, the district court entered judgment for the Florida Priory. See Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes & of Malta v. Fla. Priory of the Knights Hospitallers of the Sovereign Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, the Ecumenical Order (SMOM I), 816 F. Supp. 2d 1290, 1307–08 (S.D. Fla. 2011). In the first appeal, we reversed in part and remanded for the district court to reconsider whether the parties’ marks are likely to be confused. See Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes & of Malta v. Fla. Priory of the Knights Hospitallers of the Sovereign Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, the Ecumenical Order (SMOM II), 702 F.3d 1279, 1297–98 (11th Cir. 2012). We were also critical of disparaging comments that the district judge made about the parties. On remand, the district court misapplied several factors in its analysis of likely confusion, incorrectly assessed the Florida Priory’s defense of prior use, relied on historical testimony that we previously deemed inadmissible, and misinterpreted our instructions about consulting facts outside the record. Because the district court erred again, we reverse again. But we deny the Sovereign Order’s request to reassign the case to a different district judge.

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Spectrum Pharma., Inc. v. Sandoz Inc.

Spectrum Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (“Spectrum”) appeals from the decisions of the United States District Court for the District of Nevada holding claims 1–2 of U.S. Patent 6,500,829 (“the ’829 patent”) invalid as obvious, and finding claims 5–9 of the ’829 patent not infringed by the submission of an Abbreviated New Drug Application (“ANDA”) by Sandoz Inc. (“Sandoz”). Spectrum Pharm., Inc. v. Sandoz Inc., No. 2:12-cv-00111, 2015 WL 794674 (D. Nev. Feb. 25, 2015) (“Trial Order”); Spectrum Pharm., Inc. v. Sandoz Inc., No. 2:12-cv-00111, 2014 WL 7368845 (D. Nev. Dec. 29, 2014) (“Summary Judgment Order”). Because the district court did not err in concluding that claims 1–2 are invalid, and additionally did not clearly err in finding claims 5–9 not infringed by Sandoz’s ANDA product, we affirm.

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Shukh v. Seagate Tech., LLC

Alexander Shukh appeals from the district court’s dismissal of some of his claims for failure to state a claim and its grants of summary judgment on his remaining claims in favor of the defendants, Seagate Technology, LLC; Seagate Technology, Inc.; Seagate Technology; and Seagate Technology PLC (collectively, “Seagate”). Dr. Shukh also appeals from several of the court’s discovery orders and other ancillary orders. For the reasons discussed below, we vacate and remand the court’s grant of summary judgment on Dr. Shukh’s claim for correction of inventorship under 35 U.S.C. § 256 and affirm its remaining holdings.

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In re: Steed

Thomas Steed, Sourav Bhattacharya, and Sandeep Seshadrijois (collectively “Steed” or “Applicants”) appeal the decision of the United States Patent and Trademark Office Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“Board”) affirming the rejection of claims 37 and 39–51 of United States Patent Application No. 10/819,600 (“the ’600 Application”) on the ground of obviousness, 35 U.S.C. § 103.1 Remaining claims 52–54 were subject to a restriction requirement at the time of the Board proceeding and were not considered by the Board. Bd. Op. at 4–5. We now affirm the Board’s decision.

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Achates Reference Publ'g, Inc. v. Apple Inc.

Achates Reference Publishing, Inc. (“Achates”) appeals from the decisions of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (the “Board”) in inter partes review (“IPR”) proceedings instituted on petitions filed by Apple Inc. (“Apple”) against Achates’ U.S. Patents No. 5,982,889 (the “’889 patent”) and No. 6,173,403 (the “’403 patent”) (collectively, the “patents-at-issue”) and determining that claims 1–4 of the ’889 patent and claims 1–12 and 17–19 of the ’403 patent were invalid. See Apple Inc. v. Achates Reference Publ’g, Inc., IPR2013-00081, 2014 WL 2530789 (P.T.A.B. June 2, 2014) (“’889 final written decision”); Apple Inc. v. Achates Reference Publ’g, Inc., IPR2013-00080, 2014 WL 2530788 (P.T.A.B. June 2, 2014) (“’403 final written decision”). Achates contends that the Board’s decisions were outside of the Board’s statutory authority because the underlying petitions for IPR were time-barred under 35 U.S.C. § 315(b). As part of its appeal, Achates also challenges the Board’s denial of Achates’ motion for discovery. See Apple Inc. v. Achates Reference Publ’g, Inc., 2013 WL 6514049 (P.T.A.B. Apr. 3, 2013) (“Discovery Decision”). Because the Board’s determinations to institute IPRs in this case are final and nonappealable under 35 U.S.C. § 314(d), this court lacks jurisdiction and dismisses the appeals.

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Nordock, Inc. v. Systems, Inc.

Nordock, Inc. (“Nordock”) filed suit against Systems, Inc. (“Systems”) in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin alleging infringement of U.S. Design Patent No. D579,754 (“the D’754 Patent”), which claims the ornamental design of a lip and hinge plate for a dock leveler. A jury found that Systems’ hydraulic dock levelers infringe the D’754 Patent, and that the patent is not invalid. The district court entered judgment awarding Nordock $46,825 in damages as a reasonable royalty.

Both parties filed post-trial motions to amend the judgment pursuant to Rule 59 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Specifically, Nordock filed a motion to amend the judgment regarding damages, or in the alternative, for a new trial. Systems also sought to amend the judgment, arguing that there was insufficient evidence to support the jury’s finding of infringement with respect to Systems’ 6 ½ foot dock levelers. The district court denied both motions. Nordock, Inc. v. Sys., Inc., No. 11-C-118, 2014 WL 3786277 (E.D. Wis. July 31, 2014) (“Rule 59 Decision”).

Nordock appeals the district court’s decision denying its request for a new trial on damages. Systems crossappeals from the court’s decisions denying its oral motion for judgment as a matter of law (“JMOL”) as to validity of the D’754 Patent and denying its post-trial Rule 59(e) motion. Because we find that the district court erred in its assessment of design patent damages under 35 U.S.C. § 289, we vacate the damages award and remand for a new trial on damages. With respect to Systems’ crossappeal, we affirm the district court’s decisions: (1) denying Systems’ motion for JMOL as to the validity of the D’754 Patent; and (2) denying Systems’ Rule 59(e) motion with respect to the 6 ½ foot dock levelers. Accordingly, we affirm in part, vacate in part, and remand for further proceedings.

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Vermont v. MPHJ Tech. Inv., LLC

On May 8, 2013, Plaintiff-Appellee State of Vermont (“Vermont” or “the State”) filed a state court action against Defendant-Appellant MPHJ Technology Investments LLC (“MPHJ”) alleging violations of the Vermont Consumer Protection Act, 9 V.S.A. §§ 2451 et seq. (“VCPA”). The complaint alleged that letters mailed to Vermont businesses informing them that they may be infringing certain patents were deceptive and otherwise violative of the VCPA. MPHJ removed the case twice to the United States District Court for the District of Vermont, once under the State’s original complaint (“original complaint”) and once under the State’s amended complaint (“amended complaint”). The district court remanded the case to state court both times. Before this court is MPHJ’s appeal of the district court’s second remand order. Because removal under § 1442(a)(2) is not authorized in the circumstances at issue here, and MPHJ does not appeal the district court’s other removal rulings in the second remand order, we affirm.

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Shire LLC v. Amneal Pharma., LLC

In this consolidated Hatch-Waxman Act litigation, Amneal Pharmaceuticals, LLC, Actavis Elizabeth LLC, Actavis LLC, Mylan Inc., Mylan Pharmaceuticals Inc., Roxane Laboratories, Inc., Sandoz Inc. (collectively the “ANDA defendants”) and Johnson Matthey Pharmaceutical Materials (“Johnson Matthey”) (collectively, “defendants”) appeal the district court’s decision in Shire, LLC v. Amneal Pharmaceuticals, LLC, No. 11-3781, 2014 WL 2861430 (D.N.J. June 23, 2014) (“Op.”), granting Shire LLC, Shire Development Inc. and Shire Development, LLC’s (collectively “Shire’s”) motion for summary judgment that claim 4 of the U.S. Patent No. 7,105,486 (the “’486 patent”); claims 1–4 of U.S. Patent No. 7,655,630 (the “’630 patent”); claims 1–12 of U.S. Patent No. 7,659,253 (the “’253 patent”); and claim 3 of U.S. Patent No. 7,662,787 (the “’787 patent”) (collectively, the “asserted claims”) are not invalid. Defendants also appeal the district court’s decision in Shire, LLC v. Amneal Pharmaceuticals, LLC, No. 11-3781 (D.N.J. May 12, 2014), affirming the magistrate judge’s decision denying defendants’ motion to amend their invalidity contentions to include an on-sale bar claim, see Shire, LLC v. Amneal Pharms., LLC, No. 11-3781, 2013 WL 6858953 (D.N.J. Dec. 26, 2013) (“Magistrate Op.”). Johnson Matthey separately appeals the district court’s decision that it induced infringement of the claims of the ’630, ’253 and ’787 patents (the “compound claims”) by providing the active pharmaceutical ingredient (“API”) L-lysine-d-amphetamine (“LDX”) dimesylate to the ANDA defendants. Because defendants have failed to raise a genuine issue of material fact that the asserted claims are obvious, we affirm the district court’s judgment of nonobviousness. Because the district court did not abuse its discretion in denying defendants’ motion to amend their invalidity contentions to include an on-sale bar claim, we affirm that ruling. Because in the circumstances of this case Johnson Matthey cannot be liable for induced infringement prior to the grant of FDA approval of the application filed by the ANDA defendants, we reverse the district court’s judgment that Johnson Matthey has induced infringement of the asserted compound claims and remand the case for further proceedings consistent with this opinion. 

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