Means-Plus-Function Claims Are Dangerous in Software Patents

The latest example of the danger of drafting software patent claims to include means-plus-function limitations comes from Eon Corp. IP Holdings LLC v. AT&T Mobility LLC, No. 2014-1392 (Fed. Cir. May 6, 2015).  U.S. Patent No. 5,663,757 included eight “means” limitations that the district court had held indefinite under 35 U.S.C. 112.  These limitations required […]

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Reasonable Non-Infringement Positions Relying on Court’s Claim Construction Negates Willful Patent Infringement Argument

Because Fairchild Semiconductor (a counterclaim defendant) had advanced credible non-infringement positions, the court denied a summary judgment motion seeking a finding of willful infringement in Fairchild Semiconductor Corp. v. Power Integrations, Inc., No. 12-540-LPS (D. Del. April 23, 2015). The court here followed the two part test established in In re Seagate Technology, LLC, to […]

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Software Patent Claims Are Invalid Under 35 U.S.C. § 101 Without Magic (Statutory) Words

A savvy drafter of software patent claims will, to use one of the worst legal cliches, exalt form over substance.  Software in general unquestionably can be patent-eligible even after Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International.  Undoubtedly, no magic words can promise that a software patent claim will be found patent-eligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101.  […]

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Single Patent Yields Two Results (for now) on the Question of Patent-Eligibility

A court held one independent claim of U.S. Patent No. 8,332,475 patent-eligible, and another not, in Triplay, Inc. v. Whatsapp Inc., No. 13-1703-LPS (D. Del. April 28, 2015). Alleging that claimed subject matter encompassed an abstract idea, and thus that patent claims were invalid under 35 U.S.C. § 101, the Defendant had moved for dismissal […]

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Divided Infringement Results in Judgment on Pleadings on Induced Infringement

Finding that a complaint failed to sufficiently allege that the defendant exercised direction or control over all asserted steps of a method patent claim, a court has dismissed a complaint alleging induced infringement under FRCP 12(c). Robert Mankes v. Vivid Seats, Limited, No. 5:13-CV-717-FL, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24327 (E.D.N.C. Feb 26, 2015). Based on […]

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Patent Claims Drawn to Managing Shipping Containers Held Patent-Ineligible

Illustrating that business method patent claims face an uphill battle for patent-eligibility after Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank Int’l., a court has invalidated, under 35 U.S.C. § 101, claims directed to a “container monitoring system for accumulating and storing information on shipping containers including container location and container load status.” Wireless Media Innovations […]

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Patent Claims in Intellectual Ventures Case Held Patent-Eligible Where No Application Without a Computer; Other Claims Held Patent-Ineligible

Considering claims of various patents-in-suit, a court drew a patent-eligibility line at the point where claims could be practiced without a computer, invalidating claims of two patents, but upholding claims of a third, under 35 U.S.C. § 101. Intellectual Ventures I LLC v. Symantec Corp., no 1:10-cv-01067, Intellectual Ventures I LLC v. Trend Micro Inc., […]

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Patent-Eligibility Can Be Deferred Until Claim Construction

Although many courts are often willing to rule on patent-eligibility under 35 U.S.C. § 101 at the pleadings stage, sometimes courts are more comfortable deferring the issue until claim construction. An interesting recent example is Mobile-Plan-It LLC v. Facebook Inc., no. 3:14-cv-01709 (N.D. Cal. April 20, 2015), where patent claims directed to a “method for […]

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DDR Holdings Saves Patent-Eligibility of SMS Messaging Claims

Surviving a patent-eligibility challenge under 35 U.S.C. § 101 were patent claims drawn to a “method of using a computer system to facilitate two-way communication between a mobile device and an Internet server.” Messaging Gateway Solutions LLC v. Amdocs Inc., No. 1:14-cv-00732 (D. Del. April 15, 2015). Accordingly, the court denied defendants’ motions for judgment […]

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