exceptional case : CAFC Alert

The Supreme Court’s Recent Lowering of the Evidentiary Standard for Awarding Legal Fees in the Octane Case Turns-Up the Heat on Aggressive Patentees

Stephen Parker | April 24, 2015

Oplus Technologies, Ltd. v. Vizio, Inc.

April 10, 2015

Before: Prost, Moore, and O’Malley. Opinion by Moore.

Summary

Despite the district court’s determination that non-practicing-entity-plaintiff Oplus Technologies, Ltd.’s counsel, Niro, Haller & Niro, had engaged in “exceptional” litigation misconduct, the district court determined that attorney fees should not be awarded to defendants.  Upon appeal by defendant Vizio, Inc. of the denial of attorney fees, the Federal Circuit vacated and remanded the decision back to the district court to force the district court to reconsider its decision not to award attorney fees in light of the district court’s own fact findings showing a high extent of harassing, unprofessional and vexatious misconduct of plaintiff’s counsel and in view of the Supreme Court’s subsequent changing of the evidentiary standard for awarding legal fees in the Octane case to a preponderance of the evidence standard from the former clear and convincing evidence standard.


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Joint Inventorship of a novel compound may exist even if co-inventor only developed method of making

Bernadette McGann | January 25, 2012

Falana v. Kent State University and Alexander J. Seed

January 23, 2012

Panel:  Linn, Prost and Reyna.  Opinion by Linn.

Summary

The CAFC held that a putative inventor who envisioned the structure of a novel chemical compound and contributed to the method of making that compound is a joint inventor of a claim covering that compound.  One may be a joint inventor even if co-inventor’s contribution to conception is merely a method of making the claimed product and said co-inventor does not synthesize the claimed compound.


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