Supreme Court decision

On January 20, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision casting aside the Federal Circuit’s longstanding rule that all district court claim construction rulings must be reviewed de novo.  In particular, the Supreme Court held that some claim construction decisions involve factual findings, and thus, are entitled to deference and should be reviewed on appeal for clear error.  In the decision, the Supreme Court further vacated a July 2013 decision, in which the Federal Circuit invalidated several patents covering Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc.’s multiple sclerosis drug Copaxon.  The decision thereafter remanded the case back to the Federal Circuit for further proceedings under the new standard.

By:  Jacqueline A. DiRamio

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