Patent Case Summaries September 7, 2022

Patent Case Summaries | Week Ending September 2, 2022

A weekly summary of the precedential patent-related opinions issued by the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the opinions designated precedential or informative by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board.

INVT SPE LLC v. ITC, No. 2020-1903 (Fed. Cir. (ITC) Aug. 31, 2022). Opinion by Chen, joined by Newman and Taranto. 

INVT appealed a final determination by the International Trade Commission finding that Apple, HTC, and ZTE did not violate 19 U.S.C. § 1337 (Section 337) by importing and selling certain personal electronic devices. INVT appealed, challenging the Commission’s determinations regarding two of the asserted patents. 

As to the first patent, the Federal Circuit ruled that the Commission’s determination was moot based on the patent’s expiration. The court explained that the Commission can only grant remedies that apply to future conduct, and those remedies are unavailable once a patent expires. The Federal Circuit rejected INVT’s argument that the appeal was not moot in view of a stayed district court litigation involving the same patent because there was “no potential for collateral consequences resulting from the possible stare decisis effect.”

As to the second patent, the Federal Circuit affirmed the Commission’s determination that INVT failed to show infringement and the existence of a domestic industry. The court agreed with INVT that the computer-implemented claims are drawn to “capability” requiring “some showing that the accused computer-implemented device is programmed or otherwise configured, without modification, to perform the claimed function when in operation.” But here “INVT failed to introduce any evidence to establish that the accused devices, when put into operation, will ever perform the particular functions recited in the asserted claims.”

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