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Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly quotes Ron Cahill in “Federal Circuit opens door for patent cases”

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07.31.2014

Ronald E. Cahill, chair of Nutter’s Intellectual Property Litigation practice group, was quoted by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly in “Federal Circuit opens door for patent cases” on July 31. The article discusses the Federal Circuit’s July 11 ruling in Troy v. Samson Manufacturing Corp., in which a three judge panel held that an aggrieved party can introduce new evidence in appeals if the evidence in question is otherwise admissible under the Federal Rules of Evidence and Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Until the Troy decision, which originated out of Massachusetts, federal District Court judges across the country typically prohibited counsel from presenting any legal issues that had not been raised below.

Ron notes that interference proceedings eventually will become obsolete under the America Invents Acts and will be replaced with derivation proceedings. The question in derivation proceedings will be whether a non-inventor derived an invention from the inventor and applied for a patent without the authorization of the inventor. “[Troy] basically says that you now get a whole new trial,” he said. “What it means is that you can now put in whatever evidence you want on whatever issue you want. And that’s a significant change.” Ron points out that it will not impact post-grant proceedings or inter partes reviews (the statute allows those matters to be appealed only to the Federal Circuit.) “The point of having a formal proceeding is that you’re supposed to be able to narrow issues, not try them and then, if you don’t win, get to just start over again from scratch,” Ron said. “This decision blows things up. To me, it doesn’t seem like a good way to go about it, but we’ll have to see.”

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