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Archive for December 13th, 2012

Patent Trial & Appeal Board Shuts Down Patent Reexamination

Posted On: Dec. 13, 2012   By: Scott A. McKeown
PTAB-reexaminationConcurrent Post Grant Proceedings with the Same Real Party in Interest

One of the more intriguing aspects of the new patentability trials of the America Invents Act (AIA) is their potential interplay with legacy post grant proceedings such as patent reissue, ex parte and inter partes patent reexamination. In formulating the rules to implement the new AIA proceedings, namely, Inter Partes Review (IPR), Post Grant Review (PGR) and the Covered Business Method (CBM) review, the USPTO did not specifically define how conflicting proceedings would be processed. For example, the first half of 35 U.S.C. § 325(d) explains that the Board may provide for the ”stay, transfer, consolidation, or termination” of either of the conflicting proceedings. Exactly how those determinations would be made was explained as a “case-by-case basis.”

The first PTAB proceeding to examine such issues is IPR 2013-00033. In this proceeding, CBS Interactive petitioned for IPR of patent 7,155,241, assigned to Helferich Patent Licensing. The petition challenged several of the patent’s dependent claims. Concurrently, an inter partes patent reexamination (95/001,864) is also pending, challenging all the of independent claims in the patent. The IPR and reexamination did not challenge any of the same claims, but the same real party in interest asserted some of the same grounds of unpatentability with respect to the same prior art.  In examining the potential conflict between the proceedings, the PTAB opted to stay the reexamination proceeding pending termination/completion of the Review, explaining: Read the rest of this entry »