Featured / FedCircuitBlog

Welcome to Fed Circuit Blog

I’m excited to introduce you to Fed Circuit Blog, a project of the Tsai Center for Law, Science and Innovation at the SMU Dedman School of Law. This blog provides comprehensive coverage of activities and news related to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

In several ways the Federal Circuit is a unique court. Given that it has exclusive jurisdiction over appeals in various types of federal cases, unless the Supreme Court reviews its opinions, these opinions govern nationwide.

The court’s exclusive jurisdiction includes appeals in patent cases. Given the impact of patents on the development and use of technology, the Federal Circuit holds an important place in the innovation ecosystem. As a result, Fed Circuit Blog will provide particular insight into the law governing patent cases and its impact on the innovation ecosystem. That said, Fed Circuit Blog will extend its coverage of the court to other areas of the court’s jurisdiction.

So exactly what information will Fed Circuit Blog provide?

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Opinions

Breaking News – Federal Circuit Issues Two Important Unpublished Orders

Today the Federal Circuit issued, but did not publish on its website, two important nonprecedential orders in patent and trademark cases. These orders represent the continuing fall out from the Federal Circuit’s opinion in Arthrex, Inc. v. Smith & Nephew, Inc. that the Secretary of Commerce’s appointment of Administrative Patent Judges to the Patent Trial and Appeal Board violates the Appointments Clause of the U.S. Constitution. Hat tip to Sharon Israel at Shook, Hardy & Bacon L.L.P. for alerting us about these orders.

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Argument Recap

Argument Recap – American Institute for International Steel, Inc. v. United States

Last week the Federal Circuit heard three cases that attracted amicus briefs. In the last of these three cases, American Institute for International Steel, Inc. v. United States, the American Institute for International Steel (and its co-appellants) presented two questions to the Federal Circuit related to the Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962. As we noted in our argument preview, these questions ask whether Congress unconstitutionally delegated its legislative authority to the President. Last Friday, the parties presented their arguments to a panel of the court that included Judges Taranto, Stoll, and Schall. Here is our recap of those arguments.

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Opinions

Today’s Opinions – January 17, 2020

This morning the Federal Circuit issued two nonprecedential opinions in Merit Systems Protection Board cases. Here are the introductions to the opinions.

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News

Recent News on the Federal Circuit

Here is a report on recent news and commentary related to the Federal Circuit and its cases. Today’s report includes highlights of amicus briefs filed in Google LLC v. Oracle America, Inc., a report on oral arguments heard before the Supreme Court in Romag Fasteners, Inc. v. Fossil, Inc., and a comment on the Supreme Court’s recent denial of certiorari in five petitions related to patent eligibility.

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Argument Recap / Featured

Argument Recap – Romag Fasteners, Inc. v. Fossil, Inc.

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Romag Fasteners, Inc. v. Fossil, Inc. As we noted in our argument preview, in this case the Court is considering whether, to recover a trademark infringer’s profit, a trademark owner must prove that the infringer infringed willfully. Here is our argument recap.

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Opinions

Today’s Opinions – January 16, 2020

This morning the Federal Circuit issued one precedential opinion in a case involving a claim for death benefits under the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits Act. Here is the introduction to the opinion.

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Petitions / Supreme Court Activity

Recent Supreme Court Activity

Here is an update on recent activity at the Supreme Court in cases decided by the Federal Circuit. As for merits cases, highlights include an oral argument and a slew of amicus briefs, respectively, in two cases. As for petitions, only one new petition was filed, and just a handful of response and reply briefs were filed. The Supreme Court, however, denied petitions in a large number of cases, including most notably in Athena, Hikma, and HP, as we previously discussed. Here are the details.

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Argument Recap

Argument Recap – Sanford Health Plan v. United States

Last week the Federal Circuit heard three cases that attracted amicus briefs. In one of these three cases, Sanford Health Plan v. United States, the United States presented two questions to the Federal Circuit related to the Affordable Care Act. As we noted in our argument preview, these questions ask whether health insurance companies may recover cost-sharing payments identified in the ACA but never funded by Congress. Last Thursday, the United States, Sanford Health Plan, and third party Community Health Plan (whose case was consolidated with Sanford for the oral argument) presented their arguments to a panel of the court that included Judges Dyk, Bryson, and Taranto. This is our recap of those arguments.

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Opinions

Today’s Opinions – January 15, 2020

This morning the Federal Circuit issued one nonprecedential opinion in a patent case and one Rule 36 judgment. Here is the introduction to the opinion and a link to the Rule 36 judgment.

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En Banc Activity / Petitions

Recent En Banc Activity

Here is an update on recent en banc activity at the Federal Circuit in patent cases. Notably, much of the activity relates in some way to Arthrex, Inc. v. Smith & Nephew, Inc. Highlights include three new petitions (including two petitions raising questions related to waiver of arguments similar to those made in Arthrex), a response in opposition to a petition also making arguments raised in Arthrex, briefing on a motion raising arguments related to Arthrex, requests for responses in three cases (including, notably, Arthrex itself), and the denial of two petitions raising questions related to patent eligibility. Here are the details.

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