October 1, 2013
This morning, the United States Supreme Court granted writs of certiorari in two patent cases, Octane Fitness, LLC v. Icon Health and Fitness, Inc. and Highmark, Inc. v. Allcare Health Management Systems, Inc.
The Octane Fitness case involves a challenge to the Federal Circuit standard for determining whether a case is “exceptional” under 35 U.S.C. § 285. In October of 2012, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, in an unpublished decision, affirmed the denial of a motion for exceptional case sanctions. The court refused to address Octane Fitness’s request to lower the standard for exceptionality to an “objectively unreasonable” standard, holding, “We have no reason to revisit the settled standard for exceptionality.”
The Highmark case similarly relates to the “exceptional case” statute. In that case, the question presented is whether the district court’s exceptional case finding is entitled to deference. The Highmark certiorari petition also addresses the question of whether claim construction should be reviewed de novo.
Fitch Even attorneys are monitoring these cases and will report once the Supreme Court has issued its decisions.
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