Chinese Telecom Company Indicted for Theft of Trade Secrets

The United States has charged tech company Huawei with trade secret theft,  wire fraud, and obstruction of justice.  The DOJ alleges that the company took photos and measurements of a phone-testing robot and used that information to build a similar device. Huawei denied the theft, claiming it was the work of miscreants; however, recent emailsContinue reading “Chinese Telecom Company Indicted for Theft of Trade Secrets”

USPTO Suggests New Effort to Clarify Patent Eligibility

USPTO Director Iancu recently proposed new patent eligibility guidelines at the quarterly meeting of the Patent Public Advisory Committee (PPAC).  Iancu noted that clarity is needed both by examiners and applicants asking, “how can a claim be novel enough to pass 102 and nonobvious enough to pass 103, yet lack an “inventive concept” and thereforeContinue reading “USPTO Suggests New Effort to Clarify Patent Eligibility”

Supreme Court Holds that Tribal Sovereign Immunity Cannot Be Used to Shield Against USPTO Proceedings

Drug company Allergan transferred its Restasis drug patents to a Mohawk tribe in upstate NY.  Under the deal, Allergan paid the Indian tribe $13.75 million and agreed to further payment of $15 million in annual royalties while the patents were in force. In exchange, the tribe agreed to lease the patents back to Allergan andContinue reading “Supreme Court Holds that Tribal Sovereign Immunity Cannot Be Used to Shield Against USPTO Proceedings”

Supreme Court to Hear On-Sale Bar Case

The Supreme Court recently granted a petition for writ of certiori in Helsinn Healthcare S.A. v. Teva Pharm. USA, Inc.  The court will be asked to determine whether the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) bars an inventor from selling to a third party when that third party has a duty of confidentiality to the seller. Continue reading “Supreme Court to Hear On-Sale Bar Case”

Is it Safe to Use a “Dead” Trademark?

Cancellation of a trademark registration does not extinguish common law trademark rights. If the owner continues to use the mark after abandonment or cancellation by the USPTO, that owner will still enjoy common law protections allowing for use within the current “zone of commerce.”  While it may possible to register a canceled or abandoned mark,Continue reading “Is it Safe to Use a “Dead” Trademark?”

Louis Vitton Doesn’t See the Humor

A hand bag company called My Other Bag (MOB) has been engaged in a long legal battle with Louis Vitton.  The company claimed that MOB’s canvas tote bags depicting images of Louis Vitton bags was an infringing use of their copyrights and trademarks and was diluting their brands. The District Court for the Southern DistrictContinue reading “Louis Vitton Doesn’t See the Humor”

Use Caution When Threatening an IP Action in the U.K.

“Threatening” a potential infringer for acts performed in the UK will now be governed by a new Intellectual Property Unjustified Threats Act. The act took effect on October 1, 2017 and outlines “permitted communications” between potential adversaries in patent, trademark and designs.  It should be noted that the act will not apply to copyright infringements,Continue reading “Use Caution When Threatening an IP Action in the U.K.”