Federal Circuit Affirms District Court Decision Striking Expert Report And Granting Summary Judgment Of Non-Infringement
On November 30, 2022, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) affirmed a decision by the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington striking portions of a plaintiff’s expert report and granting summary judgment of non-infringement to defendant. Treehouse Avatar LLC v. Valve Corp., No. 21-1171 (Fed. Cir. Nov. 30, 2022). The CAFC found that the district court did not abuse its discretion in its decision to strike portions of the report, nor did it err in its finding that plaintiff failed to rebut defendant’s evidence of non-infringement.
Federal Circuit Finds District Court’s Element-By-Element Infringement Pleading Standard Overly Demanding
On July 13, 2021, the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“CAFC”) affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded appellant Bot M8 LLC’s (“Bot M8”) appeal of several underlying orders related to the dismissal of its patent infringement action against Sony Corporation of America (“Sony”). Bot M8 LLC v. Sony Corporation of America, ___ F.3d ___ (Fed. Cir. July 13, 2021). The CAFC clarified that while a plaintiff need not plead infringement on an element-by-element basis, reciting claim elements and merely concluding that the accused products have those elements is insufficient.
Plaintiff’s Refusal To Articulate A Hypothetical Claim Warrants Summary Judgment Of Noninfringement Under The Doctrine Of Equivalents
On January 28, 2021, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California (NDCA) issued an order granting summary judgment of noninfringement under the doctrine of equivalents. Fluidigm Corp. v. IONpath, Inc., Case No. 3:19-cv-05639-WHA, Dkt. No. 210 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 28, 2021). The NDCA found that the patentee “abdicated” its burden under the doctrine of equivalents by refusing to engage in the hypothetical claim analysis required under defendant’s ensnarement defense.