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Assignment of Intent-to-use Trademark Applications

The Trademark Act Section 10(a)(1) clearly states that an intent-to-use application cannot be assigned “except for an assignment to a successor to the business of the applicant, or portion thereof, to which the mark pertains, if that business is ongoing and existing.” In the recent Trademark Trial and Appeal Board case, Cent. Garden & Pet Co. v. Doskocil Mfg. Co., No. 91188816 (TTAB August 16, 2013), All-Glass Aquarium Co., a




The Federal Circuit Rules on Apple v. ITC

On August 7, 2013, the Federal Circuit affirmed-in-part the lower court’s decision in Apple Inc. v. ITC (2012-1338) finding no Section 337 violation in Certain Mobile Devices, and Related Software Thereof (Inv. No. 337-TA-750). The Federal Circuit ruled that Apple’s U.S. Patent No. 7,663,607, which related to a touch panel with a transparent capacitive sensing medium that can detect multiple touches at once, was invalid for anticipation and obviousness, and




FIRREA and Bank Fraud

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, in U.S. ex rel. O’Donnell v. Bank of America Corp et al., No. 12-01422 (S.D.N.Y. 2013), has endorsed a broad interpretation of a savings-and-loan era law that the Justice Department is trying to use in cases against Wall Street banks. This ruling came as part of a federal case against Bank of America over allegations that it sold toxic




The Lanham Act and Jim Brown

On July 31, 2013, the Ninth Circuit affirmed dismissal of the Lanham Act claims brought by Jim Brown, a former NFL star, against video game developer Electronic Arts, Inc. (EA). The court concluded that the Rogers balancing test was the appropriate standard to evaluate defendant EA’s use of Brown’s likeness in video games, and since the use of his likeness was artistically relevant to games, it is protected by the




M&A and Government Immunity

The Supreme Court’s decision in FTC v. Phoebe Putney Health System Inc., 133 S. Ct. 1003 (2013) put a limitation on the state immunity under which local governments across the country have relied upon for decades to shield their activities from federal antitrust scrutiny. This decision will open the door to challenging numerous government transactions including the transactions consummated before the Phoebe Putney decision. Until Phoebe Putney, the Supreme Court




ANDA Litigation and Reverse Payments

In Federal Trade Commission v. Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc., No. 133 S. Ct. 787 (2012), the Supreme Court held that reverse payments in pharmaceuticals patent settlement are not categorically immune from the antitrust laws even if such payments fall within the scope of the patent. Often, reverse payments are made by a pioneer drug manufacturer to a generic drug manufacturer in settlement of a patent challenge. In exchange for the payment, the generic




Copyright Violation and the Constitutionality of Excessive Damages – Music Downloaders Beware!

The Eight Circuit affirmed the constitutionality of statutory damages for copyright infringement against the challenge that it is disproportionately excessive in Capitol Records, Inc. v. Thomas-Rasset, 692 F.3d 899 (8th Cir. 2012). In 2011, record companies sued a woman for making copyrighted music available to others for free download by using a file-sharing service.  First the jury awarded the record companies $222,000 in damage.  Months after the verdict, however, the district court granted a new




Myriad and Patenting of the Human Gene

The June 2013 Supreme Court decision in Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, 569 U.S. 12-398 (2013) which considered whether portions of human genes may be patented, fueled an extraordinary amount of heated discussion for an intellectual property case. The patents at issue in Myriad concern mutated genes associated with increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer. Health care advocates worried that a ruling in favor of patentability would make




Diversity

Enhancing Our Client Solutions At our firm we view diversity not as another corporate initiative, but as a vital component of how we conduct our business, and how our members live and work together. The diversity of our members, in race, culture, religion and belief systems fosters empathy and acceptance, creativity and innovation. We serve a global clientele before multinational tribunals and intellectual property offices.




Do Business Method Patents Hurt or Help?

Do Business Method Patents Hurt or Help? A Financial Industry Perspective, 14 VA. J.L. & TECH. 147 (2009). Abstract The State Street Bank decision of 1998 affirmed U.S. business method patents. Along with the subsequent downpour of patent filings came a shower of commentary from the legal and business communities alike. The literature has generally been thoughtful and well-reasoned, or at least well-meaning. But as practitioners in the fields, we