Saturday, September 28, 2013

US Supreme Court Certiorari - Octane Fitness v. Icon Health and Fitness - Exceptional Cases Under 35 USC 285 and Attorney Fees

On September 5, Mary Dwyer of the SCOTUS Blog stated the petition of the day relates to the Federal Circuit's nonprecedential decision in Octane Fitness v. Icon Health and Fitness. If the Supreme Court takes the case, it may increase the likelihood that a losing patent assertion entity case is held exceptional under 35 USC 285 resulting in an attorney fee award.

The issue is framed: Whether the Federal Circuit’s promulgation of a rigid and exclusive two-part test for determining whether a case is “exceptional” under 35 U.S.C. § 285 improperly appropriates a district court’s discretionary authority to award attorney fees to prevailing accused infringers in contravention of statutory intent and this Court’s precedent, thereby raising the standard for accused infringers (but not patentees) to recoup fees and encouraging patent plaintiffs to bring spurious patent cases to cause competitive harm or coerce unwarranted settlements from defendants.

See the papers, orders, and proceedings at SCOTUS blog page.

Updated October 1, 2013: Petition Granted.

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