PAPST LICENSING GMBH & CO. KG V. SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS AMERICA, INC.

PAPST LICENSING GMBH & CO. KG V. SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS AMERICA, INC., Appeal No. 2018‑1777 (Fed. Cir. May 23, 2019).  Before Taranto, Dyk, and Chen.  Appealed from the PTAB.  (Issue Preclusion)

Background:

Papst held three patents directed to interface devices for communication between data devices and host computers. Each of the patents shared an identical Specification and similar claims. Samsung filed separate IPR proceedings for each patent, arguing that the claims were obvious.

At issue in the IPR proceedings was the interpretation of certain key features common to the claims of all three patents. In each proceeding, the PTAB ruled against Papst’s proposed interpretation of these key features. Instead, the PTAB found some of the claims of each patent obvious under its preferred claim interpretation, and thus ruled in favor of Samsung in each case.

Papst separately appealed all three PTAB rulings to the Federal Circuit. However, after the cases were fully briefed and shortly before oral argument, Papst voluntarily dismissed two of the three appeals. In the sole remaining appeal, Papst argued that the PTAB had misconstrued the features of the claims and was thus incorrect in ruling that the claims were obvious.

Issue/Holding:

Did the PTAB err in holding that the claims were obvious. (continue reading)

Summary by:  James Potts

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