Inside the U.S. Supreme Court’s Patent Fascination

In August of 2012, I had the opportunity to sit down on the record with Seth Waxman of WilmerHale. Waxman is an accomplished attorney by any measure.  Perhaps most notably, he served as Solicitor General of the United States, which is the #3 position at the Department of Justice, during the second Clinton Administration. The Solicitor General, as most know, is responsible for advocating the U.S. government’s position before the United States Supreme Court.

While many appointments within the government are political in nature, the Solicitor General’s office has been occupied by some of the best and brightest minds the legal profession has to offer. Waxman is no exception.  Indeed, he is extraordinarily well regarded within the legal community, and specifically within the patent community. To those who are familiar with the Supreme Court and patents, Waxman is the ultimate rockstar.  He is the attorney who successfully prevailed in i4i v. Microsoft, the case where Microsoft and legions of amici wanted to reduce or eliminate the presumption of validity for a patent, lowering the standard required to find patent claims invalid.


Best of the 6th Annual Patent Law Institute

We here at the Practising Law Institute are pretty excited at how this past week’s 6th Annual Patent Law Institute exceeded expectations in the caliber and frankness of the featured panelists. The panels ranged from patent prosecution and litigation, to strategic and transactional discussions, to the ultimate in panels: the judges’ panel where federal & district court judges discussed the most relevant issues facing their courts along with some of the top patent attorneys in the country. If you missed this amazing institute, you’re not out of luck! The Patent Law Institute will have a second run in San Francisco, California from March 19-20, 2012, and registration is still open. Until then, here is a list of highlights, a best of the best if you will, from select panels throughout the Patent Law Institute. (more…)

Patent Law Institute Live Blog: Dialogue Between the Bench and Bar

Welcome to the Patent Law Institute‘s last panel of the day. The panel is entitled, “Dialogue Between the Bench and Bar”, and has a great lineup including the Chief Judge of the Federal Circuit and leading members of the patent appellate bar who discuss hot patent topics affecting patent practice. The panel includes Donald R. Dunner, Hon. Randall R. Rader, Seth P. Waxman, Dean John M. Whealan, and Hon. William G. Young. Here are the highlights:

On the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit:

Hon. Rader, Chief Judge, United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit:

The term “specialized” court was an attack on the court in the creation era, but Congress specifically negated that by providing the court a broad jurisdiction. The culture of commercial litigation requires judges to seek the kind of resolution that allows the American CEO to quickly respond to market pressures. There’s a requirementof bright line rules in this culture of the court, but this does not facilitate the market. Thus, the Court of Appeals has a great strength in not being bound to bright line rules like other courts. (more…)