Seven Patent Petitions Queued Up for Supreme Court’s New Term

By Tony Dutra, Bloomberg BNA

The U.S. Supreme Court could kick off its new term by deciding to revisit its landmark 2014 ruling on patent eligibility that wiped out protection for many software-based inventions.

Synopsys Inc. filed the petition asking the court to clarify its ruling in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank Int’l and its interpretation by lower courts — one of seven patent-related petitions whose merits the court will discuss Sept. 25 at its first conference of the new term. It will grant or deny review by Oct. 2, when it convenes formally for the new session.

The high court has not appeared eager to revisit Alice. To date, it has rejected more than a dozen requests to take another look at decision. Also, there are already two patent-related cases on the court’s docket for the coming term.

Among the other patent-related issues up for review in the conference are complaints about how the Patent and Trademark Office’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board has implemented patent validity challenges enabled by the America Invents Act (AIA), and about the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit’s practice of affirming PTAB patent cancellations without providing an opinion.