Adam Hess

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Hefty Civil Penalties: Another Reason Patent Owners Should Consider Patent Litigation at the ITC

Powerful remedies, particularly General Exclusion Orders, are often cited as a reason why patent owners should consider asserting their patents at the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) under Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 instead of, or in addition to, in U.S. District Court. A recent Federal Circuit decision reaffirms another advantage of … Continue Reading

Once Again, the ITC Finishes the Year with a Flurry of New Complaints

In January 2021, I noted that the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) saw a flurry of new complaints filed in the second half of 2020, particularly in November and December. See here. A similar pattern emerged at the end of 2021, culminating with eight Section 337 complaints filed between December 15 – 31, 2021.… Continue Reading

Judge Leonard P. Stark Will Bring a Wealth of Patent Experience to the Federal Circuit

On Wednesday, November 3, 2021, the White House announced President Biden’s nomination of Judge Leonard P. Stark (U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware) to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. If approved, Judge Stark will succeed Judge Kathleen M. O’Malley, who recently announced that she will retire in March 2022.… Continue Reading

Federal Circuit Allows Service by Alternative Means Under Rule 4(f)(3) in Patent Cases

Serving a district court complaint for patent infringement on a foreign defendant usually requires compliance with the Hague Convention on Service. A recent Federal Circuit decision, however, endorses alternative options under Federal Rule 4(f)(3) that could significantly simplify the process for plaintiffs and make it more difficult for foreign defendants to avoid service and delay … Continue Reading

ITC Section 337: Tips for Avoiding Discretionary Denials at the PTAB

We previously wrote that a co-pending ITC Section 337 investigation virtually guarantees that the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) will exercise its discretionary power to deny institution under 35 U.S.C. §§ 314(a) and 324(a) when considering a petition for inter partes review (IPR) or post-grant review (PGR). See ITC Section 337: Kiss of Death … Continue Reading

ITC Section 337: Kiss of Death for PTAB Proceedings

When considering a petition for post-grant review (PGR) or inter partes review (IPR), the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) has discretion to deny institution under 35 U.S.C. §§ 314(a) and 324(a). The PTAB’s Consolidated Trial Practice Guide provides that, when exercising its discretion, the Board may consider “events in other proceedings related to the … Continue Reading

You’ve Been Served! – ITC Allows Service Through Respondents’ Amazon.com Seller Profile Pages

One advantage of filing a patent infringement complaint at the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) instead of in U.S. District Court is that a Complainant does not need to use the Hague Service Convention process or other treaty to serve the complaint on foreign entities. As explained here, recent ITC decisions expand the methods through … Continue Reading

ITC Initiates Pilot Program to Allow ALJs to Issue Interim Initial Determinations

Earlier today, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) announced a pilot program that will allow Administrative Law Judges (ALJs) to issue interim Initial Determinations (IDs) on fewer than all issues in Section 337 investigations. The announcement can be found here. The pilot program is part of the ITC’s ongoing efforts to expeditiously resolve Section 337 … Continue Reading

Senator Cornyn Considers Expansion of ITC’s Authority under Section 337

Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, 19 U.S.C. § 1337 (“Section 337”), gives the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) broad powers to investigate and address unfair acts and unfair competition in the importation of articles into the United States. Most Section 337 investigations address issues of infringement of statutory intellectual property such as … Continue Reading

Razor Scooter Trips Over Reissue Statute at the ITC

The U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) recently terminated CERTAIN MOTORIZED SELF-BALANCING VEHICLES, Investigation No. 337-TA-1000, brought by Razor USA LLC against alleged infringers of a patent related to electric hoverboards, denying Razor any relief. In doing so, the ITC confirmed that an original patent is surrendered when a Reissue Patent issues, even if a pending … Continue Reading

July Shows Dramatic Increase in ITC Complaints

After a steady, but typical number of Section 337 complaints filed in the first half of 2020, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) saw a dramatic increase in July. Twelve new complaints were filed, representing the second largest number of complaints ever filed in one month. Despite issues surrounding the COVID-19 crisis and uncertain economic … Continue Reading

CAFC Affirms Decision to not Rescind ITC General Exclusion Order Based on New Invalidity Arguments

In Mayborn Group, Ltd. v. ITC, 19-2077 (July 16, 2020), the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) affirmed an U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) decision denying a petition for rescission of a General Exclusion Order (GEO) based on new invalidity arguments presented by a party not involved in the underlying investigation. This decision … Continue Reading

ITC selects WebEx Meeting for Hearings Involving Confidential Business Information

On July 20, 2020, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) announced that it has chosen WebEx Meeting as its secure FedRAMP-certified video teleconferencing solution for Section 337 hearings and conferences involving Confidential Business Information (CBI). The Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) presiding over each investigation has responsibility for determining appropriate hearing procedures using WebEx Meeting, and … Continue Reading

The ITC Expands its Approach to Issuing Cease and Desist Orders

The U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) is an important venue for Intellectual Property owners seeking to enforce their rights against imported infringing products under 19 U.S.C. § 1337 (“Section 337”). IP owners often focus on obtaining Limited Exclusion Orders (or in certain circumstances, General Exclusion Orders) from the ITC. IP owners should not, however, overlook … Continue Reading

COVID-19’s Impact on Section 337 Investigations at the U.S. International Trade Commission (Update)

Like many other Federal Agencies and U.S. District Courts, the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) has been open for business during the COVID-19 crisis, but on a limited basis. On June 22, 2020, the ITC announced plans for re-opening on a broader basis. As the District of Columbia and the surrounding areas begin a phased … Continue Reading

COVID-19’s Impact on Section 337 Investigations at the U.S. International Trade Commission (Part II)

Like many other Federal Agencies and U.S. District Courts, the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) is open for business during the COVID-19 crisis, but on a limited basis. Modifications to the ITC’s business began on March 17, 2020, and the ITC’s COVID-19 Action Plan will remain in place through at least July 10, 2020. Part … Continue Reading

COVID-19’s Impact on Section 337 Investigations at the U.S. International Trade Commission (Part I)

Like many other Federal Agencies and U.S. District Courts, the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) is open for business during the COVID-19 crisis, but on a limited basis. Modifications to the ITC’s business began on March 17, 2020. On May 14, 2020, the ITC’s COVID-19 Action Plan was extended through July 10, 2020. Although limited … Continue Reading

Articles that Infringe Only after Importation can be Excluded by the ITC

The Federal Circuit recently affirmed the International Trade Commission’s (“ITC” or “Commission”) Opinion in Certain Digital Video Receivers and Hardware and Software Components Thereof,[1] holding that the ITC’s authority to exclude products from the United States is not limited to “articles that infringe” at the time of importation, but can include articles that infringe after … Continue Reading

Foreign-based Companies Can Meet the Section 337 Domestic Industry Requirement

The United States International Trade Commission (ITC) can provide a powerful alternative forum for enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights, including U.S. patents.[1] But there are limitations on the actions that can be brought at the ITC. For example, to bring an action for patent infringement at the ITC, a patent owner must demonstrate, inter alia, … Continue Reading
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