On August 19, 2016, the International Trade Commission (“the Commission”) issued a notice in Certain Resealable Packages with Slider Devices (Inv. No. 337-TA-962). In the notice, the Commission determined that no violation of Section 337 has occurred in this matter and terminated the investigation.

By way of background, this investigation is based on a June 17, 2015 complaint filed by Reynolds Presto Products Inc. (“Reynolds Presto”) alleging violation of Section 337 in the importation into the U.S. and sale of certain resealable packages with slider devices that infringe one or more claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,427,421 (the ‘421 patent); 6,524,002 (the ‘002 patent); and 7,311,443 (the ‘443 patent). See our June 17, 2015 and July 17, 2015 posts for more details on the complaint.

On June 20, 2016, ALJ Theodore R. Essex issued his Initial Determination (“ID”) finding no violation of Section 337. In the ID, the ALJ found, inter alia, that none of the Respondents’ accused products infringe any of the asserted patents. On July 6, 2016, Reynolds Presto and the Respondents each filed a petition for review of the ID. On July 14, 2016, Reynolds Presto, the Respondents, and the Commission Investigative Staff each filed a response to the opposing petition.

According to the August 19, 2016 notice, after examining the record of the investigation, including the ID, the parties’ petitions, and the responses thereto, the Commission determined to review the ID in part. Specifically, the Commission determined to review (i) the ID’s finding of no invalidity of claim 1 of the ‘443 patent under 35 U.S.C. § 102(b); and (ii) the ID’s analysis regarding infringement of the ‘421 patent. The Commission determined not to review the remainder of the ID.

On review with respect to issue (i), the Commission determined to take no position on the ID’s finding of no invalidity of claim 1 of the ‘443 patent under § 102(b). On review with respect to issue (ii), the Commission modified-in-part the final ID to include additional language supporting the ID’s finding of no infringement under the doctrine of equivalents with respect to claim 39 of the ‘421 patent.

Accordingly, the Commission affirmed the ID’s finding of no violation of Section 337 and terminated the investigation.