In a unanimous per curium en banc Opinion on August 13, 2015, the Federal Circuit vacated the prior reported split panel decision in Akamai v. Limelight, Appeal Nos. 2009-1372, 1380, 1416 and 1417, holding that 35 U.S.C. § 271(a) is not limited to principal-agent relationships, contractual arrangements, and joint enterprise, as the vacated panel decision held. The en banc Court held that “an entity is responsible for others’ performance of method steps in two sets of circumstances: (1) where that entity directs or controls others’ performance, and (2) where the actors form a joint enterprise.” With respect to the ‘directs or controls’ standard, the Court held that it continues to consider general principles of vicarious liability, stating: “In the past, we have held that an actor is liable for infringement under Section 271(a) if it acts through an agent (applying traditional agency principles) or contracts with another to perform one or more steps of a claimed method.” However, the Court concluded that, on the facts of this case, liability under Section 271(a) “can also be found when an alleged infringer conditions participation in an activity or receipt of a benefit upon performance of a step or steps of a patented method and establishes the manner or timing of that performance,” citing Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. v. Grokster, Ltd.,545 U.S. 913, 930 (2005) (stating that an actor “infringes vicariously by profiting from direct infringement” if that actor has the right and ability to stop or limit the infringement). In those circumstances, the third party’s actions are attributed to the alleged infringer such that the alleged infringer becomes the single actor chargeable with direct infringement. With respect to “joint enterprise,” the Court held that “where two or more actors form a joint enterprise, all can be charged with the acts of the other, rendering each liable for the steps performed by the other as if each is a single actor.” A “joint enterprise” requires proof of: “(1) an agreement, express or implied, among the members of the group; (2) a common purpose to be carried out by the group; (3) a community of pecuniary interest in that purpose, among the members; and (4) an equal right to a voice in the direction of the enterprise, which gives an equal right of control.” The Court left open the door to “other factual scenarios [that] may arise which warrant attributing others’ performance of method steps to a single actor.”