The Federal Circuit reversed the Commission’s determination of violation under section 337 and vacated the corresponding exclusion orders and cease-and-desist orders today in its opinion Lucky Litter LLC v. ITC. As Inv. No. 337-TA-625, Certain Self-Cleaning Litter Boxes And Components Thereof, the Commission had previously ruled in favor of complainants Applica Consumer Products, Inc. and Waters Research Company, that respondents Lucky Litter LLC and OurPet’s Company’s self-cleaning letter boxes violated section 337.

At issue in the case is U.S. Patent No. RE 36,847 (‘847 patent). The Commission held that the respondent’s product infringed claim 33 of the ‘847 patent. The Federal Circuit held that the Commission erred in construing claim 33 to include a “cat exit,” which was contrary to the plain meaning of the claim. The court further held that when properly construed without this limitation, Claim 33 would have been obvious. Intervenor Applica proffered additional grounds to uphold the exclusion order, which the court rejected as without merit.