CUOZZO SPEED TECHS., LLC V. LEE, U.S., NO. 15-446, 6/20/16  

The U.S. Supreme Court held the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s standard of using the broadest reasonable interpretation (“BRI”) of patent claims in Inter Partes Reviewproceedings is proper.  Why is this important?  Because Inter Partes Review proceedings have been overwhelmingly used to try to invalidate patents under the BRI standard.  In comparison, U.S. district courts interpret patent claims using an “ordinary meaning” standard, along with different burdens of proof, procedures and processes.

The Supreme Court held Congress squarely put it within the power of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to determine the patent claim interpretation standard to be used in an Inter Partes Review proceeding.  The Court further noted the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has used the BRI standard for more than 100 years and that standard protected the public from patent claims that are too broad thereby tying up too much knowledge and discouraging innovation.

Click here to get the U.S. Supreme Court's full decision.