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Articles

Fed. Circ. Can Handle Crush Of PTAB Appeals

March 9, 2016

Articles

Fed. Circ. Can Handle Crush Of PTAB Appeals

March 9, 2016

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Principal John Dragseth was quoted in the Law360 article “Fed. Circ. Can Handle Crush Of PTAB Appeals” to discuss how the number of appeals of institution decisions, if allowed, could actually be “somewhat small” with the patent office potentially placing procedural limits on AIA reviews that lower the instances of those appeals.

If the Federal Circuit does face a flood of future appeals, because of Cuozzo or just the general increase out of the PTAB, Dragseth believes that could be stemmed by the USPTO coming up with solutions to many of the issues involving AIA reviews, such as institution decisions on redundant claims. Of the Federal Circuit’s practice of combining cases involving either the same patent or cases involving different patents but the same litigants, Dragseth said the court has also been flexible enough in such situations to allow the parties extra time during oral arguments, but he added that the practice may not be tenable.“The legal system,” Dragseth said, “is an amazing system that balances itself.”

“I don’t know if they’ve reached the perfect solution yet,” Dragseth said. “Having a clerk unilaterally merge appeals may not be the best approach.”

The third tool the Federal Circuit could employ, though it has not yet done so, is an additional panel during open slots in its schedule to hear more cases, Wright said.

For his part, Dragseth believes the Federal Circuit’s current caseload is adequate, saying the best test to determine whether the Federal Circuit docket is too full is by looking at the quality of the opinions the appellate court issues.

“I think their current caseload is fair,” Dragseth said. “I don’t think their opinions are sloppy, and there have been no complete miscarriages of justice.”

To read the full article from Law360, please click here.

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