Thursday, January 24, 2013

Inequitable Conduct Pleading Based on “Burying” Prior Art Dismissed

The court granted in part plaintiff's motion to dismiss defendant's inequitable conduct counterclaims to the extent the claims were based on the allegation that plaintiff "buried" the PTO examiner. "[Defendant] alleges that [plaintiff] 'buried' the PTO examiner 'with hundreds of references so as to distract his attention from highly relevant references.'. . . [I]t is likely that a patentee provides copious references to the PTO in order to ensure that he is not subject to inequitable conduct charges for failing to disclose a reference, not as an act of deliberate deception. . . . Because specific intent to deceive is not the only or single most reasonable inference to be drawn from the disclosure of voluminous references to the PTO, [defendant's] pleading of the 'burying' theory fails as a matter of law."

Parker Vision, Inc. v. Qualcomm Incorporated, 3-11-cv-00719 (FLMD January 22, 2013, Order) (Dalton, J.).

No comments: