Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Prior Judgment of Indefiniteness Triggers Collateral Estoppel Despite PTO’s Finding of No Invalidity

The court granted defendant's motion for judgment on the pleadings based on collateral estoppel following another court and the PTO's determinations that the patent-in-suit was invalid even though the PTO made other findings of no invalidity. "[T]he Court disagrees with Plaintiff’s contention that the Texas court’s judgment conflicts with two separate adjudications of patent validity before the [PTO]. . . . A finding by the PTO that the Patent is not obvious or anticipated by the prior art is not in conflict with a judgment that the Patent is nonetheless invalid for indefiniteness. No conflict exists which would prevent the application of collateral estoppel here. . . . Indeed, even if there were a truly inconsistent finding of validity, case law indicates this would not necessarily be sufficient to forego application of the doctrine."

JuxtaComm-Texas Software, LLC v. Lanier Parking Systems of Florida, Inc. et al, 6-11-cv-00514 (FLMD June 10, 2013, Order) (Baker, M.J.).

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