We reported last week on the discovery limitations under United States Patent and Trademark Office (“PTO”) guidelines as they pertain to inter partes review (“IPR”) proceedings. On Wednesday, in Abbott Labs. v. Cordis Corp., the Federal Circuit ruled that discovery is not allowed in inter partes re-examinations. The case stemmed from Abbott’s motion to quash two subpoenas duces tecum issued by Cordis which sought documents for use in a pending IPR re-examination. Id. at 2. In the underlying action, Cordis sued Abbott in the District Court for the District of New Jersey for infringement of two of its patents directed to drug-eluting stents. Id. at 3. The PTO agreed to inter partes re-examination of the patents and by office action, the examiners found both patents obvious. Id. at 3-4.
Tagged: IPR Proceedings
Companies accused of patent infringement have a number of basic alternatives to contemplate: settle the matter; defend the suit; or consider resort to a post grant patent proceeding at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). With an eye towards cost, risk and accurate resolution, inter partes review (IPR) proceedings are an attractive alternative to settling or defending.