Tag: Written Description


Are terms of “degree” indefinite claim language under 35 U.S.C. 112?

Written by Mark Terry Terms of degree – such as “easily,” “readily,” and “aesthetically pleasing” – can be subjective and therefore problematic when used as claim language. But the recent Federal Circuit decision of Hearing Components, Inc. v. Shure Inc., 600 F. 3d 1357 (Fed. Cir. 2010) provides some guidelines on how to properly use terms of degree in claim language without worrying about a 35 U.S.C. §112 indefiniteness rejection. As a Florida Patent Attorney, I write claims almost every day, so this case is topical for me. Under 35 U.S.C. § 112, second paragraph, the “specification shall conclude with one or

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Board of Patent Appeals Rules on “Intended Use” Argument in 102 Rejection

Written by Mark Terry On Friday, the Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (BPAI) rejected the well-known “intended use” argument in favor of a Patent Examiner’s 35 U.S.C. 102 anticipation rejection. As a Miami Patent Lawyer, I found the Ex parte Crabtree decision interesting because it confirmed my own abandonment of the “intended use” argument in the course of patent prosecution. The Ex parte Crabtree decision involved a claim for a mattress spring that performed a specific task. Specifically, the mattress spring “deflects debris.” The Appellant found a prior art reference that had the same structure as Appellant’s claim, but did not disclose a

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Common Patent Prosecution Mishap: Failing to Address a 35 U.S.C. 112 Rejection – Florida Patent Lawyer Blog

Written by: Mark Terry Yesterday’s Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (BPAI) decision in Ex Parte Lin reveals a common patent prosecution error -especially before the BPAI – failing to properly address a rejection. The case of Ex Parte Lin involved a photolithography invention. The Examiner rejected the claims under the 1st paragraph of 35 U.S.C. § 112 for failing to comply with the enablement requirement. According to the Examiner, the Specification disclosure would not enable a person with ordinary skill in this art (POSITA) to make or use, without undue experimentation, a “photomask with wavelength-reducing material throughout the full scope of the claimed

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Reciting Ranges in Chemical Patent Applications and the 112 Rejection

Written by: Mark Terry What happens when you only disclose a larger range of values in the specification and later amend the claims to recite a smaller range of values encompassed by the larger range? Do you run into a 112 written description problem? That was the issue in today’s Ex Parte Moraes Barros (BPAI 2010-006399) decision at the Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (BPAI) where a Patent Examiner was reversed. As a Florida Patent Attorney, I stay updated on the latest decisions of the BPAI, so as to provide my clients with the best representation on appeal. In the Moraes Barros case, the

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Non-Obviousness Arguments That Don’t Work at the Board of Patent Appeals – Florida Patent Lawyer Blog

Written by: Mark Terry Last week’s Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (BPAI) decision of Ex Parte Lim , which affirmed a Patent Examiner’s 35 U.S.C. 103 obviousness rejection, teaches an important lesson – obviousness rejections must address both references – not just one. As a Miami Patent Attorney that reads BPAI decisions frequently, I’m surprised that any practitioners even try this argument anymore. The case of Ex Parte Lim involved a mobile communications network, such as those used by cell phone providers. The Examiner issued a 35 U.S.C. 103 obviousness rejection based on two references – Lipsanen and Siren. The Appellant argued that Lipsanen did

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A Hidden Structural Limitation in Apparatus Claims – Florida Patent Lawyer Blog

Written by Mark Terry  Today’s Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (BPAI) decision of Ex parte Nakamura et al , which reversed a Patent Examiner’s 35 U.S.C. 103 obviousness rejection, was remarkable because it illustrated a method for reversing an obviousness rejection. As a Miami Patent Lawyer with a large patent docket, the Ex parte Nakamura was educational because it showed me where I might find a hidden structural limitation in an apparatus claim. Ex parte Nakamura involved a box-like positioning apparatus that included various moving parts. The claim element at issue stated that the amount or distance a particular moving member can be moved was limited

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Amending Patent Claims After Allowance Under 37 CFR §1.312 – Florida Patent Lawyer Blog

Written by Mark Terry    As a Miami Patent Attorney with an active patent prosecution docket, I feel as if I’ve encountered every possible patent prosecution situation out there. But I was recently faced with a situation I had not previously encountered. At issue was my client’s patent application for project management software. The Examiner at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office called me to ask if I would agree to an Examiner’s Amendment, to which I agreed. Subsequently, the Examiner issues an Examiner’s Amendment and a Notice of Allowance all at once. But after reviewing the Examiner’s Amendment, I noticed there were a

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