Justia U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion SummariesArticles Posted in Patents
Online Resources Corp. v. Joao Bock Transaction Sys.
This appeal stems from a settlement agreement involving a patent infringement dispute between ACI Worldwide and JBTS. On appeal, ACI Worldwide challenged the district court's denial of its motion for partial summary judgment and grant of partial summary judgment to JBTS. The court concluded that even if case 231, standing alone, no longer arose under U.S. patent law after the district court deemed ACI Worldwide’s non-infringement and invalidity claims merged into case 245, the Federal Circuit still has exclusive appellate jurisdiction of this entire consolidated case composed in large part of federal patent claims. Although the court could transfer this case to the Federal Circuit, the court concluded that transfer is unnecessary because an appeal raising the same issues is already pending in the Federal Circuit. Accordingly, the court dismissed the case without prejudice for lack of appellate jurisdiction. View "Online Resources Corp. v. Joao Bock Transaction Sys." on Justia Law
Posted in: Patents
U.S. Water Servs., Inc. v. ChemTreat, Inc.
In April 2011, while its patent application was pending with the USPTO, U.S. Water Services, which “sell[s] water treatment and purification equipment, materials, and services,” especially “to ethanol process technologies,” sued its competitor, ChemTreat, for misappropriation of trade secrets. In October 2011, the USPTO issued the 244 patent covering a method to reduce the formation of insoluble scale deposits during the production of ethanol using enzyme, phytase, in its “pHytOUT® system.”Three days before U.S. Water and ChemTreat settled the misappropriation claim, ChemTreat filed counterclaims requesting declaratory judgments of noninfringement and invalidity of the 244 patent. The suit was filed before the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, 125 Stat. 284, took effect, so the counterclaims independently did not establish appellate jurisdiction for the Federal Circuit. The district court granted ChemTreat summary judgment as to the noninfringement counterclaim and dismissed the invalidity counterclaim. The Eighth Circuit affirmed. Evaluating the “totality of [the] circumstances,” the district court did not err in finding the misappropriation action, together with U.S. Water’s statements to its customers and supplier, produced an objective, “reasonable apprehension of suit,” and did not err in concluding declaratory judgment subject matter jurisdiction existed. The decision did not constitute an advisory opinion. View "U.S. Water Servs., Inc. v. ChemTreat, Inc." on Justia Law
Yazdianpour v. Safeblood Techs., Inc.
Licensees entered into a licensing agreement with Safeblood Tech for the exclusive rights to market patented technology overseas. After learning that they could not register the patents in other countries, Licensees sued Safeblood for breach of contract and sued Safeblood, its officers, and patent inventor for fraud, constructive fraud, and violations of the Arkansas Deceptive Trade Practices Act (ADTPA), Ark. Code 4-88-101 to -115. The district court dismissed the fraud claims at summary judgment. The remaining claims proceeded to trial and a jury found for Licensees, awarding them $786,000 in contract damages and no damages for violations of the ADTPA. The district court awarded Licensees $144,150.40 in prejudgment interest. The Eighth Circuit reversed as to the common-law fraud claim and the award of prejudgment interest, but otherwise affirmed. Licensees produced sufficient evidence that the inventor made a false statement of fact; the district court did not abuse its discretion when it gave the jury a diminution-in-product-value instruction; and Licensees waived their inconsistent-verdict argument. View "Yazdianpour v. Safeblood Techs., Inc." on Justia Law