The Facts

Keeping You Trucking Along

Keeping You Trucking Along

Buying a car or truck is often a stressful experience, involving aggressive salespersons, negotiating trade-in values, obtaining financing, and…patent infringement?

That’s right.  In 2013, the Credit Acceptance Corporation began asserting U.S. Patent No. 6,950,807 (the “’807 patent”) against U.S. dealers and lenders, alleging that anyone using a computer to help finance a car (or any product for that matter) infringed its patent.  Most of us who have purchased a car in the last 20 years have seen dealers use computers in the process of financing a car.  

Fortunately, the Patent Office has a group of experts—called The Patent Trial and Appeal Board, or PTAB—which was able to take a second look at the ’807 patent using a post-grant review process (whereby they can consider whether a patent was granted in error). They concluded that the ’807 patent covered a well-known business practice of financing a car and merely performing those steps on a computer did not merit a patent. The appeals court affirmed the PTAB’s decision.

So thanks to the PTAB, you don’t have to worry about patent infringement when buying your next car. (Sorry, they can’t do anything about the loan, or that pesky salesperson!)

Myth

The PTAB is a “death squad” eager to cancel patent claims in IPRs.

Fact

Only 9% of all filed IPRs resulted in any patent claim being invalidated.

As of February 15, 2019, only 5,954 patents of an estimated 3 million patents in force had been challenged at the PTAB -- less than 0.2%.

Even fewer patents have been cancelled by the PTAB. As of Dec. 31, 2018, only 1,303 patents or about 0.04%—of active patents have been invalidated in a PTAB trial.

News & Resources

View Post

Protego Press

A Poison Pill for Lower Drug Prices

View Post

United Patents

Patent Used to Shake Down Dozens of American Retailers Was Invalid; How Many Paid Before IPR Ruling?

Examples of Patents Invalidated By PTAB

Automotive Windshield Wiper Blade

Automotive Windshield Wiper Blade

U.S. Patent Number
7,484,264

Bosch sued Costco on a wiper blade patent. Costco asked the PTAB to look at the validity of the patent. The PTAB canceled the patent and the lawsuit was resolved.

Proceeding
IR2016-00040
Petitioner

Costco Wholesale Corp.

Patent Owner

Robert Bosch LLC

Comments

6 total claims
Claims 1-3 cancelled.

Also Default Judgement against Ningbo Xinhai Aiduo Automobile Wiper Blade Manuf. Co.
(Dist. Nev. 2:10-cv-1927) and (Zhejiang 2:10-cv-1931)

Seeding Treatments

Seeding Treatments

U.S. Patent Number
6,209,259

Encap, LLC sued Scotts Company LLC for patent infringement of patent directed to seeding treatments. Scott’s asked the PTAB to review the validity of the asserted claims and they determined that the asserted claims were not patentable. The litigation was narrowed and subsequently resolved.

Proceeding
IPR2013-00110
Petitioner

Scotts Company LLC

Patent Owner

Encap, LLC

Comments

Claims 1-5, 7-11, 13 and 14 cancelled

1-11-cv-00685 (WIED Green Bay)

Illuminated Wind Indicator

Illuminated Wind Indicator

U.S. Patent Number
8,089,370

Coleman Cable LLC was sued on a patent that claimed to be the first illuminated wind indicator and they asked the PTAB to give the validity of the patent a second look and nearly all the issued claims were canceled.

Proceeding
IPR2014-00935
Petitioner

Coleman Cable LLC et al.

Patent Owner

Simon Nicholas Richmond

Comments

Claims 1–7, 9, 10, 14, 17–20, 23, 28, 43, 45 and 48–50 canceled