Inter partes review
In the span of one month, our attorneys achieved four inter partes review (IPR) victories before the US Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) on behalf of clients Nexans Inc. and Berk-Tek, companies in the high-speed telecommunications cable industry.
Our attorneys filed four separate IPRs challenging the validity of four patents for network cables held by Belden Inc., all of which were being asserted against Nexans and Berk-Tek in a parallel District Court proceeding in Delaware.
On March 18, 2014, the PTAB entered a final written decision invalidating claims of U.S. Pat. No. 6,074,503. The decision invalidated the original ‘503 patent claims, leaving only two dependent claims that were added in 2010 in a reexamination proceeding. Then, on April 28, 2014, the PTAB declared that two of the three remaining patents, U.S. Pat. Nos. 7,977,575 and 7,663,061 were completely invalid. The fourh patent and final patent, U.S. Patent No. 7,135,641, was invalidated with the exception of two claims that are not being asserted against Nexans and Berk-Tek in the District Court proceeding.
“More than 500 inter partes reviews were filed in the first year of AIA, with the first final ruling being issued on November 13, 2013,” said Intellectual Property Partner James Blank. “As such, precedent is still very new—but the fact that we were able to demonstrate that the patents were invalid under the new guidelines and the fact that all reviews were decided within a span of just over a month clearly indicates that one of the key intents of inter partes reviews when it was first enacted, which was to speed up the process, is working and working effectively.”