The doctrine of assignor estoppel is still valid. However, the doctrine has limits on when it is applicable.
Case Law Briefs
The territoriality doctrine does not apply to aspects of the Lanham Act in § 14(3) that are not concerned with the protection of trademark rights. Under § 14(3) of the Lanham Act, a cancellation challenge may be filed “by any person who believes that he is or will be damaged…by the registration of a mark.” Such causes of action “extend only to plaintiffs whose interest fall within the zone of interests protected by the law invoked,” which “requires an allegation of injury to a commercial interest in reputation or sales.” If a plaintiff does not sell a marked product in a particular country, then a third-party’s re-sale of that product in that particular country does not establish damage from lost sales. Further, reputational injury generally occurs when “deception of consumers causes them to withhold trade from the plaintiff.” Thus, if there are no lost sales and no evidence that a community is aware of the plaintiff’s marks, then there is no reputational injury.
Stephen Thaler v. Katherine K. Vidal, Under Secretary of Commerce for IP Director of the USPTO, USPTO
When a statute unambiguously and directly answers the question, analysis does not stray beyond the plain text. Congress has determined that only a natural person can be an inventor, therefore, AI cannot be. Accordingly, the plain meaning of “inventor” in the Patent Act is limited to natural persons.
A reference that contains an obvious typographical error that would have been apparent to a person of ordinary skill in the art such that the person would disregard or correct the error does not disclose the subject matter contained in that error.
It is not sufficient to rely exclusively on evidence of general skepticism about the field of the invention to find a lack of motivation to combine.
A promise to buy goods from a supplier separate from a patented invention can qualify as the requisite consideration for a valid contract to satisfy the “on-sale” condition, and pre- and post-installation testing clauses in an agreement may not be sufficient to qualify for the experimental use doctrine unless they evidence that the primary purpose of the sale was to conduct experimentation.
The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) held that “reckless disregard” for the truth or falsity of Declaration(s) submitted during the course of trademark application process is sufficient for a finding of fraud on the USPTO.