Jenner & Block

Supreme Court Upholds, and Changes, IPR Administrative Patent Challenges in Oil States and SAS

On April 24, 2018, the Supreme Court issued decisions in Oil States Services, LLC v. Greene’s Energy Group, LLC, and SAS Institute Inc. v. Iancu.  In Oil States, the Court held that inter partes review (“IPR”), an administrative process by which the Patent and Trademark Office (“PTO”) reviews the validity of existing patents, does not violate Article III or the Seventh Amendment.  This decision is consistent with the amicus brief filed by Jenner & Block for the PTAB Bar Association, which emphasized that IPR provides an important corrective measure to erroneous issuance of patents.  However, while the Supreme Court’s Oil States decision leaves IPR intact, its decision in SAS Institute will change the IPR process by requiring the PTO to address all claims in an IPR petition it institutes, rather than picking and choosing.