Federal Circuit Affirms Cybor’s De Novo Appellate Claim Construction in en banc Decision
In a 6-4 en banc decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for The Federal Circuit ruled that it will continue to review District Court claim constructions de novo. The Court stated that since claim construction is a legal statement of the scope of the patent right, it turns on the content of the patent documents rather than questions of witness credibility. While the court may consider expert testimony to explain technical subject matter, this evidence does not does not convert patent claim construction into a question of fact subject to deferential review. SSJR filed an amicus brief on behalf of the Connecticut Intellectual Property Law Association (“CIPLA”) arguing in favor of a more deferential review of claim construction. SSJR’s brief was cited twice in Judge O’Malley’s dissent at pages 26-27 and page 36.