On June 19, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) handed down another unanimous opinion in a closely watched patent case. Alice Corporation v. CLS Bank International addresses patent eligibility of computer-implemented inventions. This is the third patent case issued by the Court in as many weeks. (See Mintz Levin’s recent alert on the Limelight and Nautilus decisions.)
In Alice, the Court affirmed the Federal Circuit’s holding that all the patent claims at issue, which include method, system, and media claims, are invalid under 35 U.S.C. §101. In reaching its decision, the Court applied a two-step framework: first, determining whether the claims at issue are directed to one of the patent-ineligible categories (laws of nature, natural phenomena, or abstract ideas); and second, if so, determining whether the elements of each claim contain an “inventive concept” sufficient to transform the unpatentable category into a patent-eligible application.
Our attorneys present a comprehensive discussion of the decision and its impact on you in this client alert.