Our weekly SoCal IP Institute meeting on Monday, October 14, 2013 will be a discussion led by Guy Cumberbatch of our Santa Barbara Office regarding the effects of species restrictions on patent claim scope, a series of TTAB decisions testing whether you can spot likelihood of confusion, and an examiner’s response to a patent claiming godly powers. A brief synopsis of the patent case appears below.

Plantronics, Inc. v. Aliph, Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2013) (available here). Plantronics sued Aliph for infringement of U.S. Patent No. 5,712,453, entitled “Concha Headset Stabilizer.  The district court granted Defendant’s motion on claim construction, partly based on a species election during prosecution of Plantronics patent.  The Federal Circuit reversed on that issue because the election did not clearly disavow certain structures.

We will also discuss four recent Section 2(d) likelihood of confusion cases in front of the TTAB.  Can you predict the outcome just by looking at the marks and the identified goods/services, without more? Two of the four refusals were reversed–which are they?

Finally, we will briefly discuss an examiner’s response to a patent application claiming “godly powers.”

All are invited to join us in our discussion during the SoCal IP Institute meeting on Monday, October 14, 2013 at Noon in our Westlake Village office. This activity is approved for 1 hour of MCLE credit. If you will be joining us, please RSVP to Noelle Smith by 9 am Monday morning.