2018 Patent Filings: A Look at Selected Districts (update)

I try not to update posts this quickly, but the above new chart from Darryl Towell at Docket Navigator this morning was too good to pass up. Yesterday I provided the 2018 patent filings for Delaware, EDTX, NDCA and CDCA by month as shown below, with the lagniappe of a svelte line showing Delaware’s non-ANDA filings as well. It was a chart only a mother could love. This morning DN sent over a revised chart by quarter, and a couple of trends I didn’t focus on yesterday are now apparent.

Habemus DCO – Waco Edition

I enjoyed participating in Judge Alan Albright’s first patent scheduling conference last week, although candidly I’d have enjoyed it more if it’d been in person in Waco where I could have snagged some lemon-lavender donut holes from Magnolia Table and checked in on Grayson James on the way home. But I was able to order a mug with Judge Albright’s picture above on it through the Waco paper to commemorate the hearing, so there’s that.

Did I mention we just got orders?

Law school tourism

Good to have a class of law students in town last week to visit the local federal courthouse to see how a patent case works. As with most patent cases, it went away before they got here, but the students still got to see Judge Gilstrap conducting a civil rights trial in a case against Baker Tank Company. (Which was actually probably more exciting).

The students are in Prof. David Taylor’s Patent Law and Institutional Choice class at SMU Dedman School of Law in Dallas. Two weeks ago the group went to Washington D.C. to visit the Supreme Court, Federal Circuit, PTO and U.S. Capitol. Next on their itinerary was Marshall to visit Chief U.S. District Judge Rodney Gilstrap’s courtroom to see where many of the country’s high profile intellectual property disputes have taken place. Marshall News Messenger reporter Robin Richardson interviewed the students.

“For us, it’s fantastic,” said student Zack Faircloth. “We get a chance to (see) Judge Gilstrap. We read his cases all the time, so for us we get to see the real thing, it’s just an incredible experience for us, as law students.”

Hmm. I’ll just point out now that Robin’s full article is available here – https://www.marshallnewsmessenger.com/news/smu-law-students-witness-marshall-s-federal-court-in-action/article_b55c69a8-2355-11e9-9d0a-67e3002a9207.html

When I was in law school in the last century, our field trip was to Parkland Hospital in Dallas, including half an hour in the room where the medical examiner does autopsies. And no, it’s nothing like Quincy, M.E. (that was long before CSI).

It’s a large room with maybe half a dozen bodies in various states of dissection laying around, the condition of each of which was explained to us by a desperately sleep-deprived ME who looked nothing like Jack Klugman overseeing the activity. Incongruously, there was a Bartles & Jaymes life size cutout and a Budweiser man cave swimsuit model poster on the walls, which gave a weirdly festive look to the room. The idea was to give us a better idea what actually went on at postmortems so we would be better able to read the reports and advise our future clients. And it worked – in that half hour we learned about autopsy report preparation, infant and senior citizen mortality, normal postmortem discoloration, organ donation procedures and much more. And only a couple of us threw up.

No offense to civil rights cases, but I think my field trip was way more interesting.

Judge Mary Lou Robinson Passes

U.S. District Judge Judge Mary Lou Robinson of the Northern District of Texas passed away on Saturday. She was 92. In September 2018, Judge Robinson became the first woman within a five-state area to have a federal courthouse named for her with the renaming of the J. Marvin Jones Federal Building and Mary Lou Robinson United States Courthouse in Amarillo. You can read more about this trailblazing lawyer and judge here.

Motion to Stay Trial Denied

Motions for a stay of district court proceedings can have a variety of bases – PTAB proceedings, other pending litigation, pending motions, dog ate your homework, etc. This case presented a new one – whether a case should be stayed while an arbitrator decided whether certain severed claims are subject to arbitration.