Post-KSR Empirical Analysis of Non-Obviousness Standard in US Courts
|關鍵字:||專利;顯而易知;實證研究;KSR;patent;obvious;empirical analysis;empirical study;KSR|
|摘要:||自美國最高法院於2007年4月30日針對KSR Intern. Co. v. Teleflex Inc.一案做出判決後，一般認為，未來法院在判斷專利非顯而易知性的標準上將比KSR案宣判前來得嚴格，而專利被判斷為顯而易知的比例也將大幅提高。然而本研究發現，KSR案之後，被聯邦巡迴上訴法院(CAFC)判斷為顯而易知的專利數比例並沒有明顯提高，而被地方法院判斷為顯而易知的專利數比例，也只有微幅上升。KSR Standard雖然是非顯而易知性判斷的重要考量，但並非壓倒性的因素。不論是CAFC還是地方法院，利用KSR Standard來判斷非顯而易知性的比重，皆未超過三成，該案所建立的原則，並不是導致專利被判斷為顯而易知的主要原因。截至目前為止，KSR案對於美國法院在判斷專利非顯而易知性標準上所造成之影響，並未如想像中來的大。|
Since the US Supreme Court entered judgment in the case "KSR Intern. Co. v. Teleflex Inc." on April 30th 2007, it has been commonly believed that the courts will elevate the non-obviousness requirement of patentability in the future, and that the proportion of the obvious patents will increase significantly. However, this empirical study reveals differently. The percentage of the obvious patents judged by CAFC didn’t increase notably while that by the district courts only ascended a small portion, as contrast to prior KSR cases. Althouh the KSR Standard is important in deciding obviousness, it is not considered an overwhelming factor. Neither the CAFC nor the district courts would rely predominantly on the KSR standard to decide the obviousness of patentability. As a whole, the KSR standard has been utilized less than 30% of all the factors considered. It plays a fairly small role in the court’s decisions of non-obviousness. Therefore, the KSR Standard is not the main reason to raise the obviousness findings. It is concluded that the KSR decision has not made as great an impact on the non-obviousness requirement as predicted.
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