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Why Trademark and Copyright Counsel Should Heed the Patent Precedent of the Supreme Court

November 30, 2009

Rettew, Douglas A.


This article was written by Finnegan partner Douglas A. Rettew in collaboration with other panel speakers from a recent ABA conference. The article provides an overview of several recent Supreme Court opinions involving patent matters that are likely to have a lasting impact. The authors examine the details of the Quanta, MedImmune, and eBay cases, including the Court’s ruling in each and the cases’ future impact. The article concludes that the Supreme Court has exhibited a penchant for issuing broad legal precepts in some recent patent cases, which has had an effect on some analogous areas of trademark and copyright law; however, because the patent, trademark, and copyright disciplines protect different and unique intellectual property assets, the authors remind practitioners that differences among the disciplines should not be overlooked.