Curver Luxembourg v Home Expressions
In the recent case of Curver Luxembourg v. Home Expressions, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit brought welcome clarity to an issue of importance in U.S. design patent law. In the past, in the midst of some uncertainty, the actual words of the claim of a U.S. design patent have been treated mainly as a formality, with little to no effect on the scope of the patent. In both infringement litigation and design patent procurement, claim scope has been determined by focusing on what is shown in the design patent drawings, not on the text of the claim itself. Curver Luxembourg represents a shift away from that approach. According to the court, “claim language,” not just the drawings, “limits the scope of the claimed design” and “it is inappropriate to ignore” the text of a U.S. design patent.
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“Curver Luxembourg v Home Expressions,” by Mark J. Thronson was published in Intellectual Property Law Magazine on November 4, 2019.