By Eric Schweibenz
On October 2, 2012, ALJ Charles E. Bullock issued Order No. 51 in Certain Wiper Blades (Inv. No. 337-TA-816).  In the Order, ALJ Bullock granted Respondents’ motion for summary determination of invalidity of claims 1-6 and 8-10 of U.S. Patent No. 6,611,988 (“the ‘988 patent”) and all claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,553,607 (“the ‘607 patent”), 6,836,926 (“the ‘926 patent”), and 6,973,698 (“the ‘698 patent”).

By way of background, ALJ Bullock recently issued Order No. 45, finding claim terms in each of the ‘988, ‘607, ‘926, and ‘698 patents to be indefinite.  Due to its size, we have broken Order No. 45 into the following three parts: part 1, part 2, and part 3.

According to the order, Respondents assert that summary determination is “appropriate at this juncture to save the parties’ and the Administrative Law Judge’s resources by avoiding the need for further litigation over invalid claims.”  The Commission Investigative Staff (“OUII”) filed a response in support of Respondents’ motion, noting that in light of the finding in Order No. 45, the claims mentioned in the motion are invalid as a matter of law.

Complainant Robert Bosch LLC (“Bosch”) opposed the motion, arguing that issues of material fact remain with respect to the definiteness of the terms found to be valid.  The ALJ noted that, “while styled as an opposition, Bosch’s response is, in essence, a motion for reconsideration” of the ALJ’s original findings on indefiniteness and invalidity.

ALJ Bullock summarized the law of summary determination, and in light of the finding of invalidity in Order No. 45, considered the motion suitable for summary determination.  Thus, Respondents motion as to summary determination of invalidity was granted.