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Summary of Microsoft v. i4i Oral Argument (“Clear and Convincing” Standard for Patent Invalidity)

I noted in Supreme Court Prepares to Chop Down “Clear and Convincing” Standard for Proving Patent Invalidity that the Supreme Court had agreed to hear the appeal of the Microsoft Corp. v. i4i Ltd., case. In this case, i4i sued Microsoft for patent infringement and was awarded a $290M judgment, based on Microsoft’s use of XML in Word.

At issue here is the burden of proof Microsoft needs to satisfy to prove i4i’s patents invalid. As I previously explained, my hope is that Microsoft wins–they have argued to lower the standard of proof needed to invalidate a patent. This would be a minor change, but in the right direction. The Court heard oral arguments in this case earlier this week; they are summarized here. It’s hard to be sure what the Court will do but my impression is they will probably side, at least partially, with Microsoft.

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