How Federal Circuit Judges Vote in Patent Validity Cases

24 Pages Posted: 29 Nov 1999

See all articles by John R. Allison

John R. Allison

University of Texas - McCombs School of Business

Mark A. Lemley

Stanford Law School

Abstract

We recently studied the outcomes of every final written patent validity decision at both the district court and Federal Circuit levels between 1989 and 1996. The study produced a variety of interesting statistics on patent validity questions. Using the dataset from that study, and matching it with the panels serving on each case, we describe in this paper how individual Federal Circuit judges voted in patent validity cases during that period.

The results may surprise many patent litigators. While there are some interesting differences in voting patterns, our overall conclusion is that the votes of Federal Circuit judges during this period defied easy description. Judges do not fit easily into "pro-patent" or "anti-patent" categories, or into "affirmers" and "reversers." We think this is a good thing for the court system. Still, there are some interesting facts to be found in the data.

Suggested Citation

Allison, John R. and Lemley, Mark A., How Federal Circuit Judges Vote in Patent Validity Cases. Florida State Univeristy Law Review, Vol. 29, p. 745, 2000. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=189512 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.189512

John R. Allison

University of Texas - McCombs School of Business ( email )

CBA 5.202
University of Texas at Austin
Austin, TX 78712
United States

Mark A. Lemley (Contact Author)

Stanford Law School ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305-8610
United States

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