On Monday, June 21, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling in Kimble v. Marvel Enterprises, leaving intact a 50-year-old rule barring royalty agreements that continue after a patent expires. Law360 asked reputable attorneys to explain the significance of the decision.
“Those looking for clues as to the court’s view of patent licensing generally will not find much in the court’s decision. Rather, the court’s reasoning had little to do with patent law — the court simply affirmed its commitment to stare decisis, particularly in statutory cases where Congress can ‘correct’ a purportedly ‘erroneous’ decision. Were the court writing on an empty slate, it very well may have reached the opposite result. However, the court’s view was that the country has lived for five decades under the existing rule, and if that rule should be changed, Congress should do it, not the court.” – Jonathan Steinsapir, Kinsella Weitzman Iser Kump Holley LLP