October 19, 2006
The Federal Circuit: A Look Back
I've spent a lot of years in patent litigation, and the one thing I noticed over the years is that the meaning of the statutes changed because of the advent of the Federal Circuit. It became, for example, harder to invalidate a patent as "obvious" or "anticipated" because the court tightened up what those concepts meant. Perhaps good, perhaps not, but it's an interesting microcosm of the impact of the judiciary on statutory interpretation. Maybe it's not "activisim" when the court was specifically created to bring harmony to an area of law? It may be that the CAFC is unique in that respect.
An interesting article by Marcia Coyle about the CAFC and the good and bad it has brought over the last 25 years on law.com is here.
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