Once again, a Womble Carlyle Patent Litigation Team and client Tandus Flooring, Inc. prevailed in a long-running dispute with a competitor.

The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit rejected a request by Interface Inc. to overturn the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (“PTAB”) decision that all of Interface’s contested claims were invalid as anticipated or obvious. The Court of Appeals announced its decision on February 8, less than a week after the hearing.

Both Tandus and Interface make floor covering products. The dispute began in 2013 in US District Court (N.D. Ga.) when Interface sued Tandus for patent infringement and subsequently moved for a preliminary injunction. After significant discovery and briefing, the Womble Carlyle team successfully opposed the motion for a preliminary injunction, filed for inter partes review at the USPTO, and convinced the Court to stay the litigation to let the USPTO decide the validity issue.

This week’s Court of Appeals decision upholds the PTAB’s December 2014 and February 2015 decisions that the claims in two Interface patents are invalid.  

Womble Carlyle Intellectual Property attorneys Barry Herman, Preston Heard and recently departed Dana Stano represented Tandus Flooring in the Court of Appeals and PTAB proceedings. Womble Carlyle attorneys Kristen Cramer, Christy Dupriest, and Ian Calvert also contributed to this successful defense.

Don Johnson has represented Tandus for 20 years and serves as the relationship attorney.

The Intellectual Property Practice Group at Womble Carlyle is a broad based group of IP litigators and prosecution attorneys experienced in nearly all technical fields.  The group includes a number of patent attorneys whose decades of experience, both within the USPTO and the Federal Courts, result in a team prepared to handle inter partes review and other post grant proceedings that were promulgated pursuant to the America Invents Act. 

Click here to read coverage on the decision at Law360.com.

Barry Herman is an intellectual property litigation partner working in Baltimore. He represents both domestic and foreign clients in a wide range of intellectual property matters, with an emphasis on patent litigation in district courts, the International Trade Commission, and the USPTO.

Preston Heard is an experienced patent litigation attorney who represents clients in a variety of industries, including the mechanical, computer and chemical sectors, in patent-related disputes. A registered patent attorney, Preston has represented patent clients in US District Court in numerous states, as well as before the US International Trade Commission and the USPTO.