Patent owners continue to face an uphill battle at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. According to U.S. Patent Office statistics as of December 31, 2015, a majority (72%) of the 529 Inter Partes Reviews (IPR) proceeding to trial and receiving Final Written Decisions ended in all examined claims being invalidated. The story is worse for Covered Business Method (CBM) patent post-grant reviews, where 81% of the 69 CBM proceedings receiving Final Written Decisions as of December 31, 2015 found all examined claims unpatentable. And the trend continues, with the Board issuing last week a Final Written Opinion invalidating all examined claims of a mortgage processing patent as unpatentable for failing to claim patent eligible subject matter.
In E-Loan, Inc. v. IMX, Inc., CBM2015-00012 (Paper No. 19), Petitioner E-Loan sought CBM review of claims 7, 8, 26, and 27 of U.S. Patent No. 5,995,947 (“the ’947 Patent”) under 35 U.S.C. §101. The ’947 Patent describes a method and system for loan processing, such as making and trading loan applications. Claims 7 and 8 recite a method of processing loan applications involving maintaining a database of pending loan applications and their statuses at a database server, where each party to a loan can search and modify that database consistent with their role in the transaction by sending requests to the server from a client device. The role may include a lender and the client device may include a lender station associated with at least one lender, where the lender can search the database for desired loan types, bid on loan applications and receive notification when a bid is accepted. Claims 26 and 27 are directed to a system having a database, a transaction server, a lender station, and a message notifying the lender that perform the steps recited in claims 7 and 8. Continue Reading USPTO “Forecloses” on Mortgage Processing Patent under Alice