Partner George E. Quillin was quoted in the IP Watchdog article, “Amici and Practitioners Attempt to Read the Arthrex Tea Leaves” about oral arguments in the closely-watched U.S. Supreme Court patent case, United States / Smith & Nephew v. Arthrex.
Quillin told IP Watchdog: “A decision with the least immediate impact would be one in which the Court agrees with the government and Smith & Nephew that Administrative Patent Judges (APJ) have been inferior officers all along. Hence, there would be no need to for a judicial fix to anything, and the APJs and the PTAB would continue to operate just as contemplated in the American Invents Act. Yet such a decision could have very significant long-term implications on for the country beyond patent law. As Justice Kavanaugh explained during oral argument, ‘What I’m worried about is this gives a model for Congress to eliminate agency review of ALJ decisions . . . that would allow Congress to give extraordinary power to inferior officers, which is not how our government is ordinarily structured.’”