Previously, the Supreme Court held, in the Biosig case, that the Federal Circuit’s standard for determining indefiniteness (a claim is indefinite when it is not amenable to construction or insolubly ambiguous) was incorrect.  The standard for determining indefiniteness adopted by the Supreme Court requires that a patent claim is invalid for indefiniteness if the claim, when read in light of the specification delineating the patent, and the prosecution history, fails to inform, with reasonable certainty, those skilled in the art about the scope of the invention.  Applying the Supreme Court’s standard, the Federal Circuit, on remand from the Supreme Court, held that the claim term, “in a spaced relationship,” when describing electrodes on a handheld heart rate monitor and considered in the context of the intrinsic evidence, informed, with reasonable certainty, those skilled in the art about the scope of the invention, i.e., the Federal Circuit reached the same conclusion when it previously applied its prior indefiniteness standard.  The Federal Circuit twice held that the space between the electrodes ranged from between infinitesimally small to less than the width of a user’s hands.

Biosig Instruments, Inc. v. Nautilus, Inc., Case No. 2012-1289 (April 27, 2015); Opinion by: Wallach, joined by Newman and Schall; Appealed From: District Court for the Southern District of New York, Hellerstein, J. Read the full opinion here.

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