Sutherland Legal Alert: Patents on Computerized Settlement of Foreign Exchange Transactions Invalid Under Bilski

Sutherland Legal Alert: Patents on Computerized Settlement of Foreign Exchange Transactions Invalid Under Bilski

By Ann Fort and Josh Curry

In another district court decision applying Bilski v. Kappos, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has declared four patents invalid as directed to unpatentable "abstract ideas." CLS Bank Int'l v. Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd., No. 07-974, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23669 (D.D.C. Mar. 9, 2011) [enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers]. The decision addresses patents purporting to cover computer-implemented methods, systems, and products for exchanging financial obligations. If this decision is upheld on appeal, it could have sweeping effects on business and financial method patents, calling into question the validity of these types of patents across many technology sectors.

Patentee Alice Corporation claimed that CLS Bank infringed four patents directed to methods, systems, and computer-program products for employing a computerized intermediary to facilitate the simultaneous exchange of obligations in order to minimize risk. Essentially, Alice's patents claim computer systems and technology used across the world's financial system to settle foreign exchange transactions. CLS Bank asserted in response that Alice's business and financial method patents were invalid as directed to non-statutory subject matter and moved for summary judgment. Judge Rosemary M. Collyer of the D.C. District Court agreed, and held Alice's patents invalid. The court found that the basic business or financial concept of settling financial obligations via a computer system unpatentable, and compared Alice's patents to the hedging method struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court in Bilski. ...

Read the full version of Patents on Computerized Settlement of Foreign Exchange Transactions Invalid Under Bilski

If you have questions about this Legal Alert, please feel free to contact any of the attorneys listed below or the Sutherland attorney with whom you regularly work.

Ann G. Fort 404.853.8493 ann.fort@sutherland.com
Malvern U. Griffin III 404.853.8233 griff.griffin@sutherland.com
William F. Long 404.853.8347 bill.long@sutherland.com
Joshua D. Curry 404.853.8108 josh.curry@sutherland.com

© 2011 Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP. All Rights Reserved.
This communication is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal advice or a recommended course of action in any given situation. This communication is not intended to be, and should not be, relied upon by the recipient in making decisions of a legal nature with respect to the issues discussed herein. The recipient is encouraged to consult independent counsel before making any decisions or taking any action concerning the matters in this communication. This communication does not create an attorney-client relationship between Sutherland and the recipient.

For more information about LexisNexis products and solutions connect with us through our corporate site.