Patentable Subject Matter

Assessing whether subject-matter is statutory requires a determination as to
whether: the invention (1) falls within the statutory definition of “invention”
provided by the Patent Act;  (2) is not within a class of subject-matter that is
specifically excluded by the Patent Act; and (3) is not otherwise excluded by
operation of judicial interpretation of the Patent Act.

May 29, 2024
Person holding needle and vial

Appeal Court Clarifies Patentability of Methods of Medical Treatment

2024 FCA 23: In Pharmascience v Janssen, the Federal Court of Appeal offers additional commentary on the patentability of methods of medical treatment in Canada.
January 10, 2024
Person pumping gas into their car at a gas station

Appeal Board Weighs in on Patentability of Software Subject Matter

2023 CACP 23: Hot on the heels of the recent Benjamin Moore decision, Canada's Patent Appeal Board has considered the patentability of a computer-implemented invention.
August 14, 2023

Back to the Motherboard: Still No Clear Test for Software Patent Subject Matter

2023 FCA 168: In its long-awaited decision, the FCA reiterated the importance of judicial minimalism and rejected a structured analytical framework.
June 20, 2022
Photograph of three baseballs on the grass, representing three strikes.

Three Strikes: Federal Court Rejects CIPO’s Approach to Software Patent Eligibility

2022 FC 923: For the third time since 2011, CIPO’s approach to software patent eligibility has been struck down by the Federal Court.
March 7, 2022
A photo of two TSA-approved luggage locks bearing the red Travel Sentry logo.

Maker of Travel Locks Fails to Revive Patents on Appeal

Travel Sentry, Inc. v David A. Tropp, No. 2021-1908 (Fed. Cir., Feb. 14, 2022). The patents claimed an economic practice and method of organizing human activity, which is not subject-matter that can be protected under the patent system.
November 15, 2021
Photo of computer screen showing a code editor.

Landmark Graphics Benefits Again From PAB’s Post-Choueifaty Approach

2021 CACP 42: Cementing its post-Choueifaty approach to patentable subject-matter in Canada, the PAB found all claimed elements to be essential in the computer-implemented invention.
November 2, 2021
Photo of a hand holding a credit card above a laptop keyboard.

Apple and Visa Persuade Federal Circuit to Invalidate Patents for Secure-Payment

Fed. Cir. No. 2020-2044: The Federal Circuit found that the patents were directed to an abstract idea, with no additional elements to transform them into patentable subject-matter.
July 7, 2021

CAFC Invalidates a Camera Patent, Blurring Lines in the Patent Eligibility Inquiry

Fed. Cir. No. 2020-1760: The CAFC sided with Apple and Samsung, finding a patent for an “improved” digital camera to be an abstract idea and not patent-eligible subject matter.
June 7, 2021
Close up view of a green circuit board for a computer

PAB Allows Two Software Patents, Revealing Post-Choueifaty Approach

2021 CACP 9, 2021 CACP 12: In two recent decisions involving software patents, the Patent Appeal Board found the inventions to be directed to patentable subject-matter
February 16, 2021
Close-up photograph of server with multiple ethernet cords plugged in

Patent Appeal Board Rules Choueifaty Patent Application to Be Patentable

PAB 1556: Canada’s Patent Appeal Board reconsidered Mr. Choueifaty’s patent application for a computer-implemented method of managing portfolio assets.
November 2, 2020
Photograph of eyeglasses focusing on a computer screen displaying software code.

After Choueifaty: A New Test for Examining Software Inventions in Canada

Andrew Currier and Stephen Perry review best practices for drafting software patents to global standards and propose a new test for examining software inventions in Canada.
September 23, 2020
Lines of programming code on a computer screen.

Federal Court Rejects CIPO’s “Problem-Solution” Approach to Claim Construction

2020 FC 837: A recent decision spells the end to the problem-solution approach, which has long been used to block patent applications for software.
August 10, 2020
Macro photograph of a computer keyboard with black keys.

Infringer Uses Marking Requirement to Escape Pre-Suit Damages

Fed. Cir. 2019-2041 - The CAFC held that Packet Intelligence was precluded from claiming $3.5M in pre-suit damages because the marking requirement was not met.
December 9, 2019
The word blockchain surrounded by symbols of bitcoin, finances, mobile devices, money, computer networks.

Patenting Blockchain Technologies

Is patenting blockchain possible? Do patents detract from the decentralization of blockchain? This article explains the ins and outs of blockchain patents.
October 11, 2019
Close up photo of an automotive hub cap and tire of a car.

Automotive Patent Overturned As “Monstrous” §101 Grows Another Head

CAFC 2018-1763 – In fiercely dissented decision, a top US court has invalidated an automotive patent, further extending the reach of the controversial §101.
August 23, 2019
A busnisess's empty board room with desk chairs and a table.

What Can Businesses Expect From the US Patent Reforms?

A draft bill released May 22nd proposes significant reforms to section 101 of the US Patent Act. Businesses should be aware of the commercial impact.
June 11, 2019
Legal textbooks on a shelf

CAFC Refuses to Hear Appeal from Patent Decision

AVX Corporation v Presidio Components (Fed. Cir., 2018-1106) A case recently dismissed by the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“CAFC”) confirms that […]
April 30, 2019
GUI on a computer monitor showing a stock performance

Stock Trading GUI Falls Short of Patentability Requirements in US

Fed. Cir. 2017-2257 - CAFC Reaffirms: GUI That Merely Collects and Displays Data Is Not Patentable
April 3, 2019
Researcher holding a petri dish in gloved hands

Method of Medical Treatment Patents in Danger?

Hikma Pharmaceuticals v. Vanda Pharmaceuticals, SCOTUS Docket No. 18-817 - The beginning of the end for method of treatment patents?
November 23, 2018

PAB Rejects Application: Ambiguous and Indefinite Claims are Unpatentable

PAB 1453 – The Patent Appeal Board found that Canadian Patent Application No. 2,612,950 for a “system and method for generating real-time indicators in a trading list or portfolio” was obvious, the claims did not define statutory subject matter and were indefinite.