Federal Circuit Decision Upholds Validity of GKN Automotive Patent

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

Brooks Kushman serves as legal counsel to uphold critical claims in GKN Automotive’s patent

Auburn Hills, MI (August 6, 2018) – The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit recently dismissed JTEKT’s challenges of GKN Automotive Ltd.’s patent claims in US 8,215,440, upholding the novelty and non-obviousness findings for key patent claims and in determining JTEKT lacked standing to appeal the prior decision.

JTEKT unsuccessfully challenged many of GKN Automotive’s patent claims before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) in 2015 relating to U.S. Patent No. 8,215,440. However, the PTAB confirmed the validity of key patent claims in the 2017 decision that are instrumental to GKN Autmotive’s all-wheel drive Twinster ® technology.

The appeals court, in a precedential opinion, ruled that JTEKT does not have standing for an appeal to challenge the PTAB decision. The patent issued in 2012 covers technology involving drivelines switchable between a four-wheel mode and a two-wheel mode.

“We are thrilled with the outcome of this matter.” stated Jennifer M. Brumbaugh, Deputy Director of Intellectual Property on behalf of GKN Automotive Ltd. “The ’440  patent is one key item of a suite of patents and intellectual property rights worldwide that protect our Twinster technology.  GKN Automotive will continue to defend its intellectual property and leverage our patent rights to maintain our market-leading position in all-wheel drive and electric mobility technologies.”

GKN Automotive Ltd. was represented by Linda Mettes, Kristin L. Murphy, and Sangeeta Shah of Brooks Kushman P.C. In addition to presenting arguments against JTEKT’s challenge to the PTAB decision, the legal team argued to the Federal Circuit that JTEKT failed to establish the requisite Article III standing required to pursue an appeal of the PTAB’s 2017 decision.