Shen-Wei (USA), Inc. v. Ansell Healthcare Prods., Inc., No. 05 C 6003, 2007 WL 2903184 (N.D. Ill. Sep. 28, 2007) (Guzman, J.).

Judge Guzman denied defendant’s motion for summary judgment of invalidity pursuant to 35 U.S.C. § 102(b). Defendant argued that plaintiffs sold medical gloves embodying the claims of their patent, U.S. Patent No. 6, 953,582 (the “’582 patent”), to a glove with a coating of a skin-soothing substance in July 1999, approximately two years before the ‘582 patent’s July 1, 2001 critical date. Furthermore, plaintiffs admitted that they sold patented gloves as early as July 1999 by failing to cite any contradictory evidence in their responses to defendant’s Local Rule 56.1 statement.

But plaintiffs argued that the ‘582 had a right to the filing date of its parent, U.S. Patent No. 6,274,154 (the “’154 patent”). The ‘154 patent only disclosed coating a glove with aloe vera. But plaintiffs argued that the ‘154 patent inherently disclosed skin-soothing substances other than aloe vera. Plaintiffs supported its arguments with testimony from the inventor and plaintiffs’ expert.

Because, among other reasons, defendant failed to support its denials of inherency with any facts, the Court deemed admitted, at least, structural inherency and inherency of theory. Because defendant admitted inherent disclosure, plaintiffs’ ‘582 patent had the critical date of its parent ‘154 patent – April 7, 1998. Plaintiffs’ admitted July 1999 sales of patented gloves, therefore, were not an on-sale bar.

Practice tip: When making or responding to Local Rule 56.1 statements, always support your statements or responses with evidence.