Supreme Court Grants Certiorari in Nautilus v. Biosig Instruments, (13-369)

Can an ambiguous patent claim still meet the statutory requirement that patent subject matter be distinctly pointed out and claimed?

On January 10, 2014, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in the case of Nautilus v. Biosig Instruments, where the Federal Circuit held that statutory indefiniteness occurs only when claims are “not amenable to construction” or are “insolubly ambiguous.” This holding appears to be in tension with the long-standing statutory requirement that the claims of a patent must “particularly point out and distinctly claim the subject matter which the applicant regards as his invention.”

The Supreme Court will likely address the question of whether the Federal Circuit’s holding that claims are valid so long as they are not “insolubly ambiguous” has essentially eviscerated the statutory requirement that a patentee distinctly claim the subject matter of his invention.