The recent decision in the Loper Bright v. Raimondo case has sparked discussions about the impact on patent practice and the broader implications for government agency authority. The ruling, which saw SCOTUS admit to a serious mistake and take steps to correct it, has raised questions about the balance of power between the branches of government.

One of the key takeaways from the Loper opinion is the focus on humility versus hubris in judicial decision-making. The admission of a mistake by SCOTUS and the emphasis on the Constitution’s structure highlight the importance of maintaining separation of powers. This has significant implications for patent eligibility and the boundaries of judicial interpretation versus legislation.

The decision in Loper also has implications for the doctrine of obviousness-type double patenting (ODP) and the authority of the USPTO to create rules and regulations. With the demise of Chevron deference, the courts will now have to evaluate agency actions based on the Administrative Practices Act, limiting the scope of agency overreach.

The ruling in Loper has reignited discussions about the role of stare decisis and statutory decisis in judicial decision-making. The new majority on the Court, which appears less inclined to adhere strictly to precedent, could signal a shift in how past decisions are viewed and applied. This could have implications for patent royalties and other areas of patent law.

Overall, the Loper decision marks a significant shift in how government agency authority is viewed and evaluated by the courts. The focus on constitutional principles and the limits of judicial interpretation versus legislation will have ripple effects across various areas of law, including patent practice. It remains to be seen how this decision will shape future cases and the balance of power between the branches of government.