4 posts / 0 new
訪客 (未確認)
訪客 的照片


訪客 (未確認)
訪客 的照片


訪客 (未確認)
訪客 的照片




ides13 的照片


逆均等論(The Reverse Doctrine of Equivalents)

逆均等論,一般說法源起於U.S. Supreme Court於1950年Graver Tank v. Linde對均等論的判決,其指出均等論也可用於對抗專利權人,

In its 1950 decision of Graver Tank v. Linde, the U.S. Supreme Court explained that the doctrine of equivalents may also act against the interest of the patentee.8 When an accused product or proce ss is literally covered by the words of a patent claim, but is “so far changed in principle” that it performs in a “substantially different way,” the court may reach a finding of noninfringement.

但事實上,其起源應該可以推至1898年之更早的Boyden Power Brake Co. v. Westinghouse判決。

The doctrine received its genesis in Boyden Power Brake Co. v. Westinghouse, 170 U.S. 537 (1898), where the Court stated:

The patentee may bring the defendant within the letter of his claims, but if the latter has so far changed the principle of the device that the claims of the patent, literally construed, have ceased to represent his actual invention, he is as little subject to be adjudged an infringer as one who has violated the letter of a statute has to be convicted, when he has done nothing in conflict with its spirit and intent.



2、待鑑定對象己符合「文義讀取」,但實質上未利用發明(或新型)說明所揭示之技術手段時,適用「逆均等論」。但是,當專利的權利範圍,包含“實質上未利用發明(或新型)說明所揭示之技術手段”時,是否亦代表該權利範圍應為無效,因為其已“locking enablement”及“ writtten description”。

Even with this explanation, the reverse doctrine may seem anamolous, for if the claims measure
the invention, how can the claims cease to represent the actual invention? It seems that the proper resolution of a case in which the claims exceed the scope of the disclosed invention is to
hold the claims invalid as lacking enablement or a written description.


The Federal Circuit discussed the rationale for the reverse doctrine as follows:

The reverse doctrine of equivalents is invoked when claims are written more broadly than the
disclosure warrants. The purpose of restricting the scope of such claims is not only to avoid a holding of infringement when a court deems it appropriate, but often is to preserve the validity of claims with respect to their original intended scope.

Texas Instruments Inc. v. United States Int’l Trade Comm’n, 846 F.2d 1369, 1372, 6 USPQ2d
1886 (Fed. Cir. 1988) (denial of rehearing). Thus, perhaps the reverse doctrine actually helps the patentee, in that it gives the patentee half-a-loaf rather than no loaf at all.

當然,它的存在也不是完全沒有道理的,它可以適用在極為不平常的案例,在迅速發展的高科技領域,產生具大的進步時,是可以給領先者超過他們貢獻的權利範圍(?應該給予超過的範圍嗎?)。只是,到目前為止,Federal Circuit還沒有遇到這樣的領域。

The reverse doctrine of equivalents was instead intended to apply to extraordinary cases. It provides courts with something of an escape hatch, useful when a finding of literal infringement would work an unwarranted extension of the claims. The reverse doctrine might pertain to rapidly progressing fields of high technology, where radical subsequent advances allow predecessor patents to appropriate subject matter entirely beyond the scope of their technical contribution. Such circumstances appear so uncommon that, in its two decades of existence, the Federal Circuit has yet to encounter them.

2002年於“ Tate Access Floors, Inc. v. Interface Architectural Resources, Inc.”說的更清楚明白,「於CAFC判例,適合逆均等論判決不侵權的判決個數為零」。逆均等論僅不過是“過時的例外”。

In Tate Access Floors, Inc. v. Interface Architectural Resources, Inc., the Federal Circuit made abundantly clear that the reverse doctrine of equivalents was of extremely limited applicability. Judge Gajarsa observed that: “Not once has this court affirmed a decision finding noninfringement based on the reverse doctrine of equivalents.” Describing the doctrine an “an
anachronistic exception,” the court refused to apply or extend the reverse doctrine of equivalents.


小弟曾於某篇文章中看到地院依逆均等論判決不侵權,但卻被CAFC法官reverse,其認為地院的權利範圍解釋錯誤,應加入“其他限制條件”,只是忘了該文章出處,也忘了該判例名稱,有點可惜,目前正在尋找當中。不過,在此介紹一個“判例”,Multiform v. Medzam (Fed. Cir 1998),有一點點相關:

Claim 1: A packet for absorbing and immobilizing a liquid comprising an envelope which is degradable in said liquid...

Specification:"...starch paper which is degradable in water and other liquids...dissolve..."


其他,於”summary judgment”,是不可適用逆均等論,因為其為“事實問題”而非“法律問題”。

The closest the court came was the in banc decision in SRI International v. Matsushita Electric Corp. of America, 775 F.2d 1107, 227 USPQ 577 (Fed. Cir. 1985) (in banc), which, in a 6-5 vote, reversed a summary judgment of noninfringement based on the reverse doctrine of equivalents, finding issues of fact and remanding for trial on the issue.

一、 日本網站找到的文章:「An Analysis of Trends in the Construction of U.S. Patent Claims: 1997-2002」第24頁


三、Intellectual propert_Patent Law Course Materials.pdf
Professor Wagner


Log in or register to post comments