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KSR International Co. v. Teleflex, Inc.

United States Supreme Court
550 U.S. 398 (2007)

KSR International Co. v. Teleflex, Inc.


Teleflex, Inc. and its subsidiary Technology Holding Company (collectively “Teleflex”) (plaintiff) held the exclusive license to the ‘565 “Engelgau” patent, entitled “Adjustable Pedal Assembly with Electronic Throttle Control.” Claim 4 of the patent described a mechanism of placing an electronic sensor on an automobile pedal which then transmitted information to the computer that controlled the vehicle’s throttle. KSR International Company (“KSR”) (defendant) added a similar type of sensor to an existing pedal and was subsequently sued by Teleflex for patent infringement. KSR argued that Teleflex’s claim 4 was invalid under the Patent Act because it was obvious. The district court granted summary judgment to KSR, and Teleflex appealed. The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed, strictly applying the “teaching, suggestion, or motivation” test (TSM test). KSR’s petition for writ of certiorari was granted.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Kennedy, J.)

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