Lessons From PTAB Full or Partial Denials to Obtain a Denial and Avoid an IPR

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Thursday, July 6, 2017
Recorded event now available

This CLE webinar will provide patent counsel with an analysis of the ever-increasing number of Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) denials and partial denials and offer take-home lessons applicable in practitioners’ daily practice.


The PTAB is denying almost a third of all inter partes review (IPR) petitions (60% granted FY2015-FY2017 to date + 7% joinder granted). Importantly, even in the granted petitions, some were granted on less than all of the challenged claims or on less than all asserted grounds. The grant rate for post-grant review (PGR) petitions is lower, 56% (19/34, FY2015-FY2017 to date).

These denials and partial denials provide a source of extremely valuable information for patent owners looking to avoid institution of an IPR or PGR and petitioners looking to avoid a denial. For example, in an overwhelming number of petitions denied, a Patent Owner Preliminary Response (POPR) was filed.

Early concerns by patent owners about “showing your hand” when it was not required seem to have been overcome by results indicating the PTAB’s desire to have cases front-loaded applies to both parties.

PTAB proceedings are supposed to be, by statute, “just, speedy, and inexpensive.” The PTAB can most efficiently use its resources to make the decision to institute based on the most information possible. Further, patent owners who regret not filing a POPR do not really have much recourse. Motions to reconsider IPR institution decisions so far have been routinely and resoundingly rejected.

As a patent owner, filing a proper POPR is the way the patent owner can help PTAB conclude that the petitioner has not met its burden of showing “a reasonable likelihohood” of prevailing with respect to at least one challenged claim. The POPR is also an opportunity to attack the petitioner’s standing and proposed claim construction before a decision on institution. As noted by PTAB APJs recently, the POPR is the patent owner’s chance to show the PTAB the flaws or inadequacies of the petition, not to get bogged down in the substantive arguments that will be presented if the petition is granted.

Listen as our authoritative panel of patent practitioners, with pioneering expertise in PTAB practice and differing backgrounds covering chemical, life science, computer, and business methods technologies, analyzes the substance of PTAB denials and partial denials for take-home lessons applicable in practitioners’ daily practice.


  1. Analysis of IPR/PGR petitions denied: patent owner arguments that worked
  2. Analysis of IPR/PGR petitions granted but number of claims to trial reduced
  3. Analysis of IPR/PGR petitions granted but grounds narrowed


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • How can practitioners use the lessons of the PTAB denials to learn what patent owners are doing to achieve their ultimate success: An IPR petition denial?
  • What can petitioners learn from the partially denied IPR institution decisions?
  • How can practitioners prosecute applications and claims to enhance likelihood of denial of IPRs and PGR petitions?


Thomas L. Irving, Partner
Finnegan Henderson Farabow Garrett & Dunner, Washington, D.C.

Mr. Irving has 35 years of experience in the field of IP law. His practice includes due diligence, patent prosecution, reissue and reexamination, patent interferences, and counseling, including prelitigation, Orange Book listings of patents covering FDA-approved drugs, and infringement and validity analysis in the chemical fields, as well as litigation. He has served as lead counsel in many patent interferences.

Joshua L. Goldberg, Partner
Finnegan Henderson Farabow Garrett & Dunner, Washington, D.C.

Mr. Goldberg focuses on patent office proceedings, client counseling, and litigation. Devoting the majority of his time to representing petitioners and patent owners in inter partes review and post-grant review proceedings, he regularly manages the preparation of written submissions, takes and defends technical expert depositions, and argues before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He also develops and manages global patent portfolios, and provides opinions on patent infringement, patent validity, and other intellectual property issues.

Cory C. Bell, Esq.
Finnegan Henderson Farabow Garrett & Dunner, Boston

Mr. Bell focuses on patent prosecution management, client counseling, post-grant practice, and litigation, with an emphasis on electronic technology. He assists in developing patent prosecution strategies for clients with various budgets and desired outcomes. His patent experience began as a patent examiner at the USPTO. He has evaluated thousands of patents and patent applications for licensing, monetization, or sale; assisted in prosecuting hundreds of patent applications; managed patent portfolios; conducted patent landscaping and competitor analysis; and filed patent reexamination, post-grant review, and inter partes review requests.


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David S. Bloch


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David Segal

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