Federal judges ban Allergan’s sovereign immunity scheme in a slapdown that will bolster inter partes review for years to come
Allergan execs had thought they had found a clever way to dodge the threat of inter partes review of the patents for their big blockbuster Restasis. In the end, they $AGN paid a pretty price to bolster IPR, shutting and locking the door to the path they took — all while stewing in some intense public indignation over the effort.
A federal appeals court published their ruling Friday, concluding that the legal argument adopted by Allergan and its allies at the St Regis Mohawk tribe that the tribe’s sovereign immunity protected it from IPR didn’t apply here. Rather than a private dispute, the three-judge court concluded, IPR was more of an “agency enforcement action than a civil suit brought by a private party, and we conclude that tribal immunity is not implicated.”
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