Friday, August 29, 2008

Light Reading For Labor Day: 2007 Annual US Court Report

When you're not preoccupied wiping BBQ sauce from your hands (and children's faces) this weekend, the Statistics Division for the Administrative Office of U.S. Courts released its annual report (all 416 pages) on "Judicial Business of the United States Courts."

Some interesting findings:

• After rising 14 percent in 2006, filings in the Federal Circuit fell 13 percent in 2007 (down 227 appeals) to 1,545, almost the same as total filings in 2003. The decreases appear to be related primarily to reductions in non-patent appeals (e.g., Merit System Protection Board, CAVC, etc.).

• As of September 30, 2007, 34 cases appealed from the USPTO were pending at the CAFC, as compared to 51 cases pending the year before.

• The Eastern District of Texas received more than 250 cases related to patents and reported higher filings of contract cases and prisoner petitions.

• In the district courts, 2,896 patent cases were launched in 2007, which is a slight bump (2.3%) from the 2,830 cases filed in 2006. To date, the biggest year for patent cases was 2004, where 3,075 cases were filed.

• Pendency of patent cases appears to be up: 353 patent cases were pending 3 years or more in 2006, as compared to 408 cases in 2007.

What was somewhat surprising was that, in general, little has changed in terms of the raw number of cases filed, terminated, and pending.

Read/download the entire report here (link)

See AmLaw Daily "Federal Court Statistics for 2007 Suggest Civil Courts Functioning As Expected" (link)

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