Index ← 3770 CFJ 3771 3772 → text
===============================  CFJ 3771  ===============================

      When a CFJ judgement finds that conditions for awarding a
      contested patent title are valid, that constitutes the
      "announcement of the authorizing conditions" for the REQUIREMENT
      to make the award in a timely fashion.

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Caller:                        G.

Judge:                         D. Margaux
Judgement:                     FALSE

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History:

Called by G.:                                     25 Aug 2019 19:33:08
Assigned to D. Margaux:                           27 Aug 2019 21:38:53
Judged FALSE by D. Margaux:                       31 Aug 2019 13:45:36

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Caller's Arguments:

R649 reads in part:
>      A person permitted and enabled to award (revoke) a Patent Title
>     SHALL do so in a timely fashion after the conditions authorizing
>      em to do so are announced, unless there is an open judicial case
>      contesting the validity of those conditions.

If there is an open judicial case on the Patent Title conditions when
the original time limit expires, and the judgement later finds that
the conditions for the award were valid, then the options for
interpreting this clause are (1) a retroactive setting of the timing
requirement to the original announcement conditions, which is quite
problematic, (2) an elimination of the requirement entirely, because
the time limit never passes under the right conditions, which is also
unintended, or (3) treating the judgement as the announcement of the
authorizing conditions.  Option 3 makes the best sense.

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Judge D. Margaux's Arguments:

CFJ 3771 judged FALSE, but with reasoning that will probably satisfy the 
Caller.

Under R649, “a person permitted and enabled to award (revoke) a Patent 
Title SHALL do so in a timely fashion after the conditions authorizing em 
to do so are announced, unless there is an open case contesting the 
validity of those conditions.” 

The question presented is whether a judgement on “an open judicial case 
contesting the validity of those conditions” is itself one of the 
“conditions authorizing [a player] to [award (revoke)] a patent title.”  
Under the current ruleset, the answer is FALSE. A player CAN award 
(revoke) a patent title during the pendency of a judicial case, and R649 
does not change that. Under R649, a player does not NEED to award the 
title during the pendency of the judicial case, but the Rule does not say 
the player CANNOT do so if the conditions are satisfied. 

Although not necessary for the decision of this CFJ, it would be useful to 
give some guidance about when the time period in R649 becomes triggered.

In my view, R649 REQUIRES a player to award (revoke) a patent title in a 
timely fashion if ALL of these four circumstances are satisfied:

    (1) e is “permitted” to do so, 
    (2) e is “enabled” to do so, 
    (3) “the conditions authorizing em to do so are announced,” AND 
    (4) “there is [NOT] an open case contesting the validity of those 
conditions [in (3)].”

It is clear that the player MUST award (revoke) the title within a timely 
fashion if ALL of those circumstances become satisfied at the same time 
and no judicial case arises.

The Rule is ambiguous, however, about when the timely fashion period 
starts and ends if conditions (1), (2), and (3) are satisfied, but an open 
case renders (4) unsatisfied for a period of time.

One reading of the Rule would say that the “timely fashion” language is 
triggered by the satisfaction of (1), (2), and (3), and the requirement is 
entirely excused if (4) becomes unsatisfied. That interpretation would 
read the text as saying, in essence, “a player MUST award/revoke within 7 
days after (1), (2), and (3) become satisfied, except that the player 
never needs to do so if (4) is unsatisfied during that time period.”

I don’t think that reading makes much sense.

Another reading makes more sense, in my view. We could read the Rule as 
saying that the “timely fashion” is triggered at any time when (1), (2), 
(3), AND (4) are ALL satisfied.  That interpretation would read the text 
as saying, in essence, “a player MUST award/revoke within 7 days after 
(1), (2), (3), and (4) become satisfied.”

That would mean that, when an open case is resolved, the time period 
starts anew.

My understanding is that a Rule violation would not occur if one of the 
conditions becomes unsatisfied during the time period. So, if a new 
judicial case is opened during a time period when (1), (2), (3), and (4) 
were satisfied, then the player would not be REQUIRED to award (revoke) 
the patent title until a later time when all four conditions are satisfied 
again.

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