On June 9, 2011, in a clearly written and straightforward opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously affirmed the Federal Circuit's decision in Microsoft Corporation v. i4i Limited Partnership, thus upholding the clear and convincing evidence standard for overcoming the presumption of patent validity set forth in 35 U.S.C. § 282. Justice Sotomayor delivered the opinion of the Court, which was joined by all of the Justices except Justice Thomas, who filed a concurring opinion, and Chief Justice Roberts, who recused himself. Relying on the language of section 282 of the Patent Act, the Court rejected both Microsoft's primary argument that invalidity need only be shown by preponderance of the evidence and its alternative argument that the preponderance standard must at least apply where the evidence before the fact finder was not before the PTO during the examination process.
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