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Chevron Crushes Oil Composition Patent in Patent Board Fight

Nov. 6, 2019, 8:52 PM

Chevron Oronite Co. LLC convinced a U.S. Patent and Trademark Office tribunal to cancel claims in a lubricating oil patent owned by a company that sued it for patent infringement.

Twenty claims in Infineum USA LP’s U.S. Patent No. 6,723,685 are invalid because they were covered by prior inventions, including a Japanese patent application and a published research paper, the agency’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board ruled Nov. 6.

The ruling is a win for Chevron in its bid to fend off Infineum’s 2018 complaint for allegedly infringing the patent with its additive lubricating oil packages. The U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware stayed the case pending the PTAB’s ruling on Chevron’s inter partes review petition.

The patent describes an additive lubricating oil compound that reduces engine wear and oil consumption.

Chevron “demonstrated by a preponderance of the evidence that claims 1–20 of the ’685 patent are unpatentable,” the PTAB said in its final decision.

Paul Hastings LLP represented Chevron. Attorney Christopher Strate represented Infineum.

To contact the reporter on this story: Malathi Nayak in Washington at mnayak@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rebecca Baker at rbaker@bloomberglaw.com; Keith Perine at kperine@bloomberglaw.com