Top cases cited in IP decisions in 2011

Utility, selection patents and sound prediction were key issues identified in an analysis of the cases cited in the 132 IP decisions released in 2011 by the Federal Court and Federal Court of Appeal. The most cited cases related to standard of review, and from the Supreme Court, the 2008 Sanofi decision, Whirlpool, Consolboard and Wellcome.

Using an automated analysis of the decisions released in 2011 and the cases cited in those decisions, the following list contains the most frequently cited decisions of 2011:

  1. Merck & Co., Inc. v. Apotex Inc., 2003 FCA 488 – standard of review from orders of prothonotaries
  2. Apotex Inc. v. Sanofi-Synthelabo Canada Inc., 2008 SCC 61 – obviousness and anticipation, selection patents
  3. Whirlpool Corp. v. Camco Inc., 2000 SCC 67 – claim construction
  4. Consolboard Inc. v. MacMillan Bloedel (Sask.) Ltd., [1981] 1 SCR 504 – utility and role of the specification
  5. Apotex Inc. v. Wellcome Foundation Ltd., 2002 SCC 77 – sound prediction and inventorship
  6. Eli Lilly Canada Inc. v. Novopharm Limited, 2010 FCA 197 (olanzapine) – selection patents
  7. Free World Trust v. Électro Santé Inc., 2000 SCC 66 – claim construction
  8. Mattel, Inc. v. 3894207 Canada Inc., 2006 SCC 22 – confusion and famous trademarks
  9. Housen v. Nikolaisen, 2002 SCC 33 – standard of review for appeal court
  10. Novopharm Limited v. Pfizer Canada inc., 2010 FCA 242 – utility

While many parallel citations have been incorporated in this analysis, use of parallel citations and incomplete citations may affect these results.

The top cited cases originating from the Federal Court (as opposed to the Federal Court of Appeal) were Justice Snider’s 2008 decision in perindopril (Laboratoires Servier, Adir, Oril Industries, Servier Canada Inc. v. Apotex Inc., 2008 FC 825) and Philip Morris Inc. v. Imperial Tobacco Ltd. et. al., (1987), 13 C.P.R. (3d) 289 (F.C.) on section 45 proceedings.