Highmark Inc. v. Allcare Health Management System, Inc.Annotate this Case
572 U.S. ___ (2014)
NOTE: Where it is feasible, a syllabus (headnote) will be released, as is being done in connection with this case, at the time the opinion is issued.The syllabus constitutes no part of the opinion of the Court but has been prepared by the Reporter of Decisions for the convenience of the reader.See United States v. Detroit Timber & Lumber Co., 200 U. S. 321 .
SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES
HIGHMARK INC. v. ALLCARE HEALTH MANAGEMENT SYSTEM, INC.
certiorari to the united states court of appeals for the federal circuit
No. 12–1163. Argued February 26, 2014 —Decided April 29, 2014
Petitioner Highmark Inc. moved for fees under the Patent Act’s fee-shifting provision, which authorizes a district court to award attorney’s fees to the prevailing party in “exceptional cases.” 35 U. S. C. §285. The District Court found the case “exceptional” and granted Highmark’s motion. The Federal Circuit, reviewing the District Court’s determination de novo, reversed in part.
Held: All aspects of a district court’s exceptional-case determination under §285 should be reviewed for abuse of discretion. Prior to Octane Fitness, LLC v. ICON Health & Fitness, Inc., ante, p. ___, this determination was governed by the framework established by the Federal Circuit in Brooks Furniture Mfg., Inc. v. Dutailier Int’l, Inc., 393 F. 3d 1378. Octane rejects the Brooks Furniture framework as unduly rigid and holds that district courts may make the exceptional-case determination under §285 in the exercise of their discretion. The holding in Octane settles this case. Decisions on “matters of discretion” are traditionally “reviewable for ‘abuse of discretion,’ ” Pierce v. Underwood, 487 U. S. 552 , and this Court previously has held that to be the proper standard of review in cases involving similar determinations, see, e.g., id., at 559; Cooter & Gell v. Hartmarx Corp., 496 U. S. 384 . The exceptional-case determination is based on statutory text that “emphasizes the fact that the determination is for the district court,” Pierce, 487 U. S., at 559; that court “is better positioned” to make the determination, id., at 560; and the determination is “multifarious and novel,” not susceptible to “useful generalization” of the sort that de novo review provides, and “likely to profit from the experience that an abuse-of discretion rule will permit to develop,” id., at 562. Pp. 4–5.
687 F. 3d 1300, vacated and remanded.
Sotomayor, J., delivered the opinion for a unanimous Court.
Official Supreme Court caselaw is only found in the print version of the United States Reports. Justia caselaw is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect current legal developments, verdicts or settlements. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or information linked to from this site. Please check official sources.