D THREE ENTERS., LLC v. SUNMODO CORP., 17-1909, 17-1910, decided May 21, 2018

U.S. Patent Nos. 8,689,517; 9,068,339; and 8,707,655, directed to roof mount sealing assemblies.

The patents are invalid or not depending on being entitled to claim priority to a 2009 application (pages 2-4).  Some claims of the patents are directed to a genus (washerless) (pages 8-9).  The 2009 application disclosed one washerless assembly, which uses a W-shaped prong (page 9).  Since these claims are not limited to the W-shaped prong, a PHOSITA must recognize that any bracket could be used (pages 13-14).  Written description is not provided as the 2009 application does not indicate that any bracket could be used (pages 15-16).  Other claims are directed to a washer between or around, while the 2009 application shows a washer only above the flashing (page 16).  The 2009 application does not support an assembly with a washer in a genus location (page 17).

Hindsight: Alternatives, alternatives, alternatives.  In this case, specific disclosure of different brackets in the washerless embodiment and different washer positions for the washer embodiments may have supported the breadth of the claims.  The alternatives may be important for each embodiment and should provide for a lack of a part, type of the part, and placement of the part, for each part.  Broiler plate language may not be enough.  Disclosure of a single approach may make that single approach essential for the claim.