Publication Date



In response to proliferating abuse of the functional
language allowances governing means-plus-function
patent claims in 35 U.S.C. § 112, the Federal Circuit, in
its recent decision Williamson v. Citrix, lowered the
presumption againstpatent claims arising under § 112.
Before Citrix, there existed a strongpresumption that the
scope of § 112 did not encompass claims not including
the specific language "means"-aloophole that drafters
employed to avoid being subject to § 112 limitations.
The Federal Circuit sought to remedy this loophole by
lowering the strength of the presumption and also by
shifting the focus of the presumption to language
analogous to "mean." This Note argues that the Federal
Circuit was correct in lowering the presumption, but
that the term "means" should be removed from the
analysis entirely, and the focus should be on functional
language in general.