Obviousness is a killer weapon for a defense lawyer in a patent infringement case. If he or she can prove that the patent in question is “obvious” (that is, not inventive and not worthy of a patent), the case can be tossed once and for all.

But should juries be weighing in on whether a patent is obvious? An amicus brief in a case with Supreme Court aspirations makes the argument that judges should be the one deciding the issue, not the jury.