In the case, Kimble v. Marvel, Stephen Kimble is trying to gain additional rights for his patent of the web-shooting glove that has commonly been used in several iterations of Spider-Man toys. Kimble assigned the patent in exchange for a royalty fee. Marvel ended up paying Kimble over $6 million dollars. However, when the patent expired in 2008, Marvel believed they no longer had to pay the royalty fee.
The precedent of not paying a royalty fee once a patent expires was set by a 1964 Supreme Court ruling in the case Brulotte v. Thys Co in a case involving a harvesting machine. Kimble and his lawyers are claiming that this precedent should be overturned.
The Supreme Court is expected to rule on the case by the end of June.