An International Guide to
Patent Case Management for Judges

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3.9.5 Appeals to the Federal Supreme Court and to the Superior Court of Justice

After an appeal from the final judgment has been decided, there is still the possibility of filing appeals to the STF and to the STJ. Such appeals are provided for in Articles 1,029–1,440 of the CPC. However, the matters that may be appealed are restricted and specific. While appeals to the STF aim to verify violations of the Constitution, appeals to the STJ deal with violations of federal law. In both cases, it is possible to argue a divergence in the already understandings of the STF or of the STJ.

The STJ or STF may disregard formal defects in a timely appeal or order its correction, provided that the defect is correctable and not considered serious (Article 1,029(3) of the CPC).

As a rule, the decisions of the STF and STJ do not have the effect of supersedeas. For this effect to be granted, it is necessary to apply to the respective higher court (if the appeal has been admitted but not yet assigned) or to the rapporteur, the president or vice-president of the court of origin (if the appeal has already been assigned), as long as the appeal has not yet had its admissibility examined (Article 1,029(5) of the CPC). Once the appeals have been admitted, Article 1,034 of the CPC provides that they can only be about matters of law, not allowing a review of facts or evidence. The appeal, however, has the effect of review, allowing the court to also hear the other causes of action or grounds when recognizing the illegality or unconstitutionality with general repercussion.

Article 1,035 of the CPC highlights the importance of the general repercussion for appeals to the STF, stating that the STF may, in an unappealable decision, not hear an appeal to the STF that does not have a matter recognized as having general repercussion (meaning the existence of relevant economic, political, social or legal issues that go beyond the interests of the parties in the case). The general repercussion must be demonstrated in a specific chapter of the appeal. Once the general repercussion is recognized in an appeal to the STF, the rapporteur orders the stay of all pending individual or class proceedings in Brazil on the same issue, and the appeal must be heard within one year (Article 1,035(9) of the CPC).