means-plus-function clause.Patent law. An element in a patent claim, usu. in a claim for an apparatus patent, asserting that the design is a way to perform a given function or is a step in the process of performing a given function. • The claim will be interpreted as including the structure or means stated in the patent specification and equivalents at the time of interpretation or infringement, but not all possible means of achieving the same function. 35 USCA § 112, ¶ 6. — Also termed means-plus-function element; means-plus-function claim. See combination patent under PATENT(3). [Cases: Patents 101(8).]

[Blacks Law 8th]