August 2015 Archives

District Court Denies Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction Where Plaintiff Sent ANDA Notice Letter

August 31, 2015

Defendants, Nang Kuang Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. ("Nang Kuang") and CANDA NX-2, LLC ("CANDA") (collectively, "Defendants") filed a motion to dismiss, asserting that the patent infringement action filed by Plaintiffs, Eli Lilly and Company ("Lilly") and the Trustees of Princeton University (collectively, "Plaintiffs"), should be dismissed for lack of personal jurisdiction.

As explained by the district court, "Nang Kuang is a Taiwanese generic drug manufacturer seeking approval from the FDA to market generic versions of ALIMTA®. CANDA, a Texas limited liability company, entered into an agreement with Nang Kuang whereby Nang Kuang agreed to exclusively manufacture and supply the ANDA Product to CANDA, and CANDA agreed to assist Nang Kuang with the U.S. litigation arising from Nang Kuang's submission of the ANDA, and find marketing partners to market, sell and distributed the ANDA Product if the ANDA application is approved by the FDA. As of this date, the FDA has not approved the ANDA, and neither Nang Kuang nor CANDA has commercially manufactured, used, sold or offered for sale in, or imported into, the United States any ANDA Product. On August 25, 2014, Nang Kuang and CANDA jointly provided a notice of certification to the required parties pursuant to 21 C.F.R. § 314.95(a) ('Notice Letter'), including Lilly's Indianapolis-based General Counsel and its Indianapolis trial counsel. The submission of the Notice Letter triggered the forty-five day period in which Lilly had to file the instant Hatch-Waxman action to challenge the ANDA and seek an order that the effective date of any approval of Nang Kuang's ANDA be not earlier than the expiration date of Plaintiffs' patents."

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District Court Grants Summary Judgment of No Damages for Failure to Mark

August 26, 2015

Plaintiff Juno Manufacturing, LLC ("Plaintiff" or "Juno") filed a patent infringement complaint against Defendant Nora Lighting, Inc. ("Defendant" or "Nora"). The complaint alleged that Defendant infringed Plaintiff's patent, No. 5,505,419 (the "'419 Patent"), entitled Bar Hanger for a Recessed Light Fixture Assembly. Nora filed a motion for summary judgment seeking a judgment that Juno was barred from recovering damages on the ground that Juno failed to properly label its products.

In its motion, Nora asserted that Juno failed to provide proper notice of the '419 Patent. As explained by the district court, the requisite notice can be actual or constructive.

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District Court Denies Motion to Exclude CEO from Providing Expert Testimony on Infringement

August 24, 2015

Defendant filed a motion to strike plaintiff's expert report on infringement, asserting that the report failed to comply with Fed.R.Civ.P. 26 because, among other things, the report did not constitute a written report under Rule 26. Instead, the plaintiff had provided a declaration from its CEO, who was also the inventor of the patents-in-suit.

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Enovsys v. AT&T: Court Excludes Plaintiff's Damage Expert for Failure to Apportion and Sua Sponte Bifurcates Trial into Liability and Damage Phases to be Tried to Different Juries

August 19, 2015

After the court struck plaintiff's damage expert's report for failing to tie damages to the limited feature of the patented invention, the court permitted the plaintiff to submit a supplemental expert report. Once the supplemental expert report was served, AT&T again moved to exclude the plaintiff's damage expert from the upcoming trial.

AT&T contended that the opinions in the Supplemental Report, organized around four alternative damages calculations presented in two sets of two, did not correct the defects in the original report because plaintiff's expert (Parr) did not tie "his damages calculations to the value of the patented invention." AT&T further argued that the calculations simply attempt to exclude certain non-infringing revenue from the royalty base and do not attempt to address apportionment at all, which runs afoul of the entire market value rule.

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Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings Based on Unpatentability Under Section 101 Denied Where Patents Were Not Directed to an Abstract Idea

August 17, 2015

Defendants Motorola Mobility, LLC, Amazon.com, Inc., Apple Inc., Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd., Huawei Device USA, Inc., HTC Corp., HTC America, Inc., Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., Samsung Electronics America, Inc., and Samsung Telecommunications America, LLC (collectively, "Defendants"), filed a Joint Renewed Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings Declaring All Asserted Patent Claims Invalid Pursuant to 35 U.S.C. § 101. The Plaintiff ContentGuard Holdings, Inc. ("ContentGuard") opposed the motion arguing that the claims were patentable.

The district court began by explain that: At a high level, the Stefik Patents are generally directed toward systems and methods for controlling the use and distribution of digital works in accordance with "usage rights" through the use of "trusted" systems. See claim 1 of the '007 Patent ("sending the digital content . . . to the at least one recipient computing device only if the at least one recipient device has been determined to be trusted"). The Court construed "trusted" to require that three types of "integrities"--physical, communication, and behavioral--be maintained. Similarly, the Nguyen Patents are generally directed toward systems and methods for controlling the use and distribution of digital works in accordance with "usage rights"--and more particularly, "meta-rights"--through the use of "trusted" systems.

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In-House Counsel Ordered to Sit for Additional Deposition After Emails Improperly Withheld on Basis of Privilege

August 13, 2015

Sprint Communications Company, L.P., filed a patent-infringement action against Comcast Cable Communications, LLC, Comcast IP Phone, LLC, and Comcast Phone of Kansas, LLC (collectively, "Comcast"). The district court had previously ordered Comcast to produce seven emails received by Comcast's in-house patent counsel, David Marcus, that Comcast had improperly withheld as privileged. After it received copies of the emails, Sprint moved to compel Comcast to produce Marcus for a second deposition to answer questions related to the emails.

The district court explained that the "recently produced emails involve communications from 2007 between in-house counsel for Comcast, Cox, and Time Warner Cable, and attorneys from the law firm of Dreier, LLP. The three cable companies had jointly retained Dreier to monitor proceedings in a patent-infringement lawsuit that Sprint had brought against Vonage Holdings Corp. and Vonage America, Inc. in the District of Kansas. Some of the patents that were at issue in Vonage are at issue in this case."

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District Court Denies Stay Based on Inter Partes Review ("IPR") Where Less than 25% of Claims at Issue were Subject to IPR

August 11, 2015

Defendants HTC America, Inc., HTC Corporation, AT&T Mobility LLC, Cellco Partnership, Sprint Spectrum L.P., Kyocera Corporation, Boost Mobile, T-Mobile USA, Inc. and ZTE (USA), Inc. filed a motion to stay pending resolution of an inter partes review before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board ("PTAB").

The court began its analysis by explain that "[p]art of the quid pro quo of any stay pending inter partes review before the Patent Office is the promise of simplification. Not a guarantee, to be sure, but at least a promise that in exchange for freezing a case on the court's docket, significant issues may go away for good. Where the IPR will address some, but not all, claims asserted in the district court, relative to the quo the value of the quid shrinks considerably."

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Smartflash v. Apple: District Court Stays Case Sua Sponte Based on Pending Covered Business Method ("CBM") Patent Review

August 5, 2015

The court had previously stayed a cased pending between Smartflash LLC and Amazon and simultaneously declined to stay an earlier-filed case between Smartflash LLC and Apple, Inc. because the stay request came after a jury trial. The court was perplexed that despite Apple's argument for a stay in the first case well after conclusion of a jury trial, Apple had "curiously not requested a stay in this case even though CBM review has been instituted on all but one of the asserted patents."

The court then found that "[a]lthough the Court denied Apple's motion to stay in the earlier Apple case, this case is procedurally more similar to the Amazon case. This case involves the same asserted patents at the Amazon case. As with Amazon, this case is in its very early stages; the court has not yet held a scheduling conference. Similarly, substantial opportunities remain for cost-savings and issue simplification."

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District Court Denies Motion to Stay Pending Inter Partes Review as "Toss Up"

August 3, 2015

The Boeing Company ("Boeing") filed a motion to stay pending inter partes review" ("IPR") after Boeing had requested that the United States Patent and Trademark Office ("PTO") conduct an inter partes review of U.S. Patent No. RE39,618 ("the '618 patent"). Boeing argued that the asserted claims of the '618 patent were unpatentable and sought a stay of the case until the PTO decided whether to accept review and determines the patentability of the challenged claims.

The district court noted that it has broad discretion to manage its docket, including the inherent power to grant a stay pending agency review. Procter & Gamble Co. v. Kraft Foods Global, Inc., 549 F.3d 842, 849 (Fed. Cir. 2008). When determining whether to grant a stay, courts generally consider three factors: 1) whether a stay will simplify the issues in question; 2) the stage of litigation, i.e., whether discovery is complete and whether a trial date has been set; and 3) whether a stay would unduly prejudice the non-moving party. Zillow, Inc. v. Trulia, Inc., C12-1549JLR, 2013 WL 5530573, at *3 (W.D. Wash. Oct. 7, 2013); Nat'l Prods., Inc. v. Gamber-Johnson LLC, C12-840RSL, 2012 WL 3527938, at *1 (W.D. Wash. Aug. 14, 2012).

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