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Apple v. Motorola: “The Witness Lists Are Too Long”

And so began a recent order from Judge Posner in the ongoing dispute between Apple and Motorola over various patents directed to features of smart phones. Apple and Motorola have each asserted patent claims against the other and, as the case approaches trial, Judge Posner has issued an order regarding the phases and sequence of the trial.

As part of this order, Judge Posner has stated that there will be four trials, following each other in quick succession. The first will be a liability trial on Apple’s patents, followed by a liability trial on Motorola’s patents, a bench trial on equitable issues (if necessary) and a damages trial (if necessary). He also ordered that each liability trial will last no more than two weeks and that each of the other two trial will last no more than one week a piece.

As part of this phased trial order, Judge Posner also order the parties to submit a realistic witness list for each liability trial and noted that substitutions or additions would only be permitted for good cause. Judge Posner also put both sides on notice that he intends to quiz each of them at the pretrial conference regarding the substance of the testimony of each witness and how long the witness’s testimony will take. After that, he also ordered that each party must then submit a revised witness list for each trial.

As the case gets closers to trial, we can expect additional rulings in one of the more anticipated patent cases currently pending in the United States.

Apple Inc. and NeXT Software Inc. v. Motorola, Inc. and Motorola Mobility, Inc., Case No. 1:11-cv-08640 (N.D. Ill. April 3, 2012)

The authors of are patent trial lawyers at Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell LLP. We represent inventors, patent owners and technology companies in patent licensing and litigation. Whether pursuing patent violations or defending infringement claims, we are aggressive and effective advocates for our clients. For more information contact Stan Gibson at 310.201.3548 or