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Posts Tagged: "discovery"

Patent Infringement, Antitrust, and the Discovery Rule

On September 20, 2021, Judge John Robert Blakey in the Northern District of Illinois issued an opinion in a Walker Process patent fraud antitrust case denying defendants’ motion for summary judgment on their statute of limitations defense. TCS John Huxley America, Inc. v. Scientific Games Corp., No. 1:19-cv-1846, 2021 WL 4264403 (N.D. Ill. Sept. 20, 2021). The opinion established important principles regarding application of the statute of limitations to the “discovery rule” in a Walker Process antitrust case. The author’s firm, Freeborn & Peters, was one of the firms representing the plaintiffs. The plaintiffs had sued Scientific Games Corp. alleging a violation of Section 2 of the Sherman Act. The complaint alleged that Scientific Games, through its acquired entity, SHFL Entertainment, brought patent infringement litigation in 2009 and 2012 based on fraudulently obtained patents for automatic card shufflers used in licensed casinos.

Judge Albright Enters New Standing Orders on Motions to Transfer for Conformity with CAFC Mandates

On June 8, U.S. District Judge Alan D. Albright of the Western District of Texas signed an amended pair of standing orders regarding motions to transfer filed in patent infringement cases on his docket. The standing orders, which limit venue and jurisdictional discovery as well as require party status reports on motions to transfer, balances judicial efficiency with fairness to patent litigators in a court that has absolutely become one of, if not the, most important court in U.S. patent law today.

Which Invalidity Avenue to Take: Inter Partes Review Verses Post-Grant Review

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) provides invalidity tools via inter partes review (IPR) and post-grant review (PGR), but which route is better? …  PGRs are estimated to cost more because of their broader discovery rules.  If cost is a major factor, IPRs are a less-expensive option due to restricted allowance of discovery, the most expensive aspect of patent litigation… If the invalidating arguments or art are not strong, an IPR may be a better option due to its lower threshold for institution.  The same prior art arguments that failed in a petition for a PGR may have succeeded in an IPR petition due to the lower standard.

The Biggest Trade Secret Loophole You’ve Never Heard Of

What would you think if I told you that anyone from France or China or Brazil that was just thinking about some legal action in their country could come here and easily force discovery from a U.S. company, even though they couldn’t dream of getting the same information through their home courts? Crazy, right? That is exactly what has resulted from a law that’s so obscure it doesn’t even have a name, so we call it by its legal citation: 28 U.S.C. Section 1782.

Fishing for Trade Secrets

Modern discovery can be quite disruptive and expensive. Recognizing that there is a particular danger of abuse in trade secret cases, where defendants are often individuals or vulnerable start-ups, courts long ago began to manage this risk by requiring plaintiffs to identify the relevant secrets with “reasonable particularity.” In 1985, California decided to reinforce that requirement with a statute that prohibits a plaintiff from taking any discovery until it has complied. Some courts outside of California have embraced this approach as sensible case management, explaining that it prevents unbounded rummaging through the defendant’s own secrets. But a few have gone further, posing the issue as not just potential harassment of the defendant but also the risk that the plaintiff

St. Regis Tribe requests oral hearing, seeks discovery on political pressure at PTAB

The St. Regis tribe is seeking discovery on due process concerns posed by the potential of political or third-party pressure asserted to “reach an outcome inconsistent with the binding Supreme Court and Federal Circuit precedents.”… The St. Regis tribe is seeking the oral hearing to push for discovery in a total of 18 topics. These topics include the makeup of the panels in the St. Regis proceedings, the date each APJ was added to the panel, how the makeup of the panel was decided, who determined the makeup of the merits panel, when the decision on the panel’s makeup was made as well as the disclosure of all ex parte communications concerning the St. Regis case. St. Regis is also seeking communications made on the sovereign immunity issue between specific APJs, including APJs Jacqueline Harlow and Jennifer Bisk.

CAFC denies Amgen discovery in biosimilar patent dispute

In a patent infringement case governed by the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009 (“BPCIA”), the Federal Circuit found that it lacked jurisdiction to compel discovery in the district court. The Court also found that Amgen failed to meet the requirements for mandamus relief. Amgen Inc. v. Hospira, Inc., (Fed. Cir. Aug. 10, 2017) (Before Dyk, Bryson, and Chen, J.) (Opinion for the court, Dyk, J.)… When filing a BPCIA paragraph (l)(3) list of patents that could potentially be infringed by a biosimilar, all patents that could reasonably be infringed, based on available knowledge without discovery, should be included on that list. In an interlocutory appeal, the Federal Circuit lacks “collateral order” jurisdiction to compel a district court to order discovery concerning non-listed patents, nor is mandamus warranted, because relief is available on appeal from a final judgment.

Northern District of California revises local patent rules, requires damages disclosures early and often

Damages discovery in patent cases is usually contentious, expensive, and non-uniform in application by the courts. The patent owner, on one hand, wants to discover all possible revenue streams for settlement and resource allocation. The accused infringer, on the other hand, wants to minimize disclosure, because of the sensitivity of financial information and the belief that the suit is meritless. And the courts are caught in the middle. Compounding these issues, fulsome damages contentions typically are not defined until expert reports are presented, meaning the parties (and the court through a Daubert motion) will not know whether there is sufficient basis for the damages sought until late in a case.

Could an Email Stub Be the Downfall of Your Next Legal Case?

When responding to an eDiscovery request, you have likely experienced clients that have on premises email archives. The standard discovery process that the email archive vendors suggested you follow was no doubt to pull up the archive-wide search capability and perform a global search against the archive based on keywords. Once that results-set was available, you could perform some first pass culling and export the results set to external counsel or to a standalone eDiscovery platform for further processing. This procedure makes a great deal of sense… except for the overlooked fact that this process does not take into account the email stubs in the live email system.

What’s New with the Changes to the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Rules of Practice

The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB or the Board) Rules of Practice will change on January 14, 2017. The new rules will be applicable to all inter partes (oppositions, cancellations, concurrent use) and ex parte appeal proceedings, including those pending on January 14, 2017. The main changes to be aware of are outlined below:

How Artificial Intelligence Helps Lawyers Compete in today’s Data-driven World

The law waits for no one and neither does AI, which has already made a lasting impact in many areas of business, including the practice of law. Contracts, e-discovery and overall legal research have all changed thanks to AI, but as computers driven by ever-increasing processing power exhibit extraordinarily intelligent behavior we can only assume such advances are far from over. Whether within the enterprise, partners, customers, opposing litigants or elsewhere, legal assets cannot hide from the likes of Watson—or for that matter HAL—or other budding or to-be-conceived AI platforms… Despite paranoia and hyperbole surrounding AI since 2001: A Space Odyssey, intelligent computers will not take over the world, although that premise does make for exciting science fiction. While the rise of the machines is not something one should fear, AI systems and their architects have made significant strides in realizing learning machines that can adapt to dense, arcane legal terminology.

Source Code Review: Mitigating Risks and Reducing Costs

Source Code Review is the most powerful tool in a litigator’s war chest in patent and trade secrets cases. An important consequence of the judicial climate shifting farther away from business methods and closer to technically complex IP is that receiving parties now face a higher burden of proof and subsequently higher legal costs. Not only are receiving parties now required to be more diligent prior to a case filing but they also end up spending extra thousands of dollars reviewing millions of lines of code to successfully formulating their infringement arguments. A significant cost and exposure risk can be avoided simply by a diligent assessment on both sides as to what source code needs to be produced to the receiving party.

Patent Office amends PTAB Trial Practice Rules

Last week, on Friday, April 1, 2016, the United States Patent and Trademark Office published a final rules in the Federal Register. These newly minted final rules, which become effective on May 2, 2016, amend the existing trial practice rules pertaining to inter partes review (IPR), post-grant review (PGR), covered business method (CBM) review, and derivation proceedings brought into being by provisions of the America Invents Act (AIA). In a nutshell, these new rules change existing practice by allowing new testimonial evidence to be submitted with a patent owner’s preliminary response, adding a Rule 11-type certification for papers filed in a proceeding, allowing a claim construction approach that emulates the approach used by a district court following Phillips v. AWH Corp., 415 F.3d 1303 (Fed. Cir. 2005) for claims of patents that will expire before entry of a final written decision, and replacing the current page limit with a word count limit for major briefing.

Questions Corporate Counsel Should Ask to Get Maximum Value from E-Discovery

The volume of electronic data and the costs involved in collecting, culling and reviewing electronically stored information (ESI) are critical considerations in any litigation, large or small. Parties to a lawsuit are inevitably faced with significant litigation costs, due in large part to the burden of responding to overly broad discovery requests relating to ESI. To maximize the value of the e-discovery process, corporate counsel should ask how outside counsel plans to efficiently analyze ESI and reduce the expenses associated with e-discovery. Here are some specific questions to consider.

The Ups and Downs of the Innovation Act of 2015

Strong patent protection is almost universally considered critical to robust innovation. Venture capital and private investment in new technology-based businesses heavily depend upon it. Yet, the Innovation Act is positioned to significantly reduce the value of patents by making the risk of enforcement prohibitively high.