Friday, April 29, 2011

Judge Davis Adopts Another Streamlining Tool in Multi-Defendant Patent Litigation: Early Summary Judgment on Damages

As others have observed, Judge Davis and Judge Love of the Eastern District of Texas recently approved early Markman hearings as a streamlining tool in certain multidefendant patent cases. AdjustaCam provides a variation on that theme, allowing early discovery and summary judgment on certain damages issues the resolution of which could "ripen the case for settlement and narrow the accused products." "[Plaintiff] represented that its infringement allegations were relatively simple -- it could determine infringement from visually inspecting the accused products -- and the majority of discovery in the case would focus on damages. . . . Defendants agreed that much of discovery would relate to damages and that a limited, initial damages disclosure would help streamline the case. Defendants also requested the Court consider an early summary judgment motion addressing pre-suit damages and laches. Defendants represented this could ripen the case for settlement and narrow the accused products. . . . While the Patent Rules efficiently govern and manage most cases, the parties in this case have identified and agreed on specific modifications to the Court’s standard schedule that would streamline and potentially lead to an early resolution of the dispute. In this case, the issues of laches and recoverable damages are amenable to an early determination. Therefore, the Court will consider an early summary judgment motion on these issues."

AdjustaCam LLC v., Inc., et. al., 6-10-cv-00329 (TXED April 27, 2011, Order) (Davis, J.)

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