Monday, November 26, 2012

Summary Judgment of Noninfringement Against “Patent Troll” Who Filed “Hundreds of Lawsuits” Did Not Warrant Award of Attorneys’ Fees

The court denied defendant's motion for attorneys' fees under 35 U.S.C. § 285 following summary judgment of noninfringement. "[Defendant] characterizes [plaintiff] and its counsel as 'one of the nation’s leading "patent trolls"' who filed suit against [defendant] knowing there was no conceivable infringement. . . . [Defendant] also argues that [plaintiff] acted in bad faith because it has filed hundreds of lawsuits, it routinely engages in 'shakedown tactics' to obtain settlements, and none of its other cases have proceeded to claim construction proceedings. . . . Although [defendant] objects to [plaintiff's] evidence of pre-suit claim charts, there is still insufficient evidence in the record to establish an 'exceptional case' warranting attorneys’ fees. . . . 'Even if plaintiff's pre-suit investigation was unreasonable, an unreasonable investigation alone does not demonstrate that the ensuing litigation was vexatious, unjustified, or brought in bad faith.' . . . Furthermore, evidence that [plaintiff] has filed suit against many other parties does not, by itself, prove that litigation is unjustified or baseless."

ArrivalStar S.A., et. al. v. Meitek Inc., et. al., 2-12-cv-01225 (CACD November 20, 2012, Order) (Selna, J.).

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