Novartis Corporation v. Webvention Holdings LLC et al, 1-11-cv-03620 (MDD June 7, 2016, Order) (Blake, J.)
Thursday, June 9, 2016
Despite Finding of Exceptional Case, Plaintiff’s Failure to Produce Invoices Warrants Denial of Attorney Fee Award
Although the court found that the case was exceptional under 35 U.S.C. § 285, it awarded plaintiff $0 in attorney fees because plaintiff failed to provide sufficient documentation of its claimed fees. "Despite three separate opportunities in its motion for attorneys’ fees, reply, and sur-surreply, [plaintiff] has not documented the work counsel performed in a manner that would allow the court to make its lodestar calculations. Instead, [plaintiff] basically asks the court to take its word for it in terms of what constitutes a reasonable amount of fees and costs. Although the court continues to believe this case was 'exceptional' within the meaning of 35 U.S.C. § 285, [plaintiff] has not met its burden. . . . Further, [plaintiff's] offer to allow in camera review is not sufficient. Opposing counsel has the right to challenge the basis for a fee award, and the court is entitled to opposing counsel’s views. . . . [Plaintiff] argues that it is precluded from producing invoices with descriptions of the work performed because such descriptions are protected by attorney-client privilege. . . . Not only does the case law not support its argument, but [plaintiff] filed motions to seal its motion, reply, and sur-surreply, which should have tempered any privilege concerns."