Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Settlement Enforceable Despite Later Finding of Patent Invalidity Under 35 U.S.C. § 101​

Following an order granting summary judgment that the patent-in-suit was invalid for lack of patentable subject matter, the court granted plaintiff's motion to enforce an earlier settlement agreement between plaintiff and a third party supplier who agreed to indemnify a defendant. "Regret is no basis in the law to undo a contract made. . . . Objective indicators demonstrate that a contract was made. First, the August 8th email clearly demonstrates that [the intervenor] believed an agreement had been reached. The August 8th agreement set out the payment terms and a July 21st email set out the boundaries of the license [plaintiff] would offer [the intervenor]. . . . [T]he stipulation filed with this court clearly indicates an agreement had been reached. It represented to this Court that the parties had 'reached an agreement in principle. . . .' That stipulation evidences that [plaintiff] considered the matter settled and that [the indemnified defendant], an interested and close observer of the negotiations, did as well. . . . [The Intervenor] points out there were open contract terms such as assignability, notice, choice of law, and confidentiality. Delaware law, however, explicitly provides that '[a] settlement agreement is enforceable if it contains all essential terms, even though it expressly leaves other matters for future negotiation.'"

CallWave Communication LLC v. Verizon Services Corp. et al, 1-12-cv-01704 (DED February 13, 2017, Order) (Andrews, USDJ)

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