Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Willfulness Determination Should Await Jury’s Assessment of Reasonableness

The court denied defendant's motion for summary judgment that it did not willfully infringe plaintiff's board game patent. "When, as in this case, a party defends against a charge of willful infringement by pointing to a 'reasonable' defense that turns on a disputed question of fact or a mixed question of law and fact, the trial court may 'allow the jury to determine the underlying facts relevant to the defense in the first instance.'. . . [Other] courts have concluded that the best course of action is to reserve [In re Seagate Tech., 497 F.3d 1360 (Fed. Cir. 2007)]'s first, objective prong until the parties make a full presentation of the evidence, subject to cross-examination, on the record and the jury has been given an opportunity to resolve any necessary fact finding."

Innovention Toys, LLC v. MGA Entertainment, Inc., et. al., 2-07-cv-06510 (LAED October 15, 2012, Order) (Morgan, J.).

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