C.D. Cal.

Seven Months’ Delay Too Much for Venue Transfer After TC Heartland…. Or Is It?

Order Granting Defendant’s Motion to Transfer for Improper Venue or, Alternatively, to Dismiss, Blue Rhino Global Sourcing, Inc. v. Best Choice Products a/k/a Sky Billiards, Inc., M.D.N.C. (June 20, 2018) (Judge Loretta C. Biggs) and Adrian Rivera v. Remington Designs, LLC, C.D. Cal. (June 19, 2018) (Judge John A. Kronstadt)

Courts continue to work through the backlog of venue motions created by the combo of TC Heartland and In re Micron Tech. rulings. In a pair of almost concurrently issued opinions two courts reached differing conclusions as to whether a seven month delay was sufficient to deem a venue transfer motion waived. READ MORE

To Avoid Attorneys’ Fees, Support Your Trial Arguments

Genes Industry, Inc. v. Custom Blinds and Components, Inc., Case No. SACV 15-0476 AG (C.D. Cal. Jan. 29, 2018 Order Re Plaintiff’s Motion for Enhanced Damages and/or Attorneys Fees and Costs).  

The standard for determining when a patent litigation is an “exceptional case” under 35 U.S.C. § 285 such that an award of attorneys’ fees is justified is a deliberately discretionary, open-ended one. Under the Octane Fitness standard, an exceptional case is one that stands out from others with respect to either the substantive strength of a party’s litigating position or the unreasonable manner in which a party conducted itself during the litigation. This opinion provides several guideposts in terms of conduct that should be avoided. READ MORE

Steering Away From Confusion: Despite Advisory Jury Finding, Court Rules No Infringement of DRIVEWISE Trademark

Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law, Allstate Insurance Co. v. Kia Motors America Inc., C.D. Cal. (December 22, 2017) (Judge James Otero)

In a recent trademark infringement case, Judge James Otero of the Central District of California recently went against an advisory jury opinion and found that the plaintiff, Allstate Insurance Corporation (“Allstate”), failed to show likelihood of consumer confusion. Allstate brought suit against Kia Motor Corporation (“Kia”) in 2016, alleging that its “Drivewise” trademark used in connection with a usage-based insurance program that allows insurers to lower or raise insurances rates based on driving performance was infringed by Kia’s “Drive Wise” driver assistance system, which includes features such as blind spot detection, lane keeping assistance, smart cruise control, and autonomous emergency braking. Following a trial, an advisory jury reached a verdict in favor of Allstate finding a likelihood of consumer confusion. READ MORE

Two Recent Decisions Highlight Divergent Extraterritorial Application of Lanham Act and Copyright Act

The question whether and under what circumstances the Lanham Act and the Copyright Act will be applied to conduct occurring at least partially outside the United States grows increasingly important as the world economy continues to globalize and many manufacturers seek to extend their franchises across borders. Two recent federal court decisions have addressed this issue, underscoring the somewhat anomalous differences in extraterritorial enforcement of trade dress and copyright laws, as well as the ability of plaintiffs to obtain injunctive relief with extraterritorial effect. READ MORE

TC Heartland – One Month Later Delaware, Texas, California and Illinois Courts Most Popular Venues

We previously reported on the early impact of the Supreme Court’s decision in TC Heartland based on the first few weeks of new filings. (For a summary of the TC Heartland opinion and its implications, click here.) It has now been one month, and based on the filing data for the month since TC Heartland as well as historical data since the beginning of 2016, we now have a better sense of how things have changed and how things may look in the future. Using data obtained from Docket Navigator, we compared filings in the month since TC Heartland came down on May 22 with filings earlier this year and also for all of 2016. READ MORE

Use It or Lose It: Improper Venue

Order Denying Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss or Transfer Venue, Wordtech Systems Inc. v. Integrated Network Solutions, Corp., Case No. 2:04-cv-1971 (Judge Troy Nunley)

As you know, we generally report on decisions issuing from our beloved Northern District of California.  But this blog is committed to reporting on interesting cases from anywhere in the Northern California area.  So today we’re reporting on a fun patent case from Sacramento, which is actually north of San Francisco (but curiously in the Eastern District of California judicial district).  The order takes a look at whether there was proper venue, an issue that typically does not come up in patent disputes.  In an order that should shock no one, the court held that an 8 year (!) delay in moving to dismiss constituted waiver. READ MORE

See Ya! Motions to Transfer and Two Flavors of Judicial Experience

Order Granting Motion to Transfer Venue, Integrated Global Concepts, Inc. v. j2 Global, Inc. & Advanced Messaging Techs., Inc., Case No. C 12-cv-3434 (Judge Ronald Whyte)

Just in time for Wimbledon, Judge Whyte has “returned service” and backhanded one of his patent cases to Southern California, where it originated and where the original District Court had developed substantial experience with the underlying technology. Judge Whyte’s Order illustrates that not all “judicial experience” is alike, and that another district’s experience with relevant technical and scientific issues may carry particularly heavy weight in determining whether that venue is most appropriate for a case. READ MORE