Despite, SAP AG agreeding to pay $306 million to resolve a long-running copyright infringement lawsuit by Oracle Corp., the litigation is not really over.
The case, which began in 2007, has a storied history. Oracle filed the lawsuit after discovering that an SAP unit had infringed certain Oracle software. Shortly before the trial began, SAP admitted that a former subsidiary, TomorrowNow, had illegally downloaded Oracle’s intellectual property.
The jury ultimately awarded Oracle $1.3 billion in damages, which remains one of the largest damages award for infringement of intellectual property. On appeal, however, the appellate court invalidated the award, concluding that the evidence did not support the high figure. A new trial on damages was scheduled to begin this month.
Despite the settlement, Oracle has filed an appeal seeking to reinstate the jury verdict. Also, SAP will not be required to pay the damages until after all appeals or new trials in the case are resolved. If Oracle wins a judgement that is less than $306 million in any subsequent ruling or trial, SAP will reportedly pay the difference under the terms of the settlement.
As this case highlights, all companies (large or small) must be particularly mindful of the activities of subsidiaries because they may ultimately be held responsible for any IP-related liability. Therefore, it is imperative to provide employee training across the board regarding what types of conduct can constitute infringement.
How Can I Help?
If you, or someone you know, needs help with intellectual property training, I can help you devise a training plan and present training to all levels in a company. To protect your valuable intellectual property rights; please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation by sending me an email or call TOLL FREE at 1-855-UR IDEAS (1-855-874-3327) and ask for Norman.
– Ex astris, scientia –
I am and avid amateur astronomer and intellectual property attorney. As a former Chief Petty Officer in the U.S. Navy, I am a proud member of the Armed Service Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association working to aid all active duty and veterans in our communities. Connect with me on Google +