Apple v. Samsung: Redux for Juror Misconduct?

The ongoing intellectual property litigation between Apple and Samsung continues to make headlines months after the blockbuster verdict was announced.  Samsung is seeking a new trial on the basis of juror misconduct.

Samsung alleges that the foreman of the jury that awarded Apple $1.05 billion in damages failed to disclose his involvement in two legal matters—a personal bankruptcy in 1993 and a lawsuit by his former employer, Seagate Technology Inc. According to court documents, Samsung has a “substantial strategic relationship” with Seagate and the lawyer who filed the complaint against juror Velvin Hogan is married to an attorney employed by the firm representing Samsung in its current IP litigation with Apple.

“Mr. Hogan’s failure to disclose the Seagate suit raises issues of bias that Samsung should have been allowed to explore,” Samsung argued in support of a new trial. The company also suggested that the juror failed to disclose the lawsuits in an effort to “secure a seat on the jury.”

Even if the juror was not entirely truthful, Samsung will likely have a difficult time proving bias. Federal courts have routinely held that not all juror biases adversely affect a litigant’s right to a fair trial.

Under the Supreme Court’s two-prong test, “[T]o obtain a new trial in such a situation, a party must first demonstrate that a juror failed to answer honestly a material question on voir dire, and then further show that a correct response would have provided a valid basis for a challenge for cause.” Here, Hogan maintains that he was only asked to disclose his involvement in any litigation within the past ten years and that both matters occurred outside of the specified time period, according to a Bloomberg report.

How Can I Help?

As this case highlights, many IP cases do not end with a jury verdict. Through post-trial motions and the appeals process, litigants can continue to challenge prior rulings and, in some cases, ultimately prevail.

If you need help to protect or patent your ideas, or know someone that can use my help, please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at nvantreeck@usip.com 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 +

Norman

Should the U.S. Let Experts Go “Hot Tubbing?”

The ongoing patent litigation between Apple and Samsung is not confined to the United States.  Similar legal battles are simultaneously taking place all over the world in Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom, and Australia, just to name a few.

These lawsuits provide a unique glimpse into the legal systems of other countries, particularly how they deal with complex intellectual property disputes. For instance, Australia’s expert process has caught the attention of many here in the United States.

The popular term for Australia’s method of expert testimony—the hot tub approach—may have a lot to do with the buzz surrounding it. But it is also credited with saving both time and expense and, most importantly, making complicated cases easier to understand for judges and juries.

The hot tub method, formally called concurrent evidence, allows expert witnesses to offer their opinions in the form of a discussion, as opposed to taking the stand one by one. It is also employed by courts in Europe and Asia.

Proponents of the hot tub approach not only tout its efficiency, but also argue that it leads to better evidence because experts can be questioned by their peers rather than exclusively by attorneys. Advocates also maintain that the approach often leads to more open and frank discussions between experts for both sides during which they can often find common ground and/or focus their attention on the most contentious issues.

At this point, there is no great movement to adopt “hot tubbing” here in the U.S., where the process of cross-examination is used almost exclusively to examine expert witness. However, it may warrant consideration given the increasing complexity of IP disputes.

How Can I Help?

If you, or someone you know, needs help with intellectual property lawsuit, I can help you evaluate your case and help plan a strategy for litigation.  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 +

Norman

Slow Down There Big Boys!

Apple and Samsung have been ordered by U.S. District Judge Lucy H. Koh to narrow their patent-infringement lawsuit case scheduled for trial in 2014.

The Judge told lawyers from both companies that they must “focus and streamline” their cases to 25 patent claims, or elements of the patents at issue, and 25 accused products.

Koh stated that  “You’ve already been litigating this thing for a year; you must know something about what’s your best case.”

In yet another round of squabbling, Apple filed a motion to include Samsung’s Galaxy Note smartphones and tablet computer in the case. Samsung retaliated by claimed “all generations” of Apple’s iPhone and iPads infringe at least three of its patents.

Koh last month rejected Apple’s request to add additional damages to the first patent-infringement case between the two companies in San Jose. In that case, a jury awarded Apple $1.05 billion, finding that Samsung infringed six of the Apple’s patents.  However, that verdict is being disputed by Samsung due to various problems with the jury and other procedural issues.

I have to note that Apple has sued Samsung everywhere else in the world and, for the most part, lost all those cases except the one filed in their own backyard.  Apple even got into trouble in England when they did not place a court ordered apology on their UK website.  The court was so unhappy that they made Apple pick up Samsung’s legal fees for the affair.

At some point the “Big Boys” will have to grow up and do a deal that will make both their shareholders breathe easier.  If this continues on too much longer, the litigation will start to affect the bottom line of both companies.

One can only hope for a little common sense, but, alas, I haven’t seen any sign of it yet.

How Can I Help?

If you need help protecting your patented idea in the United States or around the world, or know someone that can use my help, 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 +

Norman

More Bad News for Apple.

The U.S. Court of Appeals of Friday overturned an injunction banning sales of Samsung’s Galaxy Nexus smartphone.  The injunction that was ordered in June by a California district court was, according to the Court of Appeals, an unlawful “abuse” of the court’s discretion.

Source

This follows last weeks Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet sales ban being lifted, in a related case in the ongoing legal wrangling between tech giants Apple and Samsung.

In August, a jury awarded Apple $1.5 billion against Samsung. The jury decided that Samsung had infringed seven Apple owned patents, mostly design patents.  Samsung has already demanded a retrial for the $1.5 Billion jury decision based on issues including jury misconduct.

In an odd twist of biting the hand that feeds you, Samsung manufactures more than a quarter of the parts in the Apple iPad and Apple iPhone, including the Retina(r) display.  But Apple, especially the late Steve Jobs, did not like the fact that Samsung also competes with Apple with their Android smartphones and tablets.

Here’s the text of the ruling.

If you need help to file a patent, copyright or trademark, or need help with a patent, copyright or trademark infringement issue, or know someone that can use my help, please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at nvantreeck@usip.com 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 +

Norman

Are Emoticons Patentable?

There is an ongoing patent dispute between Apple and Samsung Electronics, even after the latest verdict. The lawsuits span the globe and cover a number of cell phone and tablet technologies.

The subject of the latest dispute made us smile—and by that we mean :-). Yes, you guessed it. The smartphone rivals are reportedly now locked in a patent dispute over emoticons. }:-(.

As reported by the Los Angeles Times, Samsung owns a patent on smartphone use of emoticons. In fact, a patent for an “emoticon input method for mobile terminals” was granted in Europe way back in 2000.

In the latest lawsuit, Samsung is challenging the way in which iPhones enter emoticons on the handset’s screen. As detailed by the LA Times, Samsung specifically alleges that the iPhone’s Japanese emoticon keyboard infringes on its patent. When users activate the Japanese keyboard, they also activate an emoticon menu and, with one touch, can add multiple complex emoticons.

While the subject of the latest patent lawsuit is amusing :o, it will likely have serious consequences in this growing patent war, and that makes us a bit sad 😦

If you need help to protect your ideas 😉 , or know someone that can use my help ()-(), please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at nvantreeck@usip.com 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 +

Norman