Judge Andrews denies motion for JMOL and motion for new trial; grants motion for other post-trial relief

In a recent Memorandum Opinion Judge Richard G. Andrews denied defendants’ motion for judgment as a matter of law on non-infringement and damages, and motion for a new a trial. Comcast IP Holdings I, LLC v.  Sprint Communication Co., C.A. No. 12-205-RGA (D. Del. Aug. 10, 2015). As to the motion for JMOL, defendants’ first argued that “the jury’s verdict rendered three terms in the three asserted claims of the ‘008 patent superfluous, ‘call destination,’ ‘identifier of a second party,’ and ‘second party.’”  Id. at 5. Judge Andrews found, however, that there was substantial evidence to support the jury’s determination that each of these limitations was met. See id. at 5-10.  Judge Andrews also found that sufficient evidence “was offered for a jury to determine that the accused [technology] infringed the asserted claims of the ‘916 and ‘046 patent.”  Id. at 10. As to these patents, Judge Andrews observed that there was sufficient evidence “to find that the ‘parsing’ limitation has been met, particularly when considering [plaintiff’s expert’s] testimony.” Id. at 11. As to the damages award, Judge Andrews explained that plaintiff’s expert’s analysis “was not a ‘black box’ as Defendants argue, nor did she provide ‘no explanation’ for how she reached her figures.” Id. at 13. Judge Andrews observed that “Defendants are correct that [the expert] did not offer a mathematical formula for her result,” but “[t]hat does not mean that her opinion was not based on a sound methodology. The hypothetical negotiation to determine a reasonable royalty can involve some approximation.” Id. at 14. Judge Andrews further noted that “[t]he lack of a mathematical formula, when there is other analysis, cannot, alone, be grounds for excluding [the expert’s] methodology.” Id. at 14. Judge Andrews also denied defendants’ motion for a new trial, unpersuaded by defendants’ arguments as to the weight of the evidence and that plaintiff’s experts exceeded the scope of their reports. Id. at 16-17.

As to plaintiff’s motion for post-trial relief, Judge Andrews granted plaintiff nearly $1.7 dollars in prejudgment interest. Id. at 20.  The parties disagreed about whether prejudgment interest should be assessed from the time of the hypothetical negotiation in late 2006 or whether it should be calculated from the time of first infringement of each patent until judgment.” Id. at 18. Considering that each of the three asserted patents was found infringed, Judge Andrews determined that “the measure of damages must be from the time of the hypothetical negotiation to trial for all the asserted patents.” Id. at 18. Moreover, Judge Andrews found that “that the appropriate interest rate is the prime rate, compounded quarterly.” Id. at 20. Judge Andrews also granted post-judgment interest. Id. Judge Andrews finally found that plaintiff is entitled to an ongoing royalty, and granted plaintiff’ request for mediation to that end.  Id. at 21-22.  

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