Our group has specialists in many areas, including biochemistry, pharmaceuticals, chemistry, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, genetics, medical and biomedical products, telecommunications, computer software and business methods. Our lawyers handle patent cases of all types and sizes. Whether we are protecting a maturing company’s latest innovations, representing multiple defendants against infringement charges by a nonpracticing entity or undertaking high-stakes, mission-critical patent litigation, our team is prepared to serve you.
Alston & Bird ranked 8th in the Federal District Court representation with 60 cases in Corporate Counsel’s annual Patent Litigation Survey. We have appeared on this prestigious list since the early 2000s. (October 2015, October 2014, November 2013)
The International Legal Alliance Summit & Awards awarded Alston & Bird the honor of “Best USA IP Firm: Patent Litigation” (June 2015). Previously, Alston & Bird has been honored with a Gold Award in the category of U.S. Patent Litigation Firm of the Year and two Silver Awards in the categories of U.S. IP Patent Prosecution Firm and U.S. Global Strategy (June 2013). Recognized firms were nominated based on suggestions by members of a panel jury and international rankings.
- Currently serve as lead counsel for Nokia Corporation against InterDigital in a Federal Circuit Appeal and in various other investigations at the ITC. The appeal concerns an earlier favorable verdict for client Nokia in the Matter of Certain 3G Mobile Handsets and Components, Investigation No. 337-TA-613. This investigation was regarding four patents asserted by InterDigital against Nokia: U.S. Patent Nos. 7,117,004; 7,190,966; 7,286,847; and 6,973,579. In addition to the Federal Circuit appeal, InterDigital has filed a retaliatory USITC action—Certain Wireless Devices with 3G Capabilities and Components Thereof, Investigation No. 337-TA-800. Notice of this investigation against Nokia by InterDigital was served on our team on August 25, 2011. This investigation relates to seven patents asserted by InterDigital against Nokia. This matter is ongoing.
- In June of 2011, Alston & Bird achieved a favorable settlement for our client Nokia against Apple in four ITC proceedings and several patent litigation cases pending in federal courts in Delaware and Wisconsin. The patents-in-suit, totaling 47 U.S. patents and more internationally, covered smartphone and touch screen technology. The disputes drew extensive press coverage, being dubbed by one publication as the “smartphone smackdown.”
- Currently serve as lead counsel in patent disputes for Dell, Inc., in many of the key patent jurisdictions in the United States. The following cases are just a sampling of matters being handled, or that have recently been concluded: MOSAID Technologies Inc. v. Dell, Inc. et al., Case No. 2:11-cv-00179-DF (E.D. Tex.); Optimum Power Solutions LLC v. Dell Inc., Case No. 6:11-cv-00505 (E.D. Tex.); Semiconductor Ideas To The Market BV v. Texas Instruments Incorporated et al., Case No. 1:11-cv-00451-DF (E.D. Tex.); Big Baboon Corporation v. Dell, Inc., Case No. 2:09-cv-01198-SVW (C.D. Cal.); WiAV Networks, LLC v. Dell, Inc. et al., Case No. 3:11-cv-02352-M (N.D. Tex.)
- Currently representing Southwire Company in the case Southwire Company v. Encore Wire Corporation et al., Civil Action No. 06:10-cv-00330-LED (E.D. TX). This case was filed the day after the two defendants filed separate declaratory judgment actions against Southwire in the Northern District of Georgia. The actions have recently been consolidated and transferred to Georgia. The two consolidated cases include: Encore Wire Corporation v. Southwire Company, Civil Action No. 03:10-cv-00086-BMGL (N.D. GA); and Cerro Wire Inc. v. Southwire Company, Civil Action No. 03:10-cv-00087-BMGL (N.D. GA).
- Prior to settlement in December 2011, we served as lead counsel in all related district court and ITC litigation for Navico, Inc., a leading provider of underwater sonar technology in the marine navigation industry. The following cases are matters being handled, or that have recently been concluded for Navico: Raymarine Inc et al v. American GNC Corp., Case No. 2:10-cv-08077-DSF (C.D. Cal.); Taranis IP LLC v. Garmin International, Inc. et al., Case No. 1:10-cv-07502 (N.D. IL.); Johnson Outdoors Inc, et al v. Navico, Inc., Case No. 2:10-cv-00067-WKW (M.D. AL); and Certain Components for Installation of Marine Autopilots with GPS or IMU, USITC Investigation No. 337-TA-738.
- In July 2009, a group of our intellectual property litigators, working in tandem with our patent prosecution team, obtained a victory with the grant of summary judgment of noninfringement for our client UPS. The case, brought by WNS Holdings LLP, accused UPS of infringing two patents relating to aircraft collision avoidance technology. Our team obtained key admissions during discovery that produced this favorable result. WNS Holdings, LLC et al v. United Parcel Service, Inc., Civil Action No. 3:08-cv-00275, W.D.WI. (Crabb, B.). In addition, following oral arguments at the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, the decision in UPS' favor—summary judgment of noninfringement—was affirmed.
- In June of 2011, two veterinary pharmaceutical companies were found in violation of a court order barring them from infringing our client Merial Ltd.’s patent covering Frontline Plus, a successful flea and tick repellent for pets. The ruling judge found Cipla Ltd., based in India, in contempt of a March 2008 default judgment; he also held that Velcera Inc. acted in concert with the offending company. An injunction was issued against Cipla, and any parties in concert with it, keeping it from making, selling or importing in the United States any veterinary products containing the active ingredients cited in the patent. BASF Agro BV et al. v. Cipla Ltd. et al., Case No. 3:07-cv-00125, N.D.GA. (Land, C. D.).
- We are currently defending Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products LLC against a number of defendant/respondents to prevent infringing knock-off paper towel dispensers that are potentially made in numerous countries. After conducting discovery with regard to the named defendants and respondents, and researching other information concerning the industry as a whole and other paper towel dispensers that were not included in the litigation, we moved for summary determination that a domestic industry exists and that there had been violations of Section 337 by certain respondents. We also requested that the administrative law judge (ALJ) recommend entry of a general exclusion order. In July of 2011, the ALJ granted that motion and requested that the ITC enter a general exclusion order banning all infringing products from importation into the United States. Certain Electronic Paper Towel Dispensing Devices and Components Thereof, Inv. No. 337-TA-718
- We were brought in following trial to assist our client Eastman Kodak Co. through the administrative appeals process within the ITC to obtain reversal of an initial determination of no violation in Kodak’s offensive case against Apple and RIM, and to preserve an initial determination of no violation in Apple’s retaliatory case against Kodak. In the Matter of Certain Mobile Phones and Wireless Communications Devices including Digital Cameras, Inv. No. 337-TA-703; and In the Matter of Digital Imaging Devices and Related Software, Inv. No. 337-TA-717. The former case is still under review; the latter case was affirmed in Kodak’s favor.
- In August of 2010, we represented appellant Merial in its appeal to the Federal Circuit from summary judgment of noninfringement concerning a porcine vaccine for Postweaning Multisystemic Wasting Syndrome. Our efforts resulted in the reversal of the claim construction and the summary judgment of noninfringement being vacated, and the case was remanded to determine infringement under the new, correct claim construction. Intervet, Inc. v. Merial Ltd. (No. 2009-1568, August 4, 2010).
- We represented ESAB before the ITC in this investigation brought by Lincoln Electric Company. The case involved bulk weld wire packaged by ESAB in Mexico and China. In July 2010, the ALJ ruled favorably towards the respondents, including our client ESAB. In re Certain Welding Bulk Welding Wire Containers and Components Thereof and Welding Wire, USITC Investigation No. 337-TA-686 (Judge Rogers).
- We represented AGA Medical Corporation against Medtronic Inc. Medtronic accused AGA's innovative and life-saving products of infringing three patents that Medtronic alleged to cover expandable medical devices made of Nitinol, and methods for using Nitinol devices. Medtronic had previously asserted its patents against many other medical device makers, all of whom had taken licenses. In this case, the court granted AGA Medical's motion for summary judgment of noninfringement, thus ending Medtronic's infringement claim under one patent and ending a portion of its infringement claim under a second patent. The court also granted AGA's motion to preclude Medtronic from recovering pre-suit damages on its product claims. As to the remaining patents, the case proceeded to a six-week jury trial in July 2009 on issues of alleged infringement and validity over prior art, and later, to a 10-day bench trial in December 2009 concerning the issue of whether the product patent claims are invalid for double patenting. (No defendant previously sued by Medtronic had asserted invalidity based on double patenting). Shortly after the conclusion of the bench trial on double patenting, but before any ruling by the court, Medtronic entered into a settlement agreement with AGA that gives AGA complete freedom to continue its activities without concern as to infringement liability. Medtronic, Inc. v. AGA Medical Corporation, Case No. 3:2007-CV-00567 (N.D. Cal.).