June 19, 2019
In December 2018, Latham achieved an important trial victory for Adobe in the Eastern District of Virginia which was reinforced on June 18, 2019. After adverse summary judgment rulings and just months before trial, Adobe Inc. hired Latham to defend against allegations by Plaintiff TecSec Inc. (TecSec) that certain Acrobat products infringed four U.S. patents. The Court heard Adobe’s Rule 50(a) motions for judgment as a matter of law and granted Adobe’s motions that (1) TecSec was not entitled to six years of pre-suit damages because it had failed to mark its products as required by 35 U.S.C. § 287(a), and (2) any infringement was not willful and was not the type of case that would permit enhanced damages.
When the client transferred this case to Latham, it was facing potential liability of up to US$150 million. After a six-day jury trial, the jury deliberated for two days on the issues of patent ownership, infringement, invalidity, and damages. While the jury ultimately found direct infringement and validity, it found in favor of Adobe on induced infringement and only awarded damages of US$1.75 million (for direct infringement), slightly more than 1% of what TecSec was seeking when Latham took on the case. Through successful pretrial motions, witness examinations, and trial rulings, Latham reduced the client’s exposure substantially and had a record that allowed us to argue that no direct infringement damages are supported by the evidence. Judge O’Grady agreed and vacated the jury’s damages award on June 18, 2019, marking a huge victory for Adobe.
The Latham team was led by partners Tara D. Elliott, Michael Morin, Max Grant, counsel Rachel Weiner Cohen, and associates Dale Chang, Brett Sandford, and Will Orlady