Samsung Asks SCOTUS to Hear Appeal of 2012 Apple Patent Ruling
Samsung will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its appeal of a federal jury’s 2012 ruling that it infringed Apple’s (AAPL) mobile device intellectual property to the tune of $550 million in damages.
The Korean manufacturer filed court paperwork last week indicating that it will shelve its disputes with Apple to ask the Supreme Court to make the ultimate determination if it violated Apple’s patents to build its own lineup of mobile devices, the San Jose Mercury News reported. The Court could decide by the end of its term next June if it will hear the case, the report said.
“The questions present issues of enormous importance to patent litigation and the scope of innovation, especially in high-technology industries,” Samsung’s legal team wrote, the report said.
Two weeks ago, the U.S. Federal Circuit Court of Appeals denied Samsung’s request for a new trial to again contest that nearly two dozen of its older products violated Apple’s design patents. Samsung had asked for an en banc, or full 12-member, rehearing of its case by the Federal Circuit court but the Washington, D.C.-based appeals court turned aside the company’s request.
In denying Samsung a new trial, the court left the Korean manufacturer with only two choices–either pay the fine or escalate the case to the Supreme Court. Apparently, the company has opted for the latter.
“For decades, we have invested heavily in developing revolutionary innovations in the mobile industry and beyond,” Samsung said at the time. “We are confident that our products do not infringe on Apple’s design patents, and we will continue to take appropriate measures to protect our products and our intellectual property.”.
Last May, a federal appeals court overturned about 40 percent of the $930 million a jury awarded Apple in 2012 resulting from the first of two high-profile, titanic legal battles between the iPhone maker and the Korean device maker spanning nearly two years. About $550 million of the award was left intact.
Apple still can make a play to recover the thrown out damages if it tries for a retrial on the damages portion of the case. So far the iPhone maker has not signaled its intentions.
A who’s who of Silicon Valley-headquartered IT heavyweights, including Google (GOOG), Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), Facebook (FB) and Ebay (EBAY) along with Dell and others in early July petitioned a federal appeals court to review its decision ordering Samsung to repay profits gained from infringing on the iPhone maker’s patents.
The group filed an amicus brief, or “friend of the court” on July 1 with the U.S. Federal Circuit Court of Appeals arguing that its ruling could spark a barrage of lawsuits and choke innovation, resulting in fewer device choices for consumers. It will be interesting to see if they follow suit with SCOTUS, should the high court take Samsung’s case under review.