Following a 2014 verdict, courts may now punish patent trolls with the defense costs that their litigation incurs. An appeals court has now upheld an attorney fees ruling handed to Lumen View, a company that makes nothing of value, yet behaved as if it owned the abstract concept of matchmaking.
The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit decided, however, that the $300k awarded was too high, and returned the case to district court for another hearing. Joe Mullin writes:
In Friday's decision, the appeals judges agreed with Cote that Lumen View was out of line.
"Even if Lumen View's litigation conduct was not quite sanctionable, the court reasonably determined that the case was exceptional," wrote US Circuit Judge Alan Lourie on behalf of a unanimous panel. "The allegations of infringement were ill-supported, particularly in light of the parties' communications and the proposed claim constructions, and thus the lawsuit appears to have been baseless."
However, the judges found that Cote overstepped when she doubled the fees against Lumen View.