Samsung Patent Infringement Case Must Stay in Texas, Caltech Tells Court

A rebuttal brief submitted by The California Institute of Technology (Caltech) opposed Samsung Electronics America Inc.’s motion to transfer venue in the software coding-related dispute. The heavily redacted filing said that Samsung’s request improperly raises the defense that it had a valid license for some of the asserted patents, and nevertheless, that the request must be rejected for failure to provide a full transfer analysis.

Caltech filed the case last December after winning a trial against Apple and Broadcom for infringement of most of the patents asserted against Samsung. The suit, filed in the Eastern District of Texas, alleged that Samsung infringed several of its coding correction patents through use of them in consumer electronics, like its computers, tablets, phones, and smart watches.

In May, Samsung answered the complaint. The company asserted various defenses including non-infringement, invalidity, and license.

Last week, the private, non-profit university in Pasadena, Calif. argued that Samsung has no right to move the case to the Central District of California. “Samsung’s motion to transfer venue is built on a series of unsupported assertions that fail to coalesce in any way to warrant its requested relief,” the filing said.

Instead, it cast the motion as half-baked and an attempt to circumvent the parties’ forum selection agreement and obtain third-party discovery to support its license defense. Caltech said the defense is not meritous, citing the file histories of the patents-in-suit and the course of conduct between Caltech and a third-party licensee. The plaintiff called Samsung’s claims to rights as a contract beneficiary “attenuated,” and said that the court should reject them as a basis for transfer. 

Caltech is represented by Susman Godfrey LLP and Samsung by Gillam & Smith LLP and Kirkland and Ellis LLP.