Universal Instruments wins patent trial in Texas
Apr 14, 2005
In a victory against abusive patent litigation, a Texas court has entered final judgement in favor of Universal Instruments Corporation, a subsidiary of Dover Corporation, following a three-week jury trial in Houston.
All 17 claims of the asserted software patent were found invalid and not infringed.
Judge Lee H. Rosenthal announced the judgment on March 25. The suit, filed in 2002, is one of an increasing number of patent cases that high-tech companies are facing brought by companies or individuals whose primary business model is licensing and litigation of patent assets-typically, with the assistance of contingency fee lawyers. In the Universal case, the plaintiffs alleged that Universal's flagship GSMÂ® Platform for surface mount placement of components on printed circuit boards (that are used in computers, cell phones, and other electronic devices) infringed U.S. Patent 5,283,943.
The plaintiffs in the case have waived their right to appeal in return for Universal's agreement not to seek costs or attorney fees. "Universal Instruments made a decision three years ago to take a stand and defend against this growing problem" said Patrick J. Gillard, Universal's Chief Financial Officer. "The jury's verdict and the Court's judgment are a resounding vindication of that decision."