Apple Counters Samsung’s Request to Halt Damages Retrial

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Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has filed its opposition to Samsung’s (SSNLF.PK) latest motion to stay the Apple v. Samsung damages retrial, Foss Patents reports. Samsung made its request on Wednesday, the first day of jury deliberations in the trial. Samsung’s request to end the current trial is based on a recent decision by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office that rejected all of the claims in Apple’s “pinch-to-zoom” patent.

The pinch-to-zoom patent is the only patent that Apple can seek lost profit damages on from Samsung after Judge Lucy Koh excluded the other four patents in dispute in the trial. However, Apple can still use all five patents for other types of damages claims besides lost profits.

Based on the USPTO’s recent decision regarding the pinch-to-zoom patent, Samsung has requested that Koh halt the current trial proceedings. “This PTO decision calls into question the entire jury verdict in this trial,” Samsung wrote in its filing, provided by Foss Patents.

The publication reports that Apple filed its opposition to Samsung’s request later that same day. Apple wrote that “Samsung’s strategy to delay entry of final judgment in this case has crossed the bounds of reason.” The iPhone maker also noted that, contrary to Samsung’s claims, the USPTO’s “reexamination proceedings on Apple’s ’915 [pinch-to-zoom] patent are not final.”

Apple said, “Since the 2012 verdict, Samsung has continually attempted to delay a final resolution of this action.” Samsung made a similar attempt in July to get the current trial postponed based on a USPTO reexamination decision made on Apple’s “rubber-banding” patent that covers a particular scrolling method on touch screens. Koh denied that request after the USPTO reversed its preliminary rejection of the patent. Apple noted that it will also likely win a similar appeal against the USPTO’s recent decision on the pinch-to-zoom patent.

Samsung’s lawyer asked for the trial to be invalidated on Tuesday after he accused Apple of “appealing to race” when Apple’s attorney described how American television manufacturers were driven out of business by foreign companies that stole their intellectual property, reports Bloomberg. Apple’s lawyer, Harold McElhinny, denied making a racist statement. “I did not say a word about race, and I did not say Asian,” McElhinny said, per Bloomberg. Koh ultimately denied Samsung’s request after she said she didn’t believe that Apple’s argument was racist.

The ongoing limited damages retrial is a continuation of last year’s Apple v. Samsung patent-infringement case. In that trial, a jury found that 26 Samsung products infringed on Apple’s patents and awarded the Cupertino, California-based company $1.05 billion in damages. Koh reduced that amount by $400 million due to jury error. The current trial is supposed to determine Apple’s damages award for 13 remaining Samsung products that were found to be infringing on five of Apple’s patents.

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