Federal Circuit Vacates $440,000 Attorneys’ Fees Award in Patent Dispute

    On December 27, 2019, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) vacated and remanded a case in the U.S District Court for the District of Delaware after plaintiff Intellectual Ventures LLC appealed the district court’s ruling that awarded defendant Trend Micro Inc. $444,051.14 in attorneys’ fees.

    The district court awarded attorneys’ fees to Trend Micro after declaring the patent case exceptional solely with respect to “the circumstances surrounding Intellectual Ventures’ expert’s changed opinion.” CAFC ruled that “a finding of an exceptional case—not a finding of an exceptional portion of a case” is required to support an award of partial fees, and remanded the case to the district court to consider “whether the circumstances surrounding the expert’s changed testimony render the case exceptional” under section 285 of U.S. Code Title 35.

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