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Apple seeks to put Motorola patent cases on hold

motorola

By Stewart Mitchell

Posted on 13 Sep 2011 at 12:26

Apple has asked a US court to put two patent dispute cases with Motorola on hold until after the sale of the handset maker to Google goes through.

Apple filed motions to stay in two of its multiple lawsuits with Motorola, arguing that the pending acquisition of Motorola by Google has resulted in "a fundamental loss of Motorola's patent rights", according to a report on legal website Foss Patents.

Apple believes that Motorola has given up any patent rights as part of the agreement, and may prefer to wait until after the merger is finalised, possibly as late as the middle of next year, to assess its position.

The two lawsuits - one brought by Apple against Motorola and the other brought by Motorola - are irrelevant now that Motorola has been sold as it may no longer have rights over the patents under discussion, Apple claimed.

"Apple should not have to face the threat of an injunction based on the claims of a party that now has no standing to bring those claims," Apple claimed in court papers, according to Foss.

Apple is also concerned that should it win the cases “it risks an attack on its victory on appeal by a third party, whether Google or another Android smartphone manufacturer, contending that the judgment should be overturned due to a lack of prudential standing".

Motorola has yet to reply to the filing.

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User comments

Typical bully!

Apple absolutely does not want to end up in the same court room as Google.

What's strange is the Apple's claim re Motorola patents being valid, or not, under Google ownership would also be true of Nortel's patents under Apple ownership ...right?

By fingerbob69 on 13 Sep 2011

If you read the FOSS article and the wording of Apple's legal request, it seem reasonably sound (to a non lawyer). What I read is that the agreement between Google and Motorola says that Motorola can't make patent settlements and the Apple-Motorola suit has to be open to settlement to be a valid lawsuit.

By milliganp on 13 Sep 2011

@fingerbob69

"Apple absolutely does not want to end up in the same court room as Google"

I think you're wrong there. Delaying the action until the purchase of Motorola is completed will then bring Google into the firing line.

As for the Nortel patents, the situation is not the same. Motorola were depending on their patents to defend themselves, but have since assigned some rights to the patents as part of the agreement for Google to purchase Motorola. Whereas Apple is not claiming any infringement of the Nortel patents by Motorola. Indeed the consortium purchase of the Nortel patents, of which Apple is a part, have not as yet obtained all the regulatory blessings to complete the purchase.

By chapelgarth on 13 Sep 2011

Erm...

"Apple believes that Motorola has given up any patent rights as part of the agreement"

True, however Google would have acquired these patent rights as part of the deal. Expect a letter in the post from Google anytime soon!

By everton2004 on 13 Sep 2011

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