Patent Owner History of Abusive Suits Mandates New Fees Look
Written July 9, 2020
The Federal Circuit on July 1, 2020, said that a Florida federal court failed to properly consider a patent owner’s history of frivolous litigation when it denied a request for attorneys’ fees from the owner’s latest target. Elec. Commc’n Techs LLC v. ShoppersChoice.com LLC, Fed. Cir., No. 19-2087, 7/1/20.
Electronic Communication Technologies LLC, sent boilerplate demand letters and sued numerous defendants, including ShoppersChoice.com, seeking quick settlements over its patent covering an automated notification system with a user option to communicate with a delivery or pickup representative.
ShoppersChoice beat the claims, and requested reimbursement for attorneys’ fees spent defending the suit, noting evidence that ECT sued at least 150 other defendants over the patent, while failing to pursue cases past the early stages.
While the Florida court denied ShoppersChoice’s motion for attorneys’ fees, the Federal Circuit remanded because the district court didn’t consider the “objective unreasonableness” of ECT’s infringement claims and failed to address other court decisions finding ECT’s claims unreasonable.