obvIPat - Obviously Patentable

The blog for inventors, in-house counsel, & entrepreneurs.

CAFC Weekly: December 3, 2010

by Orlando Lopez

After several weeks in which there were no precedential opinions or orders related to intellectual property, the one precedential action in this week’s opinions and orders is an order transferring venue from the Eastern District of Texas to the Northern District of California.

In In re Acer America, the twelve defendants in a patent infringement action initiated by MedioStream, a California company, asked the CAFC to reverse the order of the Eastern District of Texas denying their motion for transfer of venue. MedioStream had filed suit for infringement against 12 hardware and software companies, of which only Dell is not headquartered in California. The defendants moved for transfer of venue and the District Court denied the motion since Dell is headquartered in Texas. The CAFC vacated the order of the District Court, basing their decision on Fifth Circuit law applying the factors for forum non-conveniens. One important factor was the convenience of the witnesses, most of whom were located in California. In this case, the order of the CAFC provides an example of the factors and arguments useful in requesting the CAFC to order a transfer of venue away from the Eastern District of Texas, a venue that is popular with patent holders.

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