|October 7, 2013|
Previously published on October 4, 2013
On September 26, 2013, ALJ Charles E. Bullock issued the public versions of Order Nos. 65 and 66 (both dated September 13, 2013) in Certain Wireless Devices With 3G And/Or 4G Capabilities and Components Thereof (Inv. No. 337-TA-868).
According to Order No. 65, Complainants InterDigital Communications, Inc., InterDigital Technology Corporation, IPR Licensing, Inc., and InterDigital Holdings, Inc. (collectively, “InterDigital”) filed a motion to compel Respondents Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd; Samsung Electronics America, Inc., and Samsung Telecommunications America, LLC (collectively, “Samsung”) to provide certain discovery. Parts of the motion were later withdrawn leaving only a request for an additional corporate deposition regarding Deposition Topic No. 5.
InterDigital argued that it had met the requirements under Ground Rule 3.2 to provide reasonable and good faith efforts to resolve the matter with Samsung because it filed the motion the day after the relevant deposition occurred. Samsung argued that InterDigital’s motion should be denied because Interdigital had not complied with the Ground Rules. Samsung supported its arguments by stating that InterDigital did not make a good faith effort to meet and confer with Samsung, that InterDigital did not seek to extend the motion to compel deadline to allow for the meet and confer process, and that InterDigital did not seek leave to waive the Ground Rules’ requirements.
ALJ Bullock denied InterDigital’s motion for failure to comply with Ground Rules 3.2 and 3.5. InterDigital failed to comply with Ground Rule 3.2 because InterDigital did not certify that it made a reasonable good faith effort to resolve the matter, and notify all other parties about InterDigital’s intention to file the motion, at least two business days before filing the motion. Additionally, InterDigital failed to comply with Ground Rule 3.5 because InterDigital did not specifically state in its motion what the back and forth was between InterDigital and Samsung, and what the results of the conversations were. Therefore, ALJ Bullock found that InterDigital had not provided sufficient information to show that it had made good faith efforts to resolve the underlying dispute.
According to Order No. 66, InterDigital filed a motion to preclude Samsung from making certain non-infringement arguments, or, in the alternative, seeking an order compelling additional discovery from Samsung. InterDigital argued that Samsung should be precluded from offering certain non-infringement evidence, while allowing InterDigital to present infringement evidence. In the alternative, InterDigital sought to compel Samsung to supplement its response to InterDigital’s Interrogatory No. 4 to identify all Samsung wireless devices with 3G and/or 4G capabilities that have been, are planned to be, or are likely to be imported during the pendency of this investigation. Additionally InterDigital sought to compel the production of documents and source code responsive to InterDigital’s Production Requests, and to modify the procedural schedule deadlines to allow for additional fact discovery and another deposition. InterDigital also argued that Samsung should be sanctioned because Samsung had not conducted “reasonable” inquiries before responding to InterDigital’s discovery requests.
Samsung opposed the motion by arguing that it had conducted reasonable inquires when it responded to InterDigital’s discovery. Samsung pointed out that it had supplemented its response to Interrogatory No. 4 nine times and had informed InterDigital about products that would be imported for sale once it had confirmed the importation information. Additionally, Samsung argued that InterDigital had not complied with Ground Rule 4.1.1 because it had not demonstrated that the Discovery Committee had reached an impasse regarding discovery requests.
ALJ Bullock denied the request for sanctions finding that InterDigital had failed to show that Samsung’s supplementation of its response to Interrogatory No. 4 was unreasonable. Additionally, ALJ Bullock denied InterDigital’s request for an order compelling Samsung to provide additional documents for failure to comply with Ground Rule 4.1.1. ALJ Bullock found that the Discovery Committee Report from three days after the motion was filed did not demonstrate that that the Discovery Committee had reviewed the discovery at issue and was at an impasse. ALJ Bullock further explained that even if InterDigital had complied with Ground Rule 4.1.1., the motion would still be denied because InterDigital had failed to show how Samsung’s responses to Interrogatory No. 4 and production requests were deficient.