• ALJ Luckern Rules On Motion To Compel In Certain DC-DC Controllers (337-TA-698)
  • April 26, 2010 | Author: Eric W. Schweibenz
  • Law Firm: Oblon, Spivak, McClelland, Maier & Neustadt, L.L.P. - Alexandria Office
  • On April 13, 2010, Chief ALJ Paul J. Luckern issued the public version of Order No. 8 (dated March 26, 2010) in Certain DC-DC Controllers and Products Containing the Same (Inv. No. 337-TA-698), denying Complainants Richtek Technology Corp. and Richtek USA, Inc.’s (collectively, “Richtek”) motions to compel Respondents Advanced Microdevices Corp. (“AMD”) and uPI Semiconductor Corporation (“uPI”) to provide the “specificity” under Commission rule 210.13(b) in support of their affirmative defenses regarding invalidity and to supplement their responses to certain interrogatories relating to invalidity.

    According to the Order, AMD, uPI, and the Commission Investigative Staff opposed Richtek’s motions.

    In the Order, ALJ Luckern held that “Commission rule 210.13(b) encourages, but does not require, respondents to put [as much specificity as possible] in the response to the complaint.”  Further, ALJ Luckern distinguished two prior investigations relied upon by Richtek.  In particular, ALJ Luckern noted that the respondents in the prior investigations “made no effort to specify which references were relevant to which patent” or did not list any prior art in their affirmative defense with respect to invalidity but merely stated that “[t]he patents-in-suit are invalid because they fail to comply with the requirements of 35 U.S.C. § 101 et seq., including, without limitation, §§ 102, 103 and/or 112.”  In view of the above, ALJ Luckern denied Richtek’s motions finding that both AMD and uPI provided more detail than either of the respondents in the prior investigations, namely, that AMD and uPI  have provided certain invalidating prior art in either their interrogatory responses and/or amended responses to the complaint.  ALJ Luckern also denied Richtek’s motions on the ground that they were essentially requesting that AMD and uPI “provide most, if not all, of the specific details of respondents’ invalidity defense several weeks prior to the deadline for identifying prior art, let alone responses to contention interrogatories.”