District Court Litigation

Sterne Kessler's trial lawyers have led more than 150 district court cases over the past five years, and are active in all of the busiest jurisdictions around the country, including the District of Delaware, District of New Jersey, Eastern District of Virginia, Eastern District of Texas, and Northern and Central Districts of California.

Our wins cover a broad range of IP and products—from golf clubs, to liquid crystal displays, to software, to prescription pharmaceuticals. Our integrated litigation teams are well positioned to achieve positive outcomes efficiently. We begin with the end in mind—identifying winning issues and themes at the outset; focusing our efforts on those issues; and avoiding tangential issues that waste time and money. We provide early and ongoing analysis of the relevant patents, prior art, and products involved. We also formulate strong positions on invalidity, non-infringement, and claim construction at the outset of the litigation, ensuring that our tactics are focused on winning. Sterne Kessler’s Trial & Appellate Practice has experience in a wide range of technologies, including biologics, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, electronics, communications, software, semiconductors, complex mechanical systems, and consumer products.

Our Competitive Advantage

We have a distinctive advantage in IP litigation—we successfully integrate a team of winning trial lawyers with Sterne Kessler’s unmatched technical depth and patent expertise. Our trial teams draw on the technical knowledge available through our team of lawyers, patent agents, and technical specialists with 100+ advanced technical degrees, including 60+ Ph.D.s in science and engineering. That competitive advantage is amplified by the fact that Sterne Kessler has one of the most accomplished Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) litigation practices in the country. With patent validity often contested at the PTAB, in addition to district court, it is imperative to have a litigation team that can win across venues. Sterne Kessler’s ability to coordinate positions and to work efficiently across multiple venues, dramatically improves the odds of achieving a favorable outcome at the PTAB, at trial in district court, or via settlement. Sterne Kessler’s Trial & Appellate Practice is a leader across all patent litigation venues in the U.S.district courts, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), the USPTO’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), and the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Our trial teams are particularly adept at coordinating actions across multiple venues, when a multi-venue strategy can create highly favorable outcomes for clients.

Representative Cases

Recent cases underscore the effectiveness and diversity of our district court litigation practice.
  • PureCircle v. Sweegen (C.D. Cal.) – Earned a victory regarding a natural non-caloric sweetener used in food and drinks. Court granted motion for Summary Judgment of invalidity, holding all claims of two patents invalid for inadequate written description, and further holding certain claims of each patent invalid for claiming ineligible subject matter. Affirmed by the Federal Circuit on appeal.
  • EscapeX v. Block, Inc. (S.D.N.Y.) – Successfully defended Block in a litigation involving a patent related to updating media content on a user device. The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York granted Block’s motion to dismiss on subject-matter eligibility grounds and dismissed the case with prejudice.
  • Vanda Pharmaceuticals Inc. v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. (D. Del.) – Represented Teva in Hatch-Waxman litigation relating to Hetlioz®, a treatment for non-24-hour sleep–wake disorder. Invalidated all claims at trial. Affirmed by the Federal Circuit on appeal.
  • Corcept Therapeutics, Inc. v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. (D. N.J.) Represented Teva in Hatch-Waxman litigation relating to Korlym®, which treats hyperglycemia in patients with Cushing’s syndrome. Obtained judgment of no induced infringement on all asserted claims. Appeal pending.
  • MiiCs & Partners America, LLC et al. v. Funai Electric Co., Ltd. et al. (D. Del.) – Narrowed a 10-patent case down to 2 patents through use of IPRs and summary-judgment motions. Precluded plaintiff’s damages expert from testifying as to one of the two remaining patents, which led to a stipulated final judgment in Funai’s favor.
  • Allergan, Inc. v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc. (E.D. Tex.) – On behalf of Teva, successfully invalidated all patents in suit following a bench trial. The drug at issue in the case – Restasis® – generates about $1.4 billion in annual revenues for Allergan. During the case, Allergan transferred the patents to the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe, which asserted tribal sovereign immunity as a defense to parallel PTAB actions.  We overcame that defense and obtained unpatentability rulings from the PTAB.
  • Intellectual Capital Consulting, Ltd., v. Audi AG Audi of America, LLC, Audi Of America, Inc., Volkswagen Ag, and Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (E.D. Tex.) – Case favorably dismissed based largely on a successful pocket IPR strategy (i.e., the threat of invalidation at the PTAB led plaintiff to dismiss the case).
  • Warner Chilcott (US) LLC v. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc. (E.D. Tex.) – Secured a summary judgment ruling of noninfringement in the Delzicol® ANDA litigation. A summary judgment win is unusual both in the ANDA litigation context and in the Eastern District of Texas.

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Speaking Engagement

March 5, 2024 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM PST

The 2024 Sedona Conference on Global Intellectual Property Litigation