Patent office issues final rejection of NTP patent in BlackBerry dispute

[JURIST] The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) [official website] announced Wednesday that one of the five NTP patents that a court found was infringed upon by Research In Motion's (RIM) [corporate wesbsite], manufacturer of the BlackBerry [product website] wireless device, has been found invalid on final review [RIM press release]. NTP successfully sued RIM in November of 2002 on claims that the BlackBerry hand-held internet and email device infringed on five of its patents. NTP won a $23 million judgment and an injunction - ultimately stayed upon appeal - prohibiting RIM from selling BlackBerrys in the US. The USPTO's final rejection of NTP's patent is the first major victory for RIM in a legal battle that has waged on for nearly five years. NTP can appeal the ruling. The USPTO had previously issued non-final rulings against NTP on four of its five claimed patents.

RIM had claimed that because its main e-mail switching facility was located in Canada, the company was not subject to US patent laws. A federal appeals court held otherwise and the US Supreme Court denied certiorari [JURIST report]. On Friday a federal judge is scheduled to hear arguments [JURIST report] on whether NTP's request for shutdown of the Blackberry service should be granted. CNET has more.

 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.