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Wiley Rein Client Openet Prevails in Section 101 Ruling Against Amdocs in a Key Patent Case
On Friday, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia (EDVA) granted judgment on the pleadings in favor of client Openet— Ireland’s largest privately held software company—finding that four data processing patents held by Israeli rival Amdocs were invalid in view of the Supreme Court’s June 2014 decision in Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank Int’l. The four patents related to processing network accounting records generated by telecommunications networks. This case was notable because it was the first Section 101 ruling in the EDVA, one of the most important patent litigation venues in the United States, since the Alice decision.
Openet filed its motion for judgment on the pleadings on September 26, 2014, and the court heard oral argument on October 16, 2014. Living up to its reputation as one of the preeminent Rocket Dockets in the United States, judgment was entered in favor of Openet barely one week later, on October 24, 2014. Wiley Rein partner Brian H. Pandya argued the winning motion for Openet.
James H. Wallace Jr., chair of WileyRein’s Patent Group, and Mr. Pandya have led the Wiley Rein legal team on behalf of Openet in Amdocs (Israel) Limited v. Openet Telecom, Inc., et. al. since this long-running battle between Amdocs and Openet began in 2010. Other key members of the litigation team include partners Eric H. Weisblatt and Scott A. Felder and associates Karin A. Hessler and Claire Frezza, each of whom made significant and valuable contributions to the winning strategy and briefing.
Openet and Amdocs both provide data processing software to telecommunications companies. On August 16, 2010, Amdocs filed suit alleging that Openet infringed two of its U.S. patents and sought money damages and an injunction against the sale of certain Openet products. In 2011, two additional Amdocs patents were added to the case. Judge Leonie M. Brinkema entered summary judgment in January 2013 that none of the accused Openet products infringed the four asserted patents. Although that ruling was reversed in part by the Federal Circuit, while the case was on appeal the Supreme Court issued its ruling in the Alice case. The Wiley Rein team recognized the importance of this Supreme Court decision and promptly moved to dismiss the case on the pleadings in light of this change in the law.
Wiley Rein’s Intellectual Property Practice group offers services for owners and users of patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets, with a strategic focus on new technologies and dedicated specialists in each of these areas. The firm is known specifically for its infringement litigation capabilities, its public policy advocacy, its licensing expertise, its analysis and valuation of intellectual property assets, and its dealings with relevant government agencies.