On Tuesday, United States District Choose Richard G. Andrews from the District of Delaware filed an opinion granting partially defendant SynKloud’s movement to dismiss. The movement got here after Microsoft filed a complaint in January searching for declaratory judgment of non-infringement for eleven patents. SynKloud moved to dismiss the grievance for lack of subject material jurisdiction and standing, in addition to failure to state a declare.
SynKloud claimed that this courtroom lacks subject material jurisdiction “as a result of Microsoft has not alleged any affirmative acts towards it by SynKloud, Microsoft has not alleged any indemnity obligation to its buyer – HP – that SynKloud has sued, Microsoft’s references to Adobe and Dropbox litigations unrelated to Microsoft’s merchandise must be disregarded, and Microsoft has not alleged a dispute based mostly on any infringement legal responsibility because it has asserted patents her not asserted by SynKloud towards HP, Adobe, or Dropbox.”
The decide wrote that in declaratory judgment actions, the plaintiff should present that “‘a case of precise controversy’ exists to ascertain subject material jurisdiction adequate to take care of an motion in federal courtroom.” The courtroom discovered that Microsft didn’t declare to indemnify HP. “As an preliminary matter, the transcript from the referenced teleconference reveals no acknowledgement to the Court docket that Microsoft had accepted an obligation to indemnify HP,” and in its grievance, Microsoft solely claimed that HP is an authentic gear producer (OEM). The courtroom famous that whereas “Microsoft argues in its briefing that it has ‘accepted an obligation to defend, and is at the moment defending HP towards SynKloud’s infringement allegations.’” the the courtroom discovered that “there isn’t any case or controversy between the events on the idea of indemnification.”
The courtroom additionally thought of whether or not there was controversy between Microsoft and SynKloud based mostly on the purported third-party direct infringement based mostly on SynKloud’s purported “litigation marketing campaign” towards Microsoft and a number of other of its opponents. Microsoft asserted 11 patents for declaratory judgment, three of which SynKloud utilized in its motion towards HP. In an effort to indicate “that there’s a case or controversy between Microsoft and Synkloud as to the extra eight patents, Microsoft alleges that SynKloud initiated a ‘litigation marketing campaign’ towards Microsoft opponents Adobe and Acrobat” with comparable allegations to these towards HP, thus allegedly creating “authorized adversity.” Nevertheless, the decide identified that “whereas additionally they incorporate different events’ merchandise, SynKloud’s declare charts present that Samsung, ASUS, and Dell’s use of Microsoft OneDrive are central to SynKloud’s infringement contentions.” The courtroom concluded that “these circumstances don’t point out that there’s a dispute…adequate to represent an Article III case or controversy.”
Furthermore, for controversy based mostly on infringement towards Microsoft’s OEM, HP, the courtroom said that the declare charts don’t suggest that Microsoft contributorily infringed. The courtroom additionally discovered the direct infringement claims involving third events moreover HP unavailing. The courtroom said that “Microsoft has did not allege an precise controversy with respect to direct infringement” for particular patents-in-suit. Moreover, the decide said that there’s not “an precise controversy between Microsoft and SynKloud as to induced infringement of the ’254 and ’526 patents,” however there’s precise controversy for induced infringement for the ’225 patent as a result of Microsoft “offered directions on the right way to use OneDrive,” the allegedly infringing product. The courtroom added that Microsoft “established declaratory judgment jurisdiction” for contributory infringement for the three HP patents as a result of it glad the contributory infringement necessities.
The courtroom additionally thought of SynKloud’s allegations for failure to state a declare, asserting that Microsoft copies a declare limitation for every patent and, in response to SynKloud, these claims are “obscure and overbroad.” Particularly, Microsoft recognized its OneDrive product for this declare. The decide claimed that since he decided “that Microsoft has adequately pled ‘no direct infringement,’ I feel it has additionally adequately pled ‘no oblique infringement.’”
Consequently, the court granted-in-part and denied-in half SynKloud’s movement to dismiss. All of the claims had been dismissed by the decide because of lack of jurisdiction, not for failure to state a declare.
Microsoft is represented by Sidley Austin. SynKloud is represented by Klehr Harrison Harvey Branzburg LLP and One LLP.