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Judge Shopping Tactic Constitutes Serious Misbehavior Justifing Award of Attorneys Fees

June 08, 2018 10:26 AM | Anonymous member
Following a dismissal for failure to prosecute after six years of litigation, the court granted defendants' motions for attorney fees under 35 U.S.C. § 285 because plaintiff's litigation tactics were unreasonable. "⁠[P]laintiff filed eight separate actions in this district against parties who turned out to be [the software developer defendant's] customers. None of those cases were marked as related. . . .  [A week later] plaintiff filed nine more separate actions in this district, again against parties who turned out to be [the developer's] customers. Again, none of these cases were marked as related. . . . [B]efore any of the defendants had been served -- plaintiff voluntarily dismissed every case that had not been assigned to [one judge] except [for two cases]. Then . . . plaintiff filed five more cases in this district against four more of [the developer's] customers and against [the developer] itself. This time, plaintiff marked these cases as related to each other and related to [a case] which had been assigned to [that judge]. . . . The Court therefore finds that plaintiff deliberately . . . waited to file its case against [the developer] itself until it could mark that case as related to one in front of its preferred judge. That conduct, under the circumstances, is serious misbehavior."

DataTern, Inc. v. Blazent, Inc., et. al., 1-11-cv-11970 (MAD June 5, 2018, Order) (Saylor, USDJ)

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