These days injunctions in patent cases in the Northern District are like steak tartare: pretty rare.
So the lawyers at Farella Braun & Martel were pleased with themselves after getting Judge Joseph Spero to grant a preliminary injunction for their client Volterra against German computer chip giant Infineon.
“They are very rare and, given the changes in the law with KSR and eBay, becoming even rarer,” said Farella Braun’s Jeff Fisher, who’s working on the case.
After the eBay v MercExchange case, it became nearly impossible for patent trolls to get injunctions, although it is still possible for operating companies like Volterra, a small Fremont semiconductor company. Patent holders like Volterra must show that they have a likelihood of succeeding on infringement and against any invalidity defenses, which have been strengthened by KSR.
As best we can tell, Elantech won the last preliminary injunction in the Northern District against Synaptics. There, the victorious lawyers were a bunch from Alston & Bird.
On the losing side of the preliminary injunction order was McDermott Will & Emery’s Terry McMahon, who didn’t return a call seeking comment. Judge Spero issued the order after a hearing Wednesday.
— Zusha Elinson