It's Go Time For Apple, Samsung
Lecturer Brian J. Love comments on judge reactions to damages evidence presented at patent infringement tirals in the following article by Amy Miller and Claire Zillman of the National Law Journal.
Lawyers for Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. kicked off their high-stakes patent infringement trial last week on a day marked by drama and tension. Much is at stake. Apple seeks $2.5 billion from Samsung for allegedly stealing features of the iPad and iPhone.
But even if the jury awards Apple that much money, the company likely would face an uphill battle making the award stick. As recent high-profile patent trials have shown, big awards often evaporate or shrink drastically in post-trial motions and appeals.
Brian Love, a Stanford Law School lecturer who heads the school's law, science and technology LL.M. program, said judges often find fault with the way that damages evidence is presented at trial.
"Evidence presented to a jury can be misleading and not moored in rational economic thought," Love said. "Judges seem to be keyed into this and often reduce the awards to something they feel is more reasonable." He added: "[The evidence] is not always based on science. It's constructed post-hoc to make it seem like a patent is responsible for something like 3 to 5 percent of a device's sales."