by Dennis Crouch
Waco Texas has been a scorching spot for patent infringement litigation over the previous a number of years. All of us love “Fixer Higher” and Baylor. However, the Waco distinction for patent instances is Choose Alan Albright. Choose Albright is a former patent litigator appointed to the bench by President Trump in 2018. Everybody loves having a patent-knowledgeable choose and there are not any clear statistics suggesting that Albright unduly favors patentees. Nonetheless, Choose Albright is now predictable in his strategy and has a “get-the-case-to-trial” focus that plaintiffs love. Defendants usually desire to spend extra time on dispositive motions — hoping to throw-the-case-out earlier than trial. As well as Defendants usually desire to remain litigation pending patent workplace IPR evaluation.
Choose Albright is the one Federal choose in Waco, and that has made a giant distinction. And, Beneath conventional WDTex guidelines an motion filed in Waco will likely be heard by Choose Albright. That is fairly completely different from different courts which have a number of judges with random project of recent instances.
Garcia Order I: Again in July 2022, Western District of Texas Chief Choose Orlando Garcia issued a significant order shaking up the foundations of judicial project. Particularly, the order states that new patent instances filed in Waco will likely be randomly distributed amongst 12 completely different WDTex judges. This transformation somwhat slowed down new-case submitting in Waco. Instances have been distributed among the many judges, though Choose Albright continues to obtain about half of the brand new instances. A lot of the relaxation have been assigned to Judges Choose Pittman, Garcia, Yeakel, and Rodriguez.
Garcia Order II: In November 2022, Choose Garcia took Senior Standing and stepped down from his position as Chief Choose. Just a few days earlier than stepping down, Garcia issued a brand new order that doesn’t expressly point out patent instances, however does point out that Choose Albright will likely be assigned “[a]ll instances and proceedings within the Waco Division.” On its face, the brand new order appears to overrule Order I, however that is still unclear. The New Chief Choose Alia Moses might want to make clear. I’ll observe that a number of the instances assigned to Chief Choose Moses underneath the Garcia I order have already been transferred again to Choose Albright.
The Garcia II order took impact on December 1, 2022. Since then, 18 new patent infringement lawsuits have been filed in W.D.Tex. (Waco) (in line with PACER) with the next assignments:
- 13 are assigned to Choose Albright
- 2 are assigned to Choose Yeakel (these are associated, each filed by Vilox).
- 3 aren’t but assigned to any choose.
These outcomes counsel Garcia II has modified the sport and that Choose Albright will likely be receiving the majority of the patent docket going ahead. We’ll be searching for a extra optimistic assertion from the court docket, however these are usually uncommon.
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Severely, I don’t have HGTV at my home, however each time we journey, my spouse and I usually simply lay within the huge lodge mattress and watch Fixer Higher.