Judge Noreika Grants Motion for Remittitur
November 11, 2022
In ArcherDX, LLC v. Qiagen Sciences, LLC, No. 18-1019-MN (Sept. 30, 2022), Judge Noreika granted the defendants’ request for remittitur. The plaintiffs had prevailed at trial on patent infringement claims.
The jury had awarded more than $1.5M in domestic reasonable royalty damages to the plaintiffs, which the parties agreed was a mistake—as the defendants noted, the figure exceeded the estimate for this category of damages provided by each side’s expert, and it appeared to have been derived by mistakenly adding the plaintiffs’ lost profits figure to their U.S. reasonable royalty damages figure. Accordingly, the defendants sought remittitur of a figure no higher than the U.S. reasonable royalty damages suggested by the plaintiffs’ expert.
The plaintiffs contended that the defendants waived any challenge to any inconsistency in the award by not objecting before the jury was excused, citing Frank C. Pollara Group, LLC v. Ocean View Investment Holding, LLC, 784 F.3d 177, 190–91 (3d Cir. 2015), a decision involving a facially inconsistent verdict. Judge Noreika found that Pollara did not apply here, however, since it was not an inconsistency in the verdict that was at issue but rather a verdict unsupported by evidence.
Because of the absence of evidence for the award and the undisputed mistake, the court ruled that the plaintiffs could accept the highest figure for domestic reasonable royalty damages offered by their expert or try this category of damages again.
The decision is available here.
Key Point: A verdict unsupported by the evidence is not the same as an inconsistent verdict.