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Chrimar Systems, Inc. v. Adtran, Inc.

Area of Law:

Patent Law

Grounds:

Defendants moved to strike opinions of Plaintiff’s technical expert Dr. Vijay Madisetti regarding commercial success as a secondary consideration of nonobviousness and commercial viability of non-infringing alternatives on ground the they are outside Dr. Madisetti’s technical expertise.

Outcome:

Denied.

Analysis:

With respect to commercial success, Defendants argued that Dr. Madisetti relied on growth of sales of product, having no training or expertize as an economist, accountant, or market expert.  Defendants also argued that Dr. Madisetti failed to establish nexus, which is a requirement for showing secondary consideration of nonobviousness.  The court refuse to preclude the expert opinion.  The court explained that Dr. Madisetti relied in his analysis on Plaintiff’s damages expert, which is not uncommon, and indeed permissible.  The court also added that Dr. Madisetti’s opinions address nexus.  Ultimately, the court held that the opinions on commercial success go to the weight of testimony, not its admissibility.

With respect to commercial viability, Defendants argued that Dr. Madisetti’s opinions analyzing various factors were conclusory and unsupported.  Defendants’ main complain focused on lack of economic analysis in Dr. Madisetti’s opinion.  The court, however, declined to strike the expert opinion.  The court explained that Dr. Madisetti perform extensive technical analysis as to various proposals which drove his conclusion of commercial viability.  Without directly addressing Defendant’s economic analysis argument, the court concluded that Defendant’s argument would go to the weight of Dr. Madisetti’s opinion, not the admissibility.