After five years of legal battles, the controversial Apple v. Samsung case was returned to the original District Court for the Northern District of California on Tuesday. The decision to return the case to the court that originally handled the lawsuit was made by the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit after that court was handed the case by the Supreme Court which reopened it in December.
While Samsung was initially ordered to compensate Apple for the damages related to certain patent infringements, the Supreme Court decided that the initial method of calculating those damages wasn't correct, adding that design patent cases require damages to be calculated based on individual components, and not devices manufactured using them. As Samsung was initially required to pay for damages based on the sales of its devices which infringed certain patents owned by Apple, the dispute was reopened once again. The Californian District court is now deciding how to proceed with the matter seeing how Apple and Samsung are requesting different approaches to the situation. The South Korean consumer electronics manufacturer is requesting an entirely new damages trial, while the Cupertino-based tech giant wants a continued panel review, the court revealed.
The ultimate decision is up to Judge Lucy Haeran Koh who is currently going over existing records and trying to determine whether another damages trial will be necessary. Apple was originally awarded over $1 billion in damages back in 2012, but Samsung's appeal resulted in that sum being reduced to $548 million. The figure could now change once again if Judge Koh decides that a retrial on them is in order. The fact that a Federal court returned this case to a District one isn't surprising seeing how this is standard practice in patent infringement cases stuck on determining damages. As Dorsey & Whitney's partner Case Collard explained, trial courts are better equipped to deal with this kind of disputes and seeing how Samsung already agreed to pay for some damages, the District Court for the Northern District of California won't have to waste time re-establishing the basic facts of the dispute. Given that state of affairs, an update on the situation is bound to follow soon.