In a case before District Judge Rodney Gilstrap, an NPE has filed an opposition to several motions to dismiss arguing that a domestic corporation might be deemed to reside outside of its state of incorporation despite this past May’s TC Heartland decision. In TC Heartland, the US Supreme Court held that 1988 revisions to the general venue statute did not change (as the Federal Circuit had ruled) the previously understood residence of a domestic corporation for venue purposes: such a defendant “resides” only in the state in which it was incorporated. District courts have been grappling with the implications of this return to the earlier understanding of venue in patent cases in the weeks since TC Heartland was handed down. Script Security Solutions LLC, an affiliate of patent monetization firm Empire IP LLC, has now urged Judge Gilstrap to treat venue in Texas, a large state with multiple judicial districts, under a different portion of the general venue statute than was considered in TC Heartland, a decision involving a case brought in the small, single-district state of Delaware.
One recently formed NPE affiliated with Empire IP LLC has asserted a familiar patent in a new litigation campaign, while another has expanded an existing campaign, both in Texas. Listou Search Technologies LLC filed separate complaints against clothing retailers Men’s Wearhouse (5:16-cv-00144) and Stanley Korshak (5:16-cv-00145), asserting a single patent (6,216,139) generally related to the display of dialog boxes in a computer system. As in the prior campaign, litigated by the inventor in Delaware, the accused products are the defendants’ websites. Meanwhile, Theft Prevention Innovations LLC has added cases against AeroScout and Stanley Black & Decker (2:16-cv-01060), Elpas and Tyco (2:16-cv-01057), and RF Code (2:16-cv-01059). Two patents (7,671,741; 9,165,446) from a three-patent family generally related to anti-theft systems are asserted in the campaign, which targets the defendants’ asset tags and tracking systems.