Three shareholders of Texas-based NPE Allcare Health Management System, Inc. have moved to dismiss a lawsuit filed by Highmark, which seeks to pierce the corporate veil and hold them personally liable for a $5.2M attorney fee award. In a complaint filed in January, Highmark asserts that Allcare principals W. Halden Conner, Thomas G. Plaskett, and Robert H. Shelton purposefully operated the NPE as a “nearly insolvent shell entity” in a fraudulent attempt to avoid paying fees, while the three shareholders now deny any breach of fiduciary duty and allege pleading deficiencies. The underlying fee dispute in Highmark v. Allcare (4:03-cv-01384) made it to the US Supreme Court, leading to an April 2014 holding that attorney fee awards can be reviewed only for abuse of discretion (2012-1163). That same day, the Court held in companion case Octane Fitness v. Icon Health & Fitness that a patent suit may be found to be “exceptional” under Section 285 by considering the “totality of the circumstances” (2012-1184).
A Texas judge has invalidated a pair of medical records patents (5,682,526; 5,715,451) asserted by Uniloc Luxembourg S.A. and Uniloc USA, Inc. (collectively, “Uniloc”). In an order issued on March 30, District Judge Robert Schroeder III granted multiple motions to dismiss filed by Harris Computer, Netsmart Technologies, Picis, Practice Fusion, and QuadraMed in a consolidated action against Medical Information Technology (d/b/a Meditech) (6:16-cv-00463), ruling that the ‘526 and ‘451 patents are invalid under Alice as impermissibly directed to the abstract ideas of “organizing medical data in a hierarchy” and “creating and storing user-constructed formulas”, respectively. This is the second and final blow dealt to the campaign under Alice, with a single claim from each patent previously found ineligible in an August 2015 decision by Judge Schroeder.
USB Technologies, LLC (USB Tech) has resumed its sole litigation campaign, asserting a single patent (7,809,866) generally related to an SD memory card with built-in USB connectivity against Gigastone (8:16-cv-01334), Micron (2:16-cv-05256), PNY Technologies (2:16-cv-05259), Silicon Power Computer and CommunicationsUSA (2:16-cv-05260), and Transcend (8:16-cv-01339). These are USB Tech’s first filings since the last suits from its previous round were dismissed with prejudice in November 2015. As in the Pasadena-based NPE’s previous cases, its latest defendants are accused of infringement through the making or selling of dual-interface USB flash drives.
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