Federal Circuit Addresses Apple-Uniloc Standing Battle in Related Alice Appeal, Calling Fortress Agreement “Little More Than a ‘Hunting License’”

September 1, 2019

An ongoing dispute over standing continues to simmer in litigation between Uniloc Corporation Pty. Limited and Apple, the latter of which has alleged that the NPE relinquished certain rights in the patents-in-suit by defaulting under a long series of agreements with Fortress Investment Group LLC—thereby depriving Uniloc of the right to sue. District Judge William Alsup of the Northern District of California rejected those arguments earlier this year, ruling that any default(s) by Uniloc had since been cured. While Judge Alsup declined to reconsider that decision in early August, he also allowed Apple to later seek a trial and conduct discovery on the issues of default and cure. Any additional evidence such discovery might uncover could now spill over into another Uniloc case, dismissed under Alice before the standing battle began and currently on appeal, as the result of a new Federal Circuit ruling. On August 30, the appeals court remanded that lawsuit for consideration of Apple’s subsequently raised standing challenge, ordering Judge Alsup to supplement the record and resolve the same jurisdictional issues hanging over the other four proceedings.

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