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Judge Andrews stays customer suit pending resolution of later filed DJ action filed by supplier

In Pragmatus Telecom, LLC v. Advanced Store Company, Inc., C.A. No. 12-088-RGA (D. Del. July 10, 2012), Judge Andrews granted defendants’ motion to stay the case pending resolution of a later-filed declaratory judgment action filed by the supplier of the allegedly infringing technology. Judge Andrews determined a stay was warranted in the interest of judicial economy and efficiency, finding that any ruling in the later-filed action would “most likely be dispositive of this case[,]” and that the case was in its early stages with no trial currently scheduled. Id. at 4-5. Judge Andrews also found that plaintiff would not be prejudiced by a stay. “Pragmatus is solely in the business of monetizing patents, and since Customers are not ‘direct competitors,’ injunctive relief is not available. Any purported harm that Pragmatus suffers from a stay can be fully compensated by monetary damages.” Id. at 5. Defendants also argued that the Customer Suit Exception to the First-Filed Rule also favored a stay. Judge Andrews determined, however, that while the reasoning behind the Customer Suit Exception supported granting a stay, the exception itself did not apply. “The First Filed Rule is a forum favoring rule, i.e., one that applies when multiple claims exist in multiple jurisdictions. Here, both [actions] are before this Court, and no ‘forum favoring’ is needed.” Id. at 6.


Pragmatus Telecom, LLC v. Advanced Store Company, Inc., C.A. No. 12-088-RGA (D. Del. July 10, 2012)

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