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Judge Sleet denies motion to stay pending reexamination

Judge Gregory M. Sleet recently denied defendant’s motion to stay pending reexamination.  A.L.M. Holding Co., et al. v. Akzo Nobel Surface Chemistry LLC, C.A. No. 13-1069-GMS (D. Del. Sept. 16, 2014).  Judge Sleet considered three factors when deciding the stay motion:  (1) undue prejudice or tactical disadvantage to non-moving party, (2) simplification of issues, and (3) stage of case.  Id. 2 n.1.  Judge Sleet noted that undue prejudice requires more than “the mere possibility of delay.”  Id.  Judge Sleet determined that defendant appeared to have timely filed the request for ex parte reexamination, but that evidence suggested a stay might prejudice plaintiff’s product sales over the course of “what is likely to be a lengthy delay[.]”  Id.  This factor weighed against a stay.  Regarding simplification of issues, Judge Sleet noted that no matter the outcome, the results of the reexamination will “simplify issues before the court,” which weighed in favor a stay.  Id.  But, the last factor, stage of the case, tipped the scales against a stay because the case had “proceeded sufficiently far enough,” such that a claim construction hearing was scheduled for September 29, 2014 and trial was scheduled for July 2015.  Id.

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