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Chief Judge Stark denies motion to stay pending reexam

Chief Judge Leonard P. Stark recently denied defendants’ motion to stay pending ex parte reexamination of the patent-in-suit.  Cronos Technologies, LLC v. Expedia, Inc., et al., C.A. No. 13-1538-LPS, 13-1541-LPS, 13-1544-LPS (D. Del. Mar. 21, 2016).  In doing so, Judge Stark addressed the factors relevant to whether a stay is warranted.  As to whether a stay would simplify issues, Judge Stark noted that this factor was neutral because, although all asserted claims were before the PTO, there was not complete overlap between the invalidity issues addressed by this Court and those by the PTO.  Id. at 2.  Regarding timing, Judge Stark noted that this factor weighed against a stay because the reexamination was at its early stages while trial was set in this Court for August 2016.  Id.at 3.  Last, regarding any delay in requesting reexamination, Judge Stark noted that plaintiff’s status as a non-practicing entity reduced prejudice it might suffer from a stay, but because defendants will not be estopped from raising the same invalidity defenses raised during reexamination, a stay may give them “‘two bites at the apple'[.]”  Id.  at 4.

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