McDermott IP Litigation Matter Named “Top Defense Result of 2014”


WASHINGTON DC, BOSTON, SILICON VALLEY (February 20, 2015) — McDermott Will & Emery LLP is proud to announce that the post-trial outcome in Power Integrations Inc. v. Fairchild Semiconductor International Inc. et al. has earned a spot on the Daily Journal’s list of “Top Defense Results of 2014.” This distinct recognition highlights an outstanding defense victory that not only changed the course of this case, but may also have a significant impact on the future of damages law in intellectual property disputes.

Power Integrations Inc. v. Fairchild Semiconductor International Inc. et al. is part of a multi-case dispute that has been going on in the court system for approximately ten years. In this particular case, a San Francisco federal jury awarded Power Integrations over one hundred million dollars in damages. McDermott’s trial team immediately got to work on behalf of Defendant, Fairchild, filing post-trial motions challenging various aspects of the damages methodology. Specifically, the McDermott team argued to the Court that the damages model used to calculate damages was unreliable on several fronts and resulted in a legally impermissible verdict with grossly overstated damages based on a speculative damages model. The District Court ultimately agreed with McDermott’s arguments and took the rare step of throwing out the jury’s award completely, thus ordering a new trial on damages.

When interviewed about this matter, McDermott Partner and lead trial counsel, Blair Jacobs, was quoted in the Daily Journal article saying: “I think this is important because jurisprudence in the last 40 years…has been refining laws with respect to damages. We’d really never seen a case before where it worked down to this level of granularity, but I think this is where the law is heading.”

The defense result in this case is important because it clarifies that damages in patent cases must be narrowly tailored to cover only the patented features of a product or process, not the entire product. And, in the end, McDermott’s defense result sends a strong message that damages for intellectual property should be narrowly tailored to the precise harm involved.

The McDermott litigation team for this matter consists of Blair M. Jacobs, Christina Ondrick, and Robert Walters of the Washington, DC office, along with Leigh Martinson from the Boston office, and Marisa Chun from the Silicon Valley office.

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With more than 175 lawyers and patent agents around the world, McDermott’s Intellectual Property practice is renowned for its broad trial, appellate, prosecution and transaction experience. Members of the practice hold degrees in a wide variety of technical fields and are uniquely capable of handling intellectual property matters in virtually every technical or scientific discipline. For example, more than 140 members of McDermott’s intellectual property team hold technical and/or scientific degrees and more than 115 are registered to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). McDermott’s Intellectual Property practice includes numerous lawyers with valuable industry experience as well as former USPTO examiners and petition specialists.

About McDermott Will & Emery
McDermott Will & Emery is a premier international law firm with a diversified business practice. Numbering more than 1,000 lawyers, we have offices in Boston, Brussels, Chicago, Dallas, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Houston, London, Los Angeles, Miami, Milan, Munich, New York, Orange County, Paris, Rome, Seoul, Silicon Valley and Washington, D.C. Further extending our reach into Asia, we have a strategic alliance with MWE China Law Offices in Shanghai.

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