Klarquist Wins Attorney Fees for Client SAP America, Inc.
In a decision dated October 11, 2019 by Judge Haywood S. Gilliam, Jr. in the Northern District of California, the Court ordered Big Baboon, Inc. to pay $189,675.70 in attorney fees and costs to Klarquist client SAP America, Inc. (“SAP”). Earlier in 2019, Judge Gilliam granted SAP summary judgment that the asserted patent asserted was invalid because one of SAP’s accused products was in fact prior art. More information about that summary judgment victory can be found here.
After the Court granted summary judgment, SAP moved for an order that the case was “exceptional” under 35 U.S.C. § 285, justifying an award of its attorney fees and expenses. On September 9, 2019, Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Laporte issued a Report and Recommendation that Big Baboon’s claims were “exceptionally weak because it litigated an invalid patent long after SAP” provided Big Baboon with evidence that the accused product had been shipped over one year before the patent application was filed. Judge Laporte also recommended finding that “Big Baboon’s litigation conduct, taken as a whole, also was unreasonable,” including by filing “multiple failed suits on the same patent” and “forc[ing] SAP to spend resources on meritless motions.”
Judge Laporte also found Klarquist’s billing rates well below those for the San Francisco area used to judge reasonableness for the case, and found that SAP had “demonstrated that the hours spent were reasonable.” Accordingly, Judge Laporte recommended awarding SAP $188,270.50 in attorney fees and $1,405.20 in costs.
Big Baboon filed objections, but Judge Gilliam’s order of October 11, 2019 awarding the fees and costs decided that Judge Laporte’s Report and Recommendation was “correct, well-reasoned and thorough,” and adopted it “in every respect.”