• IPR Declaration and Expert Witness Assistance

    August 26, 2019 edwin IPR, Patents, USPTO

    What is an IPR?

    IPR is an intellectual property process called “Inter-Parties Review” or IPR. This process includes a “Petitioner,” a company filing a petition,  and a “Patent Owner” that owns a disputed patent.

    The “Petitioner” files this petition because it believes a “Patent Owner” (PO) owns an invalid patent, and decides to challenge its validity, not as part of a jury trial, but in front of the “Patent Trial and Appeals Board” (PTAB).   The PTAB was created as part of American Invents Act (AIA), but has suffered numerous criticisms from patent owners as it is been known to kill many patents usually in favor of petitioners.  However, recent statistics indicate that:

    Out of 4,139 decisions made by the PTAB, 2,512 (61%) didn’t touch a single challenged claim.  9

    The IPR process can be filed, in some cases with evidence using other patents and prior-art, that Petitioner seems to think invalidates the claims in a patent.

    Many inventors face challenges and criticize that some reviews are overly broad and many times, PTAB’s judges extend greatly sometimes with not sufficient clarity of how broad a claim is interpreted, and some may dare to say that this is still an unpredictable outcome.

    After filing a petition, this process may take a total of 12 months to complete. First a Petitioner files a brief or what’s called “Petition” that contains the patent to be be invalidated and an expert declaration made by a Person of Ordinary Skill in the Arts (POSA).

    The grounds for the petition filed by a “Petitioner” must be based under 35 U.S.C. §§ 102 or 103. 

    The USPTO presents the following timeline from filing to other steps.

    How can I help you as an Expert?

    You will definitely need an expert witness to assist you in filing and filing a reply brief.  I can help you drafting a declaration and review what is being filed with assistance of your patent attorneys.

    if you are a petitioner filing, you will need an expert declaration that is attached to your petition, if you are a “Patent Owner” your response must also include an Expert Witness declaration.

    The expert declaration will include technical background on why the prior-art covers the patent being challenged or doesn’t cover it, if you are the patent owner.

    As a Patent Owner (PO), you may receive a notification that a petition is file and a reply is due at a certain date. You will then have two options:

    • First, respond in great detail with your best arguments and obtain a denial of the IPR being instituted,
    • or Second, respond superficially and don’t disclose all your arguments and let the IPR be instituted, then file a declaration and obligate petitioner to disclose all their arguments.

    Once petitioner has disclose all these arguments, those cannot be changed. In fact, there could be estoppel consequences in US Federal court if a case is in trial, for those cases you may contact your patent attorney.

    In general, the challenges filed by a Petitioner in an IPR trial, are very similar to what you will find in “Invalidity Contentions” or an Invalidity Report in an infringement matter.

    Personally, I have assisted Citrix, Multimedia Content Management, LLC, and others in their IPR proceedings. I am an experience expert and can assist you in other patent matters.

    Usually, I will work together with your patent attorney,  Your patent attorney will  will draft the response, attach my declaration,  and other exhibits that supplement that declaration that ultimately give a strong foundations to the technical arguments that are being disputed.

    These arguments need to be carefully crafted to ensure prior matters, including other claim constructions or invalidity contentions are  sound and not contradicting with each other.  I as a witness may also be deposed by the Petitioner or the Patent Owner.

    Feel free to reach me and I will help you with your needs.

    751 Park of Commerce Dr. Suite 128,
    Boca Raton, FL, 33487     561.306.4996
    edwin@edwinhernandez.com

    What to write in a declaration?

    The declaration must be able to detect offensive and defensive arguments. Offensive is that a POSA would have known how to combine a patent or use prior-art available to re-create the invention.

    Defensively, you must know exactly if there are missing components and whether nor not a POSA would have been inclined to combine what a petitioner argues.  Many times, there are words chosen or similar capabilities are forced by a petitioner to make their arguments infant of the PTAB board.

    My declaration will have as a final objective:

    • Teach the PTAB board, how far-fetched a Petitioner arguments may be, can they be combined, are disclosures sufficient and how similar,
    • Teach the PTAB board how close Petitioner or a POSA would combine art and generate the patent claim, meaning is that claim disclosed in one or several combinations of prior art?

    In general, my job as an expert is to sit the foundation that your attorney will use to craft legal arguments and persuade a positive outcome to your case.

    If you need an Expert for IPR, contact me!

    If my area of expertise is not sufficient, or I may be busy in other cases I  can find you the right person for the job, contact me asap to study your case and what options you may have.

    Declaration Cost

    An expert may cost between $375 to $575 per hour with retainers ranging from $5,000 to $10,000.  Additional fees for depositions or additional declarations.  Contact me for pricing and what kind of arrangement can I make for you.


    For more information, rates, and references contact us at:

  • Music Choice Patent Axed Partially by PTAB

      

    Late September and early October total of two judgments have been filed thus far by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) in the case against Music Choice’s patent. As indicated in the rulings for IPR2017-00888 and IPR2017-01191, partial axing fo the patents have been granted to Stingray or against Music Choice’s interest.  Interesting findings that enforce the value of our cloud to cable TV patents.The final written decisions are available herein:As Law360 points out:
    ” The case split the PTAB panel, with each of the three judges filing opinions. The majority ruling by Judge Mitchell Weatherly held that eight of the patent’s 20 claims are invalid because Stingray showed that a person skilled in the art would be motivated to combine the earlier inventions to arrive at Music Choice’s invention, which includes both a playlist and on-demand playback. Source: https://www.law360.com/media/articles/1091845/ptab-partly-axes-music-choice-patent-in-row-with-rival “
    This goes in accordance to the prediction made by myself back when this issue was discussed initially, specially in the article where I analyzed the acquisition of Music Choice by Stingray digital.

    Infringement and Damages Model

    As expected Music Choice should be more interested not so much on the “Video on Demand” revenues which is what these two patents cover, but more so in the patent covering the method and system for broadcasting to Cable TV which is the main source of revenues for both companies. The patent in dispute will be resolved this Friday October 19th, 2018, and the patent 8,769,062 as well as the original applications from 2001-08-28 which is claimed as priority date.It is my opinion that a similar outcome may result from the PTAB panel.Hence, what would the damages be for Music Choice? Well, I don’t have access to any information but what is found online, and in a letter from 2014, Music Choice was claimed to have 56M homes, or 57M listeners per month.  Source: https://www.justice.gov/sites/default/files/atr/legacy/2014/08/18/307851.pdf ‘In this document, Music Choice indicates that their Multi-Video Programming Distributors (MVPD) constitutes a main source of income for the company. Additionally, in a marketing material VOD distribution is said to have 72M subscribers as of Music Choice’s 2016 PDF :http://corporate.musicchoice.com/files/2214/6228/4671/2016_Music_Choice_Media_Kit.pdfIn a similar filing, Music Choice makes a case with a rebuttal testimony by Gregory S. Crawford, PhD https://www.crb.gov/rate/16-CRB-0001-SR-PSSR-SDARSIII/rebuttals/2-21-17-music-choice.pdf Hence, assuming a price point of let’s say 0.05c to 0.25c/subscriber and recalling what Mr. Boyko said in a prior-conference call, Music Choice should have revenues could be:
    • 0.05c per subscriber @ 50M subs = $30M/year
    • 0.25c per subscriber @ 50M subs = $150M/year
    Assuming now that, Stingray has landed $8M/quarter with an increase of 102.2% or 23.5% o the total revenues, from the 4th Quarter Report available online
    ” … or the quarter, Canadian revenues decreased 2.6% to $13.6 million (41.3% of total revenues) due to decrease in non-recurring revenues related to digital signage, United States revenues increased 102.2% to $7.8 million (23.5% of total revenues), whereas revenues in Other Countries increased by 34.4% to $11.6 million (35.2% of total revenues). (CNBC source: https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/07/globe-newswire-stingray-reports-fourth-quarter-2018-results.html) “
    What this means is that somehow per year $32M/year o revenues were eroded from Music Choice’s pie, or since 2014 when the lawsuit was said to have had some issues with Stingray, then the total loss could be $32×4=$120M on damages.  Which, it seems to have been the offering made by Stingray digital to Music Choice for a full acquisition.The question is, what would be the forward revenues would be for a Georgia-Pacific model that a damages expert would have done for pricing moving forward and how Stingray Digital would have to pay for any future earnings to Music Choice. The information collected indices a 35% tax by Stingray on royalties and potentially another 20-30% which in turn would make operations in the United States at no profit or even at a loss.

    Conclusion

    It is very hard to compute a damages calculation, assuming that infringement takes place in the surviving claims of the patents in dispute. Hence, if damages were to be computed should be in the range of 8-9 digits with upside to the future, not including potential treble damages which could account for more money to be paid.Alternatively, Cloud to Cable TV  is the best technological platform for monetization with Cable TV and works using the most recent advancements in Cloud computing, Web technologies, and in combination with standard DVB Systems.  A unified patented technology for Cable TV distribution!
    https://eglacomm.net/cloud-to-cable-tv/
    Cloud to Cable TV  – US Patent 10,123,074