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Apple's Escape from $308 Million Verdict Pings Still-Lurking 'Submarine' Patents

Loeb & Loeb Patent Litigation partner Brent Babcock spoke with Reuters about the recent overturning of a $308.5 million patent verdict against Apple brought by Personalized Media Communications (PMC). The case alleged that Apple infringed a digital rights management patent owned by PMC.

The latest ruling by U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas Chief Judge Rodney Gilstrap torpedoed a rare "submarine" patent, which involves protracted delays for maximal payoff and was mostly used before 1995 – the year when the law changed to base the length of patent protection on when an application was filed instead of when the patent was issued.

Babcock, who has represented Amazon against PMC at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, noted in the article that PMC's tactics were "abusive" attempts to "utilize a giant loophole in the system."

"My guess is that patent attorneys who are doing this — if they are still doing this — are going to be more careful about what they say when they're asked in depositions about how they handled the case," Babcock told the publication.

Click here to read the article on Reuters’ website.