Indianapolis, IN – Patent lawyers for Boston Scientific Corporation of Natick, Massachusetts and its wholly-owned subsidiaries, Guidant LLC of Indianapolis, Indiana and Cardiac Pacemakers LLC of St. Paul, Minnesota, filed a lawsuit seeking a declaratory judgment that they have not infringed Patent No. 4,407,288, IMPLANTABLE HEART STIMULATOR AND STIMULATION METHOD, which has been issued by the US Patent Office. The patent lawsuit has been filed against Mirowski Family Ventures, LLC of the State of Maryland.
The patent in question is described as “a method of treating heart arrhythmia with a therapy referred to as ‘cardioversion’ administered by Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator devices.” According to the complaint, Guidant obtained an exclusive license of the patent in question from Mirowski in 1973, which was renewed 2004. Pursuant the license agreement, Guidant was to pay a percentage of sales made based on the patented technology. In 2002, the Southern District of Indiana declared the ‘288 patent invalid in Cardiac Pacemaker, Inc. v. St. Jude Medical, Inc., No. IP 96-1718-C H/G (S.D. Ind.). This patent invalidity determination, however, was overturned by the Federal Circuit Court and then subject to further litigation, which concluded in 2010. Guidant and Mirowski had agreed to suspend payments on the license agreement while during this litigation, and Guidant, in its complaint, states that it has now paid what is due under the license agreement. According to the complaint, Mirowski has sent letters to Guidant accusing Guidant of breaching the license agreement and patent infringement. Boston Scientific and Guidant seek a declaratory judgment of noninfringement, a declaratory judgment of satisfaction of royalty obligation, and a declaratory judgment of no breach of contract.
Practice Tip: When a party seeks a declaratory judgment of noninfringment of a patent, the party must demonstrate that there is an actual and sufficient controversy, i.e. that the party has standing, in order for the federal court to have jurisdiction. The 2007 U.S. Supreme Court case MedImmune v. Genetch outlined the requirements for standing in patent license controversy. In this case, Boston Scientific claims it has standing because the parties “have adverse legal interests, of sufficient immediacy and reality to warrant the issuance of a declaratory judgment.”Complaint
Filed: May 31, 2011 as 1:2011cv00736 Updated: June 2, 2011 04:07:29
Plaintiffs: BOSTON SCIENTFIC CORPORATION, CARDIAC PACEMAKERS, INC., GUIDANT LLC. and GUIDANT SALES LLC.
Defendant: MIROWSKI FAMILY VENTURES, LLC
Presiding Judge: William T. Lawrence
Referring Judge: Denise K. LaRue
Cause Of Action: Patent Infringement