New Albany, Indiana — Patent lawyers for CSP Technologies, Inc. of Auburn, Alabama have sued Clariant Produkte Deutschland GmbH of Frankfurt, Germany, Süd-Chemie, Inc. of Louisville, Kentucky and Airsec S.A.S. of Choisy-le-Roi, France (collectively, “Defendants”) for patent infringement in the Southern District of Indiana. At issue is RESEALABLE MOISTURE TIGHT CONTAINER ASSEMBLY FOR STRIPS AND THE LIKE HAVING A LIP SNAP SEAL, Patent No. 8,528,778 (the “‘778” patent), which has been issued by the U.S. Patent Office.
CSP develops, manufactures, distributes and sells product packaging that enhances the stability and shelf life of package contents. It has been granted patents directed towards desiccant-entrained polymers and other sealing technology incorporated into product packaging. Such technologies are designed to create a moisture-free environment for a packaged product.
CSP has sued Defendants Clariant Produkte Deutschland, Süd-Chemie and Airsec, which compete with CSP in the field of product packaging, for patent infringement. This is at least the third patent infringement lawsuit involving CSP and some or all of the Defendants. The first case was filed in 2003 in Indiana. In that case, CSP asserted infringement of U.S. Patent No. 5,911,937 and U.S. Patent No. 6,214,255, both titled DESICCANT ENTRAINED POLYMER. In a 108-page opinion, the judge held that CSP’s two patents were valid and that Süd-Chemie had infringed them. She ordered the parties into mediation where they eventually settled for $8 million. The court entered a consent order, retaining jurisdiction and enjoining Defendants in that case from infringing the asserted patents.
Following the resolution of that lawsuit, Defendants allegedly began or resumed selling infringing products. In response to Defendants’ sales, CSP filed an additional lawsuit in 2011, again in Indiana, alleging infringement of Patent No. 7,537,137. As is the ‘778 patent, that patent was titled RESEALABLE MOISTURE TIGHT CONTAINER ASSEMBLY FOR STRIPS AND THE LIKE HAVING A LIP SNAP SEAL.
This latest lawsuit was filed on September 10, 2013, the same day as the issuance of the ‘778 patent. It alleges willful infringement of CSP’s patented technology relating to packaging for, among other things, the diagnostic-test-strip market.
Patent attorneys for CSP list a single count of patent infringement in the complaint. It is asserted that Defendants’ conduct is willful and deliberate. CSP asks the court for preliminary and permanent injunctions barring infringement; for an accounting of damages, including both pre- and post-judgment interest and costs; for a determination that Defendants willfully and deliberately infringed the ‘778 patent, and that damages be trebled as a consequence; and that the case be declared exceptional and, pursuant to such a finding, that CSP be awarded its reasonable attorneys’ fees.
Practice Tip: The “willfulness” of the alleged infringement is an important issue in patent litigation because willful infringement results in a tripling of the damages awarded to the patent holder. To establish willfulness, the patent holder must prove that the infringer acted with at least “objective recklessness.”
This case has been assigned to Judge Tanya Walton Pratt and Magistrate Judge William G. Hussmann in the Southern District of Indiana and assigned Case No. 4:13-cv-00142-TWP-WGH.