Monday, December 29, 2008

In re TS Tech to shut down patent biz in ED Texas?

Back in May, IPBiz asked Will VW shut down the patent biz of ED Texas?. With the CAFC order in the case In re TS Tech, the answer may be "yes." TS Tech wanted to get out of ED Texas. They succeeded. The CAFC stated:

The district court is directed to vacate its September 10, 2008 order and to transfer the case to the United States
District Court for the Southern District of Ohio.

In the CAFC matter, the CAFC relied on the VW case to grant a writ of mandamus (remember Marbury v. Madison?),
with the CAFC writing:

There is no easy-to-draw line separating a “clear” abuse of discretion from a
“mere” abuse of discretion in all cases. Volkswagen II, 545 F.3d at 310.
Nevertheless, we conclude that TS Tech has met its difficult burden of demonstrating a
clear and indisputable right to a writ. As in Volkswagen II, the district court clearly
abused its discretion in denying transfer from a venue with no meaningful ties to the
case. In granting mandamus, the en banc Fifth Circuit found that the court’s denial of
transfer was a clear abuse of discretion because it (1) applied too strict of a standard to
demonstrate transfer, (2) misconstrued the weight of the plaintiff’s choice of venue, (3)
treated choice of venue as a § 1404 factor, (4) misapplied the forum non conveniens
factors, (5) disregarded Fifth Circuit precedent, including the 100-mile rule, and (6)
glossed over the fact that not a single relevant factor favored the plaintiff’s chosen
venue. Id. at 318. Because the district court’s errors here are essentially identical, we
hold that TS Tech has demonstrated a clear and indisputable right to a writ.


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