A Blog About Intellectual Property Litigation and the District of Delaware

Unsurprisingly, in light of COVID-19, recent signs indicate that the Court is all booked up for this year, and probably for a large part of next year.

Here, for example, is a Judge Stark order from yesterday:

ORAL ORDER: Having discussed with the parties on repeated occasions whether and when to schedule this patent infringement case for a jury trial (see, e.g., D.I. 474, 549, 583, 590, 591, 593, 596, 605, 607, 608, 610-15) and having found (unfortunately) no date that is reasonable and available to all parties and to the Court, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that trial in this matter is CONTINUED to a DATE TO BE DETERMINED, most likely in 2021 (and certainly NOT in 2020). IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the parties shall meet and confer and, no later than October 19, submit a joint status report which shall include up to three separate dates in 2021 on which all parties reasonably expect they and their witnesses can be available to start a jury trial. Thereafter, the Court will endeavor (consistent with its limited resources) to place this case on its calendar for a presumptive trial on one of the requested dates. Any trial that is scheduled may need to be further rescheduled due to further developments, including the evolving public health situation and other cases (especially criminal cases) that may require trial. ORDERED by Judge Leonard P. Stark on 10/13/20. (ntl) (Entered: 10/13/2020)

Other judges on the Court have likewise mentioned that the backlog of jury trials is large and that criminal trials get priority. Hopefully it will start to clear quickly once the first few jury trials happen and the new procedures are tested and refined.

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