A Blog About Intellectual Property Litigation and the District of Delaware

Entries for tag: Mavexar

Better $200/day than cell block 200, I suppose.
Better $200/day than cell block 200, I suppose. Kenny Eliason, Unsplash

When we last wrote about Mavexar, Chief Judge Connolly had held a civil contempt hearing after he ordered the sole member of Backertop, a Mavexar-related LLC, to appear in-person in Delaware and she failed to appear (she instead initiated a head-on challenge to the authority of the Court). She likewise failed to appear for her contempt hearing.

Today, the Court issued its opinion and order, holding the witness in contempt. It handily dispatched with each of the witness' arguments against the hearing.

It easily rejected their first argument—that the Court lacks jurisdiction after the entity, Backertop Licensing LLC, dismissed it's complaint. The Court reiterated the same ruling it made last time.

Next, the Court easily rejected the idea that civil contempt is "meant to benefit the complainant," citing multiple U.S. Supreme Court opinions to the contrary. It also rejected the idea that a party can re-litigate the underlying order in context of a contempt proceeding.

I found the Court's discussion of the alleged Fifth Amendment violation interesting, particularly when the Court attempts to identify exactly which Fifth Amendment right it could possibly have ...

Crab in Net
Andrew Russell, displayed with permission

We're back! Our trial was a success, Nate is back from his travels, and things have cooled down enough for us to resume regular posts this week.

While we were tied up, there was some progress in the Mavexar cases. If you recall, Chief Judge Connolly had ordered the sole member of Backertop, a Mavexar-related LLC, to appear in-person in Delaware to answer for the entities' potential fraud on the Court. She objected, stating that she would not appear.

Since then, the July 20 hearing occurred, and as promised she did not appear—although her counsel, and counsel for Backertop, did show up. The transcript for that hearing is below.

The Court discussed the production …

Come At Me Bro Crab
chanphoto, Unsplash

As I mentioned on Monday, my co-bloggers Nate, Emily, and I are swamped at the moment, with a trial this week and another coming up in a week and a half—so this will be a less fulsome post than I'd like.

But I wanted to pass along the "Notice of Objection to and Non-Participation in Judicial Inquisition" attached below, in which the Mavexar-related entity Backertop Licensing LLC and its owner refuse to appear for the Court's scheduled July 20, 2023 hearing (and to produce any further documents), in direct contravention of an order of the Court:

Former Plaintiff Backertop Licensing LLC (“Backertop” or “Plaintiff”) hereby gives …

Dino Reichmuth, Unsplash

We wrote last month about the "mansplaining brief," which caught some eyes around town when it (and the declaration attached to it) accused the Court of "gender harassment and discrimination."

We set out the full background in our post, but generally the Court ordered the sole member of a Mavexar-related LLC to attend a hearing here in Delaware.

She then filed a motion for reconsideration offering numerous objections, including among other things that (1) the Court had no power under FRCP 45 to compel her attendance, since she lives in Texas; and (2) that she is a working mother and therefore unable to travel to Delaware.

(She also said that she "feels harassed" by …

Hercules Slaying the Hydra

Judge Connolly’s new order provides a concise summary of the Mavexar timeline and announced the date of a long-delayed evidentiary hearing in the Creekview case.

Mark your calendars for Friday, 7/21 at 9:00AM in Courtroom 4B. This hearing was originally slated for December 6, 2022, but it never happened.

Last fall, Judge Connolly ordered a series of evidentiary hearings in approximately a dozen cases to determine whether LLC plaintiffs had complied with his standing order.

According to the Court in his newest order, the first hearing in that series, involving Nimitz, Mellaconic, and Lamplight:

raised serious concerns that the parties may have made inaccurate statements in filings with the Court; that counsel, including Mr. Chong, may have …

"Sure, I had my LLC sue a bunch of people in Delaware, but I didn't think the Court would actually make me GO there." Andrew Russell, CC BY 2.0

I guess our post about the Mavexar hearing last week was remiss in failing to talk about the "mansplaining brief." I've had a couple of people ask me about it. Here is the background and some quick thoughts.

Chief Judge Connolly Orders Mavexar-LLC's Sole Member to Testify In Person

The short version of the leadup: Mavexar is an entity that creates LLCs to assert patents against tech companies for quick settlements, often in Delaware. The LLCs take all of the risk, and Mavexar keeps 90-95% of the profits while hiding its …

Backertop's—or Mavexar's—Two Attorneys
Backertop's—or Mavexar's—Two Attorneys AI Generated

The Court held a lengthy hearing in the Backertop cases today. These are Mavexar-related actions and, if you recall, they involve a Mavexar attorney and his wife, who he appointed as the sole member of a Mavexar patent assertion entity.

How a Patent Assertion Entity is Born

Some of the Court's questions focused on exactly what Mavexar does, and confirmed that they operate basically as set out in the earlier hearings.

Here, from the lawyer's perspective, Mavexar attorneys reached out and said that Mavexar wanted to start several litigation campaigns, and asked whether the attorney was interested. They said that they would figure out what entity would actually assert the patents later.

In …

Possessed Photography, Unsplash

Chief Judge Connolly issued a memorandum order in the Backertop case today. We talked previously about how the plaintiff in Backertop is an LLC whose sole member is a paralegal who is married to an attorney who works at Mavexar, who gets just 5% of the proceeds of litigating the patents owned by the LLC (the rest goes to Mavexar).

Following a hearing last year, the Court ordered production of various documents, and ordered the owner of the LLC to appear again for a hearing on June 8. She asked to attend remotely due to other obligations.

Today, Chief Judge Connolly denied her request, but rescheduled her appearance for July (the June 8 hearing will still …

Artist's depiction of an attorney on the phone with the Wall Street Journal, trying frantically not to say anything embarassing.
Artist's depiction of an attorney on the phone with the Wall Street Journal, trying frantically not to say anything embarassing. AI Generated

The Wall Street Journal posted a nice article today summarizing Chief Judge Connolly's efforts against Mavexar, with comments from myself and Maya Steinitz. Here's how they summarize the situation:

A federal judge in Delaware is on a campaign to eliminate hidden funding of intellectual-property lawsuits against companies, a crackdown that is roiling the patent-law industry.

They go on to give a solid overview of what has happened so far, and they mention the upcoming hearing that the Court set for June 8.

It's good to see this in the spotlight—it's an important issue that people care about!

The Mavexar crab is starting to sweat.
The Mavexar crab is starting to sweat. AI-Generated

It looks like activity is picking up again in the Mavexar cases. If you haven't followed all of our coverage so far (I don't blame you!), here is a summary of where we left off.

Today, Chief Judge Connolly issued an order denying a Mavexar entity's motions to set aside or stay compliance with the Court's March order requiring them to produce various documents, including potentially privileged documents.

He found that Supreme Court precedent shows that the District Court retains jurisdiction regarding collateral issues—like this one—even after a dismissal. According to the Court, that remains true regardless of whether the issues are raised by the parties or by the Court itself (as …