Affirmative Defenses

News & Analysis as of

District Court Denies Request to Have Invalidity Case Proceed Prior to Infringement Case

The parties in this patent infringement action could not agree on the order of proof at trial. Defendants sought to present their invalidity defense first, arguing that if the patent is invalid, they could not be liable for...more

Preference Defendants, Rejoice! Services Billed in a Lump Sum Can Be Allocated Per Diem, for Your New Value Defense

Preference actions are, for the most part, insanity. We won’t go on a tirade here. But recently, a ruling brings common sense to the “new value” defense....more

District Court Strikes Affirmative Defenses of Laches, Waiver, Estoppel and Acquiescence for Lack of Sufficient Detail

After the plaintiff filed a Second Amended Complaint against Fieldpiece Instruments, Inc. ("Defendant") for patent infringement, the Defendant filed its an answer raising a series of affirmative defenses to Plaintiff's...more

EPA Continues to Dismantle Clean Air Act Affirmative Defenses — Blame It On the Judge(s)

On Wednesday, EPA published certain amendments to the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards in the Federal Register. EPA describes most of the changes as “technical corrections,” but there is one important substantive change. ...more

Price Tag for Patent Invalidity Ruling in Inequitable Conduct Case is $26 Million - TransWeb, LLC v. 3M Innovative Properties Co.

Affirming a ruling of invalidity and an antitrust damages award of trebled attorneys’ fees in a patent abuse case, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit highlighted the severe penalties that may befall patent owners...more

Preemption prevails in watercraft case under Federal Boat Safety Act

For vehicle manufacturers that find themselves in state court facing product liability claims over safety mechanisms, federal preemption is frequently examined as an affirmative defense. Watercraft manufacturers, in...more

Defending Against Insider Trading Claims

No corporate legal issue captures public attention quite like insider trading. These cases epitomize the worst stereotypes of Wall Street and often involve high-profile individuals. Government prosecutors and securities...more

The Fair Labor Standards Act Statute of Limitations Limits Employer Liability: Except When It Doesn't

About a year ago, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit held in Cruz v. Maypa, 773 F.3d 138 (4th Cir. 2014), a decision that has received little attention, that an employer covered by the Fair Labor...more

Design Immunity for Public Agencies Clarified by California Supreme Court

Decision touches on a crucial issue in public agency tort defense - A crucial issue in public agency tort defense was recently clarified by the California Supreme Court in Hampton v. County of San Diego. While a public...more

EU Sanctions: Commercial and Contract Risks

Sanctions programmes are established and developed as a political response to international relations developments; yet they impose significant obligations on commercial entities in terms of compliance. They may interfere...more

California’s New Piece-Rate Compensation Requirements and a New Affirmative Defense Take Effect January 1, 2016

On October 10, 2015, California Governor Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 1513, which added new requirements with regard to employees who work on a piece-rate basis. The new law, which amends California Labor Code section...more

California’s Auto-Renewal Law Leads to Wave of California Consumer Class Actions

California’s Auto-Renewal Law (Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 17600 et seq.) has given rise to a recent torrent of new lawsuits in California, many brought on a putative class action basis, targeting businesses that offer...more

Begin with the End in Mind: Collaboration with Outside Counsel in Preparing Trial-Ready Initial Pleadings

If there is a secret to effective business litigation, it is planning early and well – as early as preparing the complaint or, for defendants, their answer and defenses. While a cogent, powerful opening pleading has always...more

Court Rules on Antitrust Claims Arising from Changes to Electricity Pricing Plans for Home Solar Users

A federal court allowed certain antitrust and state law claims brought by an installer of distributed solar energy systems against Arizona’s Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement and Power District (SRP) to move forward...more

Government contractor industry brief urges Fourth Circuit to reaffirm “battlefield contractor” tort-suit defenses

On October 29, 2015, Dentons filed an amicus brief with the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals on behalf of its clients, the Professional Services Council—The Voice of the Government Services Industry and the Coalition for...more

The Katten Kattwalk - Issue 08

The Katten Kattwalk discusses legal issues in the fashion industry affecting the trademarks, patents and copyrights associated with companies, brands and products. Letter From the Editor - Fashion Week has come and...more

Premises Liability Claims at the Ballpark

When you attend a baseball game with your family, are you at risk of sustaining a serious injury? If you do get hurt, can you bring a premises liability lawsuit, alleging that the owner of the stadium or the team was...more

New OFCCP changes to federal contractor pay practices

September was a busy month for federal contractors due to new regulatory requirements. Earlier last month, we told you about President Obama’s new executive order requiring covered government contractors to provide their...more

Despite Ruling, Free Speech Statute Continues To Offers Some Defenses

In two prior posts this week I talked about the significance of a new Connecticut Supreme Court case that has expanded the free speech rights of employees in the workplace. But do employers have any other defenses to...more

Ninth Circuit Clarifies Copyright Holder’s Responsibility When Sending A Takedown Notice Under The DMCA

In July, this author wrote about Lenz v. Universal which, at the time, was pending before the 9th Circuit. On September 14, 2015 the 9th Circuit came down with a ruling which answered whether a copyright owner must consider...more

The Changing Compensation Landscape for Government Contractors: New Executive Order Mandates Paid Sick Leave for Employees of...

Two recent developments have added to the list of the Obama Administration’s compensation-related initiatives. On Labor Day, September 7, 2015, President Obama issued an Executive Order that will require federal contractors...more

4 Defenses to Employee Defamation Claims

The Recorder reports an uptick in defamation claims by fired employees. These claims are often in the form of plaintiffs saying that their bosses gave others false reasons for their firing. These types of claims strike fear...more

Intellectual Property Alert: Laches Remains a Defense to Legal Relief in Patent Infringement Suits

On September 18, 2015, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, sitting en banc, ruled (6-5) in SCA Hygiene Products AB et al. v. First Quality Baby Products LLC et al., that laches remains a viable defense in a patent...more

Intellectual Property Alert: DMCA Takedowns Require Consideration of Fair Use

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has held that copyright holders must at least consider fair use before issuing a takedown notice under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). The decision, in Lenz v....more

Does Asserting a "Good Faith" Affirmative Defense Waive the Attorney-Client Privilege?: Part II

Other courts take a different view. In Bacchi v. Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co., defendant resisting a policyholder class action filed affirmative defenses "that it acted in good faith . . . and that its actions were...more

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