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Mar 10, 2022Legal
Patexia Insight 127: 2022 Best Performing Defendants and Plaintiffs in Patent Litigation

Last month we released the second edition of our Patent Litigation Intelligence Report, a study that covered 14,506 patent cases filed over the last four years, from July 1, 2017, through June 30, 2021.

As per our tradition, we examine and provide high-level statistics related to district court patent litigation as well as the rankings of each entity based on their activity and performance for each of the categories: defendant, plaintiff and overall.

Two weeks ago we covered the most active companies, evaluated based on the number of cases they appeared as well as the number of patents involved in those cases (Patexia Insight 126). In this week’s insight we are going to cover the best performing defendants and plaintiffs as well as explaining our ranking methodology used for evaluating the performance metric.

As shown above, out of the total of 12,116 patent cases that were terminated as of December 31, 2021, a total of 9,643 or 79.6%, have a dismissal status for different reasons. Meanwhile a relatively small number of cases, (i.e., 837 out of 12,116 or 6.9%) went to a judgment of some kind. The majority of plaintiffs aim for a quick resolution of the case and this explains the reasons for popular settlement status. However, once the case is filed, things may not always go as planned. Defendants go after different strategies (e.g., file an IPR petition, etc.)

PACER differentiates between different dismissal motives and we use that in our ranking. While a case is always dismissed after granting a motion from one of the parties, there is a difference between the voluntary dismissal and the settlement. This difference has also impacted the ranking methodology used in our reports including the Patent Litigation Intelligence Report.

 

OutcomePlaintiffDefendantPlain. Atty/FirmDef. Atty/Firm
Judgment - Defendant Wins

0

101
Judgment - Plaintiff Wins1010
Judgment - Plaintiff + Settlement0.750.250.750.25
Judgment - Settlement (Confidential)0.50.50.50.5
Judgment - Dismissed, no Jurisdiction0101
Judgment - Voluntarily Dismissed by Party(ies)0.250.750.250.75
Dismissed - Voluntarily0101
Dismissed - Settled (no IPR petition)0.50.50.50.5
Dismissed - Settled (IPR denied)0.750.250.750.25
Dismissed - Settled (IPR, settled pre-Institution)0.250.750.250.75
Dismissed - Settled (IPR, settled post-Institution, pre-trial)0.250.750.250.75
Dismissed - Settled (IPR, < 50% claims survive)0.250.750.250.75
Dismissed - Settled (IPR, > 50% claims survive)0.750.250.750.25
Dismissed - Other0101

 

As seen in the above table, we have paid attention to various judgment statuses and differentiated them depending on the side that had a better outcome overall. Also we separated the non-scorable cases where there was no clear winner or loser in the case. This was quite different from the settlement status that often has confidential terms, unknown to the public. When it comes to settlements we always bear in mind that in many cases they are the objective of plaintiff sides which prefer a quick settlement instead of a lengthy litigation ending in judgment where you never know which will be the winning side. 

The PACER outcomes however, are not all sufficient to learn more about the practical outcome of a case. The judgment outcomes for example don't show us which side ultimately won the case so we needed to manually review some categories of cases in order to develop our scoring system which would then lead to the performance rankings.

The responses from the surveys we conducted and other input related to scoring methodology from the community, provided invaluable insights. 

The following tables summarizes the top 5 companies in the overall, defendant and plaintiff categories:

 

Overall Performance RankCompanyOverall Performance Score
1

Canon

100.00%

2Oakley, Inc.99.30%
3

Amazon

93.25%

4AT&T Company92.84%
5

Verizon

92.04%

 

Defendant Performance RankCompanyDefendant Performance Score
1

Netflix

100.00%

2Volkswagen92.99%
3

City of Hope

88.61%

4Hulu85.26%
5

Xilinx

84.93%

 

Plaintiff Performance RankCompanyPlaintiff Performance Score
1

Canon

100.00%

2Oakley, Inc.99.80%
3

Seoul Semiconductor Co Ltd

98.19%

4Seoul Viosys98.19%
5

Nike

91.39%

 

To calculate the performance scores we did not focus simply on the success of companies in litigation. There is a clear difference between a company that wins one case out of one in total and another that wins 10 cases out of 11.

In order to reflect this difference and provide fair rankings we developed the performance score as a weighted average of both Activity and Success scores. This  way we make the comparison between different entities with different workloads more practical. This becomes more important when it comes to law firms and attorneys as the activity among entities are substantial.

In the next few weeks we plan to cover some of the best performing and most active law firms as well as attorneys based on our Patent Litigation Report 2022. Stay tuned.

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