Judge Tells Apple He’s Had His Fill Of Frivolous Filings

In a courtroom statement that seems long overdue, Judge Richard A. Posner told Apple last Thursday that it’d better smarten up. It seems Judge Posner has heard one too many nitpicky, trivial and petty motions based on technicalities and minutiae during patent battles against Motorola (which will go to court this June). Released to public record yesterday, here are his exact words:

I deny Apple’s motion (seeking prohibition of the deposition) as frivolous and the first half (seeking substitution) as untimely. I’ve had my fill of frivolous filings by Apple. The next such motion, I shall forbid it to file any motions without first moving for leave of file.

The particulars of Apple’s motion aren’t fully known, but FOSS Patents offers a bit of educated insight:

What I understand from the order is that Apple brought a motion to prevent Motorola from deposing a particular expert. Apparently the judge denied a similar with respect to the same expert only a few days before. Apple came back and claimed that health problems of Mr. C’s wife had just cast doubt on his ability to testify at the June trial. I am calling him “Mr. C” here because this here because of the context and because his full name isn’t relevant to this post. Judge Posner actually doesn’t take the health story at face value: “Apple is now attempting to use the medical problem of [Mr. C]’s wife to block the deposition.”

Posner doesn’t just take issue with Apple wasting his time; he also slapped Motorola on the wrist for being similarly petty (his words, in fact, were “ridiculous” and that “Motorola seems to have forgotten that this is a jury trial”). The bottom line is that Posner doesn’t seem to take a lot of crap, and his refusal to indulge meaningless time-wasting silliness is a good sign for those of us who are sick of patent disputes.Source: FOSS Patents


Corey has been been a tech journalist with a focus on Apple since 1998 and has written for The Loop, MacHome magazine, and as games contributor for The Mac Bible, and co-hosts the iGame Radio Podcast. He works as a… Full Bio