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    USITC Section 337 Investigations

    Straddling the intersection of intellectual property and trade law, Section 337 investigations demand a multi-disciplined approach that very few law firms can provide. Our Section 337 practice team offers the rare combination of intellectual property litigation experience coupled with deep international trade and policy know-how necessary for the optimal handling of this fast-moving and complex form of administrative litigation.

    Our Intellectual Property & Technology Practice comprises lawyers who litigate intellectual property cases in US district courts and at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), as well as at the International Trade Commission (ITC) under Section 337. The litigation experience of these professionals extends to a wide variety of technologies, including biotechnology, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, computer hardware and software, industrial automation, semiconductors, communication systems, consumer goods, automotive components and systems, tire and rubber, aerospace and avionics, industrial processes and chemical compositions. All told, our collective experience litigating intellectual property issues in district courts, the ITC and PTAB proceedings exceeds 250 matters. With regard to Section 337 in particular, our IP litigation professionals have been involved in several recent investigations before three ITC administrative law judges, including the various investigation phases (discovery, trial and petition for review). Included among the practice team are lawyers who worked at the ITC and a lawyer who is a past president and current Executive Committee member of the bar association dedicated to Section 337 (the ITC Trial Lawyers Association (ITCTLA)).

    Our international trade and public policy lawyers complement the technical and litigation skills of the Intellectual Property & Technology Practice in providing comprehensive client service in these investigations. Our international trade lawyers have extensive knowledge concerning the economic issues that can arise in Section 337 domestic industry analysis and a deep understanding of the US Customs procedures applicable to ITC exclusion order enforcement. Our public policy professionals provide especially valuable counsel at the initiation phase of these investigations, where foreign governments are notified and the public interest is evaluated, and at the Presidential review stage, where the office of the United States Trade Representative may become involved.

    We pride ourselves in our ability to provide an interdisciplinary approach to counselling our clients in Section 337 investigations, drawing upon the unique experience of our intellectual property, international trade, and public policy lawyers throughout the firm at the various stages, as necessary and appropriate.

    • Certain Stainless Steel Products, Certain Processes for Manufacturing or Relating to Same, and Certain Products Containing Same (337-TA-933) (2015) (Essex) – Represented major US metals distributor in a trade secrets-based investigation resulting in termination of distributor from the investigation and no remedy issued against it.
    • Certain Compact Fluorescent Reflector Lamps and Products Containing Same and Components Thereof (337-TA-872) (2014) (Shaw) – Represented lighting distribution respondents in petition phase of patent-based investigation, which resulted in ITC reversing ALJ’s violation finding. Affirmed on appeal.
    • Certain Dimmable Compact Fluorescent Lamps and Products Containing Same (Inv. No. 337-TA-830) (2013) (Pender) – Represented largest US CFL distributor in patent-based investigation involving dimmable lighting circuitry resulting in ALJ finding of no violation on multiple grounds, including lack of domestic industry and non-infringement. Case later settled on favorable terms.
    • Certain Probe Card Assemblies, Components Thereof and Certain Tested DRAM and NAND Flash Memory Devices and Products Containing Same (337-TA-621) (2009) (Bullock) –Represented Japanese importer in patent-based investigation involving competitors and five patents on semiconducting test equipment. The ITC found no violation on multiple grounds, including lack of domestic industry, invalidity, and non-infringement.
    • Certain Power Supply Controllers and Products Containing Same (337-TA-541) (2006) (Luckern) – Represented complainant in patent-based investigation involving semiconductor transistor technology. The ITC found a violation and entered an exclusion order against downstream products, which the Federal Circuit affirmed on appeal. 
    • Certain Pool Cues With Self-Aligning Joint Assemblies (337-TA-536) (2005) (Harris) – Represented Taiwanese respondent and seven US importers in a patent-based investigation. The ITC found no violation after affirming ALJ’s grant of summary determination of non-infringement.