Flowrider Surf, Ltd. et al v. Pacific Surf Designs, Inc.
ORDER Denying Defendant's Request for Entry of Partial Final Judgment. Signed by Judge Roger T. Benitez on 6/13/2017.(knb)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
FLOWRIDER SURF, LTD., a Canadian
corporation, and SURF WAVES, LTD., a
company incorporated in the United
Case No.: 3:15-cv-01879-BEN-BLM
ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT’S
REQUEST FOR ENTRY OF
PARTIAL FINAL JUDGMENT
PACIFIC SURF DESIGNS, INC., a
AND RELATED COUNTERCLAIMS.
On May 26, 2017, this Court dismissed U.S. Patent No. 6,491,589 (the “’589
Patent”) and Plaintiff FlowRider Surf, Ltd. for lack of standing and stayed the rest of the
case while U.S. Patent No. 8,088,016 (the “’016 Patent”) undergoes inter partes review
with the Patent Trial and Appeal Board of the U.S. Patent Office. (Order, ECF No. 222).
Defendant Pacific Surf Designs, Inc. (“PSD”) now requests that the Court enter judgment
regarding the ’589 Patent. (See Notice, ECF No. 226).
The district court may enter separate judgment in a case involving multiple parties
or multiple claims pursuant to Rule 54(b) when “there is no just reason for delay.” Fed. R.
Civ. P. 54(b). The Ninth Circuit has indicated that entry of partial judgment should not be
granted as a matter of course but rather “reserved for the unusual case in which the costs
and risks of multiplying the number of proceedings and of overcrowding the appellate
docket are outbalanced by pressing needs of the litigants for an early and separate judgment
as to some claims or parties.” Morrison-Knudsen Co., Inc. v. Archer, 655 F.2d 962, 965
(9th Cir. 1981).
Here, PSD seeks judgment as to the dismissed claim of infringement of the ’589
Patent so that it may seek its attorneys’ fees for litigating that claim. But Plaintiff’s claim
for infringement of the ‘016 Patent remains in the case, as do PSD’s counterclaims.
Entering judgment on the ’589 Patent now and allowing PSD to move for its attorneys’
fees could result in duplicative litigation—PSD may later move for its attorneys’ fees on
the remaining claims. Moreover, Plaintiffs could appeal the Court’s order on the motion
to dismiss now, while additional appeals might be made once the remainder of the litigation
concludes. This would result in piecemeal appeals. The Court is not convinced that this
is such an “unusual case” justifying the entry of partial final judgment.
The Court DENIES PSD’s request for entry of partial final judgment.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Dated: June 13, 2017
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