Verasonics, Inc. v. Alpinion Medical Systems Co., Ltd.

Filing 40

ORDER granting Plaintiff's 32 Motion to confirm arbitration award. Signed by U.S. District Judge John C Coughenour. (PM)

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THE HONORABLE JOHN C. COUGHENOUR 1 2 3 4 5 6 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT WESTERN DISTRICT OF WASHINGTON AT SEATTLE 7 8 9 10 11 VERASONICS, INC., a Washington corporation, Plaintiff, v. CASE NO. C14-1820-JCC ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO CONFIRM ARBITRATION AWARD 12 13 ALPINION MEDICAL SYSTEMS CO., LTD, a Korean corporation, 14 Defendant. 15 16 This matter comes before the Court on Plaintiff Verasonics, Inc.’s unopposed motion to 17 confirm arbitration (Dkt. No. 32). Having thoroughly considered the briefing and the relevant 18 record, the Court finds oral argument unnecessary and hereby GRANTS the motion for the 19 reasons explained herein. 20 In June 2016, arbitrator John Fellas heard Verasonics’ claims against Defendant Alpinion 21 Medical Systems for (1) breach of non-disclosure agreements (NDAs), (2) breach of a “Lease 22 and Non-Exclusive License Agreement,” and (3) violation of the Washington Uniform Trade 23 Secrets Act. (Dkt. No. 32 at 2–3.) On March 2, 2017, Mr. Fellas determined that Alpinion 24 violated the NDAs and lease agreements, granted injunctive relief in Verasonics’ favor and 25 awarded it monetary damages of $2,914,000.00, and denied or dismissed all remaining claims 26 except that for attorney fees. (Id. at 2.) ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO CONFIRM ARBITRATION AWARD PAGE - 1 1 Under the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA), if a party to an arbitration asks the appropriate 2 U.S. District Court “for an order confirming the [arbitration] award, . . . the court must grant 3 such an order unless the award is vacated, modified, or corrected as prescribed in sections 10 and 4 11 of this title.” 9 U.S.C. § 9. The Court’s review of an arbitration award is narrow: sections 10 5 and 11 of the FAA permit a federal court to 6 7 8 correct a technical error, [] strike all or a portion of an award pertaining to an issue not at all subject to arbitration, [or] vacate an award that evidences affirmative misconduct in the arbitral process or the final result or that is completely irrational or exhibits a manifest disregard for the law. 9 Kyocera Corp. v. Prudential-Bache Trade Services, Inc., 341 F.3d 987, 997–98 (9th Cir. 2003). 10 None of the conditions permitting vacation, modification, or correction of the award are 11 present here. There is no evidence of technical errors, issues beyond the scope of arbitration, 12 affirmative misconduct, or an arbitral process or result that is irrational or disregards the law. 13 Alpinion does not oppose this motion and thus raises no argument to the contrary. The Court 14 confirms the award under the FAA. 15 The Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (New 16 York Convention) governs confirmation of foreign arbitral awards. June 10, 1958, 21 U.S.T. 17 2517. The Court “shall confirm the [arbitration] award unless it finds one of the grounds for 18 refusal or deferral of recognition or enforcement of the award specified in the said Convention.” 19 9 U.S.C. § 207. Under the New York Convention, seven grounds exist for refusal or deferral of 20 enforcement. New York Convention art. V. “These defenses are construed narrowly, and the party 21 opposing recognition or enforcement bears the burden of establishing that a defense applies.” 22 Ministry of Defense and Support for the Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran v. Cubic 23 Defense Systems, Inc., 665 F.3d 1090, 1096 (9th Cir. 2011). Alpinion did not oppose the motion and 24 thus does not show that a defense applies. The Court confirms the award under the New York 25 Convention. 26 ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO CONFIRM ARBITRATION AWARD PAGE - 2 1 In sum, the motion to confirm the arbitration award (Dkt. No. 32) is GRANTED. The 2 Clerk is DIRECTED to enter judgment in favor of Verasonics and against Alpinion in 3 accordance with the terms of the arbitration award. 4 DATED this 19th day of May, 2017. 7 A 8 John C. Coughenour UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 5 6 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO CONFIRM ARBITRATION AWARD PAGE - 3

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