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Maytag Wins Markman VictoryJanuary 3, 2005

The first disputed contest in most patent cases is a so-called ‘Markman Hearing’. This means an initial hearing before the Judge where he or she defines the metes and bounds of the patent, much like a deed defines the metes and bounds of your real estate boundaries. A bad decision at this stage can mean that a patent owner has already lost the case for reasons of non-infringement. For further details on this subject, see Ed Sease’s essay, MARKMAN MISSES THE MARK, MISERABLY which will be published in the University of Illinois Journal of Law Technology and Policy in the near future.In Maytag vs. Whirlpool, Chief Judge Longstaff of the Southern District of Iowa decided in his November 23, 2004 ruling and order that Maytag’s view of the correct metes and bounds of its patent on ice dispensers for refrigerators was correct. The oral argument on behalf of Maytag was presented by Jeff Harty which followed extensive briefing by our litigation team. Kirkland & Ellis, one of Chicago’s largest law firms, represented Whirlpool. According to Jeff Harty, this case is set for trial July 11, 2005. MVS is pleased that the Court adopted our and Maytag’s assertions.

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