"Customer defendant" characterization helps Nikon avoid costly protracted litigation and trial
Finnegan obtained an early stay and a subsequent voluntary dismissal for Nikon Corporation and Nikon Inc. in a multi-party patent infringement suit, thus limiting Nikon's involvement in a litigation filed by Honeywell International Inc. and Honeywell Intellectual Properties, Inc. Honeywell filed a series of suits against 30+ corporations claiming infringement of a patent directed to LCD modules. Nikon was accused of infringement in one of the suits, even though it was not a manufacturer of the LCD modules used in its digital still cameras. Characterizing Nikon as a "customer defendant," we filed a successful motion to stay the litigation with respect to Nikon. During the stay, Honeywell eventually settled with the defendants that were LCD suppliers for Nikon's cameras, allowing for Nikon's dismissal from the litigation based on the fact that Nikon was protected by Honeywell's settlements with Nikon's suppliers.