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Cantor Colburn’s Cass quoted on Supreme Court decision

April 2014

Law360 quoted Cantor Colburn’s William J. Cass on the Supreme Court decision that “the Federal Circuit's standards for awarding attorneys' fees to prevailing parties in "unreasonable" patent infringement cases must be eased.”

The high court ruled this decision over Highmark Inc. v. Allcare Health Management Systems Inc. and Octane Fitness LLC v. Icon Health & Fitness Inc. on Tuesday of that week.  Cass’s quote was included to cover why the Supreme Court’s verdict matters.  

 “Previously an ‘exceptional case,’ warranting attorneys’ fees, was confined to extreme situations involving clear and convincing evidence of either some material inappropriate conduct, or both subjective bad faith and objectively baseless litigation. Under Octane Fitness’ new flexible definition, the court, in its discretion, must apply a totality of the circumstances analysis to determine whether the case stands apart with respect to either the strength of the litigation position or the unreasonable manner in which the case was litigated. Furthermore, Highmark requires appellate review of an award of attorneys’ fees under an ‘abuse of discretion’ standard, resulting in a powerful remedy which is more difficult to challenge.”

Cass is a partner and co-chair of the Litigation Department at Cantor Colburn. He has litigated and tried cases in state and federal courts since 1988, which have involved patents, copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets, and products liability.

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