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Arlington Industries, Inc. v. Bridgeport Fittings

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA


March 10, 2010

ARLINGTON INDUSTRIES, INC., PLAINTIFF
v.
BRIDGEPORT FITTINGS, INC., DEFENDANT
BRIDGEPORT FITTINGS, INC., CONSOLIDATED PLAINTIFF
v.
ARLINGTON INDUSTRIES, INC., CONSOLIDATED DEFENDANT

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Judge Conner

ORDER

AND NOW, this 10th day of March, 2010, upon consideration of the motion (Doc. 646) for attorney fees, filed by Arlington Industries, Incorporated ("Arlington"), wherein Arlington seeks reasonable fees and costs which it incurred prosecuting the above-captioned matter, and recognizing that reasonable attorney fees may be awarded to the prevailing party only in "exceptional cases," 35 U.S.C. § 285, that "[t]he court examines first whether there is clear and convincing evidence that the case is exceptional, and second, whether an award of attorney fees to the prevailing party is warranted," Evident Corp. v. Church & Dwight Co., Inc., 399 F.3d 1310, 1315 (Fed. Cir. 2005), and that only a "limited universe of circumstances warrant a finding of exceptionality in a patent case," including "'inequitable conduct before the PTO; litigation misconduct; vexatious, unjustified, and otherwise bad faith litigation; a frivolous suit or willful infringement,'" Wedgetail, Ltd. v. Huddleston Deluxe, Inc., 576 F.3d 1302, 1304 (Fed. Cir. 2009) (quoting Epcon Gas Sys., Inc. v. Bauer Compressors, Inc., 279 F.3d 1022, 1034 (Fed. Cir. 2002)); see also Revlon, Inc. v. Carson Prods. Co., 803 F.2d 676, 679 (Fed. Cir. 1986) (explaining that attorney fees are appropriate in order to "avoid a gross injustice"), and the court concluding that Bridgeport Fittings, Incorporated ("Bridgeport") did not engage in litigation misconduct,*fn1 that it did not seek a declaratory judgment of non-infringement in bad faith,*fn2 and that it engaged in no other conduct which warrants a finding of exceptionality,*fn3 it is hereby ORDERED that the motion (Doc. 646) for attorney fees is DENIED.

CHRISTOPHER C. CONNER United States District Judge


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