Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

DATAQUILL LIMITED v. HANDSPRING

May 7, 2004.

DATAQUILL LIMITED, Plaintiff,
v.
HANDSPRING, INC., Defendant



The opinion of the court was delivered by: CHARLES KOCORAS, District Judge

MEMORANDUM OPINION

This matter comes before the court on the parties' motions in limine. Plaintiff DataQuill Limited ("DataQuill") and Defendant Handspring Incorporated ("Handspring") have each filed ten motions.

BACKGROUND

  DataQuill is the owner of U.S. Patent No. 6,058,304 ("the `304 patent") for a handheld data entry system. Its complaint alleges various infringement theories against Handspring, for products it manufactures, including those marketed under the names Treo and Visor. In February 2003, Handspring filed a motion for summary judgment, asserting both that the accused devices did not infringe the `304 patent and that the patent was invalid for a number of reasons. We granted summary judgment to Handspring on the issue of contributory infringement by the Visor products as well as invalidity of claims 61 and 62. For the remaining questions presented in the motion, we found that there were genuine issues of material fact.

  In conjunction with the filing of the final pretrial order, the parties have each filed ten motions in limine.

  LEGAL STANDARD

  The power to exclude evidence pursuant to motions in limine is part and parcel of a district court's authority to manage trials. Falk v. Kimberly Servs., 1997 WL 201568, * 1 (N.D. Ill. Apr. 16, 1997). Motions in limine should be granted only when the evidence under attack is clearly inadmissible on all potential grounds. Hawthorne Partners v. A.T. & T. Technologies, Inc., 831 F. Supp. 1398, 1400 (N.D. Ill. 1993). The admissibility of some proposed evidence cannot be determined without a proper frame of reference, and motions in limine pertaining to such evidence should be denied. See Tzoumis v. Tempel Steel Co., 168 F. Supp.2d 871, 873 (N.D. Ill. 2001). Of course, such a denial does not mandate that the subject evidence be admitted at trial; rather, it allows the court to address pertinent questions of admissibility within a proper context. Hawthorne Partners, 831 F. Supp. at 1400-01. Moreover, a district court can alter a previous ruling on a motion in limine. Luce v. U.S., 49 U.S. 38, 41-42, 105 S.Ct. 460 (1984). With these principles in mind, we address the motions before us. DISCUSSION

 A. DataQuill's Motions

 1. Motion to Exclude Undisclosed Invalidity Contentions and Related References

  This motion seeks to exclude certain exhibits illustrating prior art references. DataQuill contends that Handspring has never disclosed or articulated the relevance of these items to any of their invalidity contentions. Handspring claims are relevant to establishing the state of the art at the time of the invention, which directly pertains to their previously advanced theories of invalidity due to obviousness. Thus, it does not appear that the exhibits in question are unrelated to a contention already advanced, and the motion is accordingly denied.

 2. Motion to Exclude Testimony from Jeff Hawkins, Donna Dubinsky, and Edward Colligan

  DataQuilPs second motion is directed at the proposed testimony of three individuals: Jeff Hawkins, Donna Dubinsky, and Edward Colligan.*fn1 In support of its motion, DataQuill points to the absence of these names from Handspring's Rule 26(a) disclosure. While it does not appear that Handspring ever formally included these three in its disclosure, DataQuill admits that it had an opportunity to depose Hawkins and Dubinsky as well as Colligan's predecessor. In addition, DataQuill was not required to limit its deposition inquiry to any particular subjects. Thus, we conclude that there is no ground for wholesale exclusion of these witnesses from the stand. Consequently, DataQuill's second motion in limine is denied.

 3. Motion to Exclude Handspring's Patents

  DataQuilPs motion to exclude evidence of patents Handspring owns is denied. As Handspring points out, these are relevant to issues of willfulness. Furthermore, the concern that the jury will perceive the existence of Handspring's patents in an improper way is best ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.