Whirlpool files lawsuit in Eastern Texas alleging infringement of 10 million series patent


U.S. Patent No. 10,000,000 just issued June 19, 2018, and within a matter of days a patent in the 10 million series was already being enforced. On July 3, 2018, the day the patent issued, Whirlpool Corporation filed a patent infringement lawsuit in the United States Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.

Despite those who claim that only patent trolls file lawsuits in the Eastern District of Texas, it is Whirlpool Corporation that has brought a patent infringement lawsuit seeking to enforce U.S. Patent No. 10,010,820, which relates to a water filtration system, against defendant, Space Flex International, LLC. There are some who have always believed that operating companies simply never sue in the Eastern District of Texas, but those widely held beliefs are simply incorrect. Indeed, those familiar with Whirlpool’s enforcement strategy know well that the company regularly utilizes the Eastern District of Texas.

In this case, Whirlpool also alleges that the defendant, Space Flex International, a Rancho Cucamonga, CA corporation that has consented to jurisdiction and venue in the Eastern Distirct of Texas, is infringing U.S. Patent Nos. 7,00,894, 8,591,736, and 9,937,451. The complaint filed explains that both the ‘894 and ‘763 patents have withstood numerous validity and enforceability challenges. The ‘451 patent, as well as the ‘820 patent, as you would expect from their relatively young age, have not been challenged yet and will see their first action on behalf of Whirlpool in this case.

Whirlpool is seeking a preliminary and permanent injunction preventing Space Flex from engaging in infringing activities, a judgment that infringement has been willful, and a finding that the case is exceptional. Whirlpool is also seeking attorneys’ fees, as well as pre- and post-judgment interest in the event they prevail. A jury trial has been demanded.

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