AT&T, Apple And Other Defendants Win Motion To Dismiss Claims Of Indirect Infringement Even Though Claims Satisfied Form 18

Garnet Digital sued AT&T, Apple and several other defendants for patent infringement and included a claim for indirect infringement. Garnet Digital accused all of the defendants of infringing U.S. Patent No. 5,379,421, which is entitled "Interactive Terminal for the Access of Remote Database Information." Garnet Digital made the same allegation against each of the defendants, as follows: "[Defendant] directly or through intermediaries, made, had made, used , imported, provided, supplied, distributed, sold, and/or offered for sale products and/or systems (including at least [Defendant's product(s)]) that infringed one or more claims of he 421 patnet, and/or induced infringement and/or contributed to the infringement of one or more of the claims of the 421 patent by its customers."

AT&T and Apple, as well a many of the other defendants, moved to dismiss the indirect infringement claims. Verizon and other defendants also moved to dismiss the patent infringement claims. Both motions were made pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b(6) and the AT&T, Apple motion asserted that the indirect infringement claims did not comply with Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Verizon asserted that the direct infringement claims were insufficient because they did not identify the patent claims asserted, they failed to identify products or services and failed to identify how accused products provide the claimed functionality to perform the claimed method. Garnet Digital responded by claiming that its complaint satisfied Rule 8 and specifically Form 18.

The district court summarized the applicable law as follows: "The central issue is whether, in the light most favorable to the plaintiff, the complaint states a valid claim for relief. Id. at 1356 (internal quotations omitted); Doe v. MySpace, Inc., 528 F.3d 413, 418 (5th Cir. 2008). Under Rule 8(a)(2), a pleading must contain 'a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief'" Fed.R. Civ. P. 8(a)(2). A complaint attacked by a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss does not need detailed factual allegations, but a plaintiff must plead sufficient factual allegations to show that he is plausibly entitled to relief. Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555-56, 570 (2007) ('[W]e do not require heightened fact pleading of specifics, but only enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on it face.'); see also Aschcrof v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 679-680, 684 (2009)...

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