United States District Court, D. Delaware
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
F. Bataillon, Senior United States District Judge
matter is before the Court on the parties' motions in
limine (D.I. 430-3, D.I. 430-4, D.I. 430-5, D.I. 430-6, D.I.
430-7 and D.I. 430-8). This is an action for patent
infringement that is set for trial on October 30, 2018.
the motion in limine is an important tool available to the
trial judge to ensure the expeditious and evenhanded
management of the trial proceedings, performing a gatekeeping
function and sharpening the focus for later trial
proceedings, some evidentiary submissions, cannot be
evaluated accurately or sufficiently by the trial judge in
such a procedural environment. Jonasson v. Lutheran Child
and Family Servs., 115 F.3d 436, 440 (7th Cir. 1997). A
motion in limine is appropriate for “evidentiary
submissions that clearly ought not be presented to the jury
because they clearly would be inadmissible for any
purpose.” Id. In other instances, it is
necessary to defer ruling until during trial, when the trial
judge can better estimate the impact of the evidence on the
jury. Id. “Evidentiary rulings made by a trial
court during motions in limine are preliminary and may change
depending on what actually happens at trial.”
Walzer v. St. Joseph State Hosp., 231 F.3d 1108,
1113 (8th Cir. 2000); see also Leonard v.
Stemtech Health Scis., Inc., 981 F.Supp.2d 273, 276 (D.
Del. 2013). (noting that evidentiary rulings, especially
those that encompass broad classes of evidence, should
generally be deferred until trial to allow for the resolution
of questions of foundation, relevancy, and potential
prejudice in proper context). To the extent that a party
challenges the probative value of the evidence, an attack
upon the probative sufficiency of evidence relates not to
admissibility but to the weight of the evidence and is a
matter for the trier of fact to resolve. United States v.
Beasley, 102 F.3d 1440, 1451(8th Cir. 1996).
PLAINTIFF IP BRIDGE'S MOTIONS
A. NO. 1: MOTION IN LIMINE TO EXCLUDE ANY ARGUMENT,
TESTIMONY, EVIDENCE, REFERENCE, OR SUGGESTION REGARDING ANY
ISSUE, CLAIM, CAUSE OF ACTION, OR FORM OF RELIEF THAT (1) IS
NO LONGER PART OF THE CASE, (2) HAS BEEN DECIDED BY THE
COURT, OR (3) IS TO BE DECIDED BY THE COURT, INCLUDING, BUT
NOT LIMITED TO, THE VALIDITY OF ANY CLAIM OF U.S. PATENT NO.
7, 373, 295, PANASONIC'S STATUS AS AN IMPROPERLY JOINED
PARTY, TCL'S NOW-DISMISSED ANTITRUST CLAIMS AGAINST IP
BRIDGE AND/OR PANASONIC, CLAIM CONSTRUCTION, AND SUMMARY
JUDGMENT (D.I. 430-3, Pretrial Order (“PTO”) Ex.
Bridge argues that because IP Bridge is no longer asserting
infringement of the '295 patent, reference to the
'295 patent would prejudice IP Bridge to an extent far
outweighed by any potential probative value under Federal
Rules of Evidence 403. TCL refers to IP Bridge's expert,
Dr. Kennedy's testimony that the fact that the Asserted
patents were chosen for assertion places them in a small
group of LTE SEP's across the industry and makes them
particularly valuable, and argues that TCL should be
permitted to reference the invalidity of the '295 patent
to rebut any inference that IP Bridge's assertion of a
claim makes it particularly valuable and to show a good faith
belief of invalidity.
Court agrees with the plaintiff that the evidence is largely
irrelevant and any potential relevance is outweighed by the
danger of unfair prejudice and confusion. Accordingly, the
motion is granted, subject to reconsideration if necessary on
cross-examination or in rebuttal. The defendant is advised to
alert the Court in advance of the offer of any such evidence.
plaintiff contends any reference to Panasonic's status as
an improperly joined party or to the dismissed counterclaims
should be excluded because these issues are no longer part of
this case. TCL states that it does not intend to refer to
antitrust claims previously asserted against IP Bridge and
Panasonic, or to Panasonic as a former party to the case.
Accordingly, this motion is denied as moot.
Bridge argues that any argument and testimony that is
inconsistent with the Court's claim construction (or that
questions or disparages it) should be precluded because claim
construction is a legal issue for the court, not the jury.
The defendant essentially concedes. Accordingly, the motion
is granted to the extent that any argument ...