United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Lafayette Division
TOTAL REBUILD, INC.
PHC FLUID POWER, L.L.C.
B. WHITEHURST, MAG. JUDGE.
A. DOUGHTY, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
a patent infringement case in which Plaintiff Total Rebuild
(“Plaintiff”) contends systems and/or methods
utilized by or through Defendant PHC
(“Defendant”) infringe claims 1 through 19 of
United States Patent No. 8, 146, 428 (“the '428
Patent”). The '428 Patent is directed to systems
and methods for safely testing devices and components under
before the Court is Defendant's “Motion in
Limine Regarding Systems with Testing Equipment Outside
of Housing” [Doc. No. 207], and Defendant's
“Motion in Limine Regarding Sales and
Revenue” [Doc. No. 209]. Plaintiff responded to the
motions. [Doc. No. 219]. Defendant filed a reply. [Doc. No.
following reasons, the motions are GRANTED IN PART and DENIED
PERTINENT FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
moves to preclude Plaintiff from offering evidence that
Defendant has directly or indirectly infringed claims 3, 4,
5, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 18, and/or 19 of the '428 Patent
by making, using, selling, offering for sale, and/or
importing a safety system in which the high-pressure testing
equipment is located outside an explosion proof housing.
[Doc. No. 208 at 1]. Similarly, Defendant moves to exclude
and preclude Plaintiff from offering evidence of sales and
revenues of Defendant for systems that do not have testing
equipment within or inside explosion-proof safety housing.
Plaintiff has alleged that Defendant has directly or
indirectly infringed claims 3, 4, 5, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 18,
and/or 19 of the '428 Patent by making, using, selling,
offering for sale, and/or importing a safety system for
testing high-pressure devices in which the high-pressure
testing equipment is located outside an explosion proof
housing. [Doc. Bo. 209-1 at 1].
argues that the clear language of the claims requires the
high-pressure testing equipment to be located
“within” an explosion-proof safety housing or
placed in an explosion proof safety housing. [Doc. No. 208 at
1, Doc. No. 209-1 at 1]. Defendant contends that safety
systems in which the high-pressure testing equipment is
located outside the housing is not relevant under Rule 401 of
the Federal Rules of Evidence, and should be excluded as
inadmissible under Rule 402 of the Federal Rules of Evidence.
[Doc. No. 208 at 1-2, Doc. No. 209-1 at 2]. Defendant further
contends that such evidence should also be excluded under
Rule 403 of the Federal Rules of Evidence, because it would
be confusing to jurors, mislead the jury, cause undue delay,
and waste time because the jury would need to review system,
listen to days of testimony, and review exhibits that cannot
result in liability. [Doc. No. 208 at 2].
replies that Defendant's motions seek to improperly
construe the plain and ordinary meaning of the uncontested
term “high-pressure pneumatics testing equipment”
in the '428 Patent. [Doc. No. 219 at 1]. Plaintiff argues
that Defendant is attempting to improperly narrow the meaning
of “high-pressure pneumatics testing equipment”
in the '428 Patent claims by reading the limitations of
dependent claims into the interpretation of their independent
base claims. Id.
replies that Plaintiff is precluded from offering theories of
infringement wherein the pump of the pressure testing system
is outside of the safety housing, because Plaintiff did not
disclose those theories until after the close of discovery
and over three years after its infringement contentions were
due. [Doc. No. 240 at 2]. Defendant argues that Plaintiff
should be precluded from asserting that “high-pressure
pneumatics testing equipment” includes components such
as hoses, tubes, and piping. Id. at 11.
LAW AND ANALYSIS
direct infringement, a patent owner must prove either literal
infringement or infringement by the doctrine of equivalents.
A product literally infringes a patent if each element of the
patent claim is contained in the accused product. See,
e.g., N. Am. Vaccine, Inc. v. Am. Cyanamid Co., 7 F.3d
1571, 1574 (Fed. Cir. 1993). The test for infringement under
the doctrine of equivalents determines “whether [the
accused product] performs the function in substantially the
same way to achieve substantially the same result.”
Minks v. Polaris Indus., Inc., 546 F.3d 1364, 1378
(Fed. Cir. 2008).
Court's analysis proceeds and is informed by the
Court's “RULING AND ORDER granting 243 Motion to
Strike 242 Total Rebuild Inc's Third Supplemental
Infringement Contentions” [Doc. No. 263]. On February
28, 2019, Defendant filed a “Motion to Strike or,
Alternatively, for Construction of Term at Markman
Hearing” [Doc. No. 243]. Plaintiff filed an opposition
on March 20, 2019. [Doc. No. 253]. Defendant filed a reply on
March 28, 2019. [Doc. No. 262]. On that same day, the Court
granted Defendant's Motion to Strike. [Doc. No. 263].
Order granting Defendant's Motion to Strike, the Court
found that Plaintiff was improperly trying to expand its
infringement contention by taking the new position that
“using pumps or pump systems outside an
explosion-safety housing can infringe its patent.”
[Doc. No. 263 at 2] (emphasis in original). The Court noted
that Plaintiff “does not dispute that its latest
contentions ‘vastly expand' its claims or that it
failed to serve the contentions until December 2018.”
Id. Instead, Plaintiff argued that its
supplementation was timely because the Court has not adopted
the proposed scheduling order (Doc. 162-1) and local rules
allow it to amend its contentions as late as 30 ...