by Dennis Crouch
Shure v. ClearOne (Fed. Cir. 2021)
I beforehand talked about this appellate case and the oral arguments remarks by Chief Judge Moore suggesting that ClearOne file a movement for sanctions towards Shure for bringing the appeal.
At the district courtroom, N.D. Ill. Judge Edmond Chang had issued a preliminary injunction prohibiting Shure from sure actions concerning its drop-ceiling microphone product. Later, Judge Chang discovered that Shure had violated the preliminary injunction. In its new opinion, the courtroom has dismissed the case, discovering that it lacks appellate jurisdiction over the interlocutory contempt order. ClearOne has additionally moved for sanctions.
Right to Appeal: Although a shedding celebration has a proper to appeal, the foundations of civil process strictly restrict the timing of appeals. Generally, a shedding celebration has a proper to appeal solely after the case is totally and eventually determined by the district courtroom. 28 USC 1291. This is named the “final judgment rule.” The contempt order that Shure appealed didn’t finish the case. Rather the case continues to be pending earlier than the district courtroom and thus just isn’t but ultimate.
Appeal Injunction Order: In addition to the final-judgment timing, a celebration has a proper to appeal an injunction related orders. 28 USC 1292(a)(1). The statute is written fairly broadly to incorporate orders “granting, continuing, modifying, refusing or dissolving injunctions, or refusing to dissolve or modify injunctions.” 28 USC 1292(a)(1). Notably, nonetheless, the statute doesn’t expressly call-out contempt orders for violation of an injunction.
Here, Shure argued that Judge Chang had modified the preliminary injunction within the contempt order by enjoining all gross sales of Shure’s MXA910-A. The appellate courtroom disagreed. Although that exact product was not significantly named within the contempt order, it’s a colorable imitation of the named MXA910 and matches throughout the injunction’s language of being “capable of being installed in a drop-ceiling” configuration.
With no proper to appeal, the appellate courtroom dismissed the case. “[W]e have no jurisdiction over this interlocutory appeal.” The courtroom defined that Shure ought to have appealed the preliminary injunction order itself. Of course, that deadline is within the rear view digital camera.
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ClearOne’s sanctions movement argues that Shure’s appeal was frivolous and seeks “just damages” as permitted by FRAP 38. Here, particularly, the courtroom has beforehand dominated (repeatedly) that an order deciphering an injunction just isn’t instantly appealable. Sanctions Motion ClearOne.