The damages Samsung was set to pay Apple have been reduced by 40 percent after a California judge ruled that the award was calculated on “impermissible legal theory.”
Apple was awarded approximately $1.05 billion in damages from Samsung after a jury ruled in August that Samsung had infringed upon its patents. This new ruling means that Samsung will now pay Apple approximately $450 million.
“The court has identified an impermissible legal theory on which the jury based its award and cannot reasonably calculate the amount of excess while effectuating the intent of the jury,” Judge Lucy Koh, who presided over the Apple v. Samsung case, said in her ruling. “Though the Court gave a curative instruction, explicitly telling the jury that it was not allowed to apply that theory, the amount of the award made plain that the jury had applied the impermissible theory anyway.”
Patent blogger Florian Mueller believes that this ruling means a second trial will be necessary:
“The $450 million amount corresponds to 14 Samsung products, with respect to which a new damages trial must be held because the court cannot make the adjustments it deems necessary for legal reasons: the jury set only one damages figure per product, but half a dozen different intellectual property rights were found infringed, resulting in a lack of clarity as to what portion of a per-product damages figure is attributable to a given intellectual property right.”
In her ruling Judge Koh noted that Samsung’s Galaxy Prevail seemed to be a victim of the jury’s “impermissible legal theory.” The jury ruled that the handset only violated Apple’s utility patents — a minor slight in the world of Intellectual Property trials — Apple was awarded $57,867,383 in damages, or nearly half of Samsung’s profits from sales of the handset.