On June 27, 2018, Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co filed a joint notice of settlement with the United States District Court Northern District of California, ending a seven-year legal battle relating to design and utility patents covering aspects of Apple iPhone’s screen shape and icon layout.

Apple initially filed suit in 2011 and won at trial. The trial judge had ruled that Samsung must pay Apple $1 billion in damages, but this amount was eventually reduced to $548 million.  Samsung appealed this decision, which eventually made its way to the US Supreme Court.  The Supreme Court sent the case back to the lower court for reconsideration. The lower court had to determine to what extent the copied features from Apple’s patents contributed to Samsung’s profits and proportionally how much of Samsung’s smartphone profits Samsung should pay Apple as damages. The lower court awarded Apple $539 million.

Samsung had pledged to appeal the lower court’s decision. The June 27, 2018 Joint Notice of Settlement represents an end to this longstanding legal saga.

Summary By: Jae Morris

E-TIPS® ISSUE

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