Seyi Case Cited in Recent Patent Infringement Dispute
In urging the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee to dismiss a patent infringement case, the defendant in Edgeaq, LLC v. WTS Paradigm, LLC, 2015 WL 9703981 (M.D. Tenn. 2015), also argued in the alternative, for a transfer of the dispute to the district court in Wisconsin. In doing so, the defendant relied upon the firm's decision in Seyi-America, Inc. v. Stamtec, Inc., 2013 WL 6096794 (M.D. Tenn. Nov. 20, 2013).
Specifically regarding our case, the defendants stated, as follows:
The cost of obtaining witnesses favors transfer. The identification of witnesses is “often considered to be the most importantfactor when determining which forum is the most convenient.” Seyi-Am., Inc. v. Stamtec, Inc., No. 3-13-0461, 2013 WL6096794, at *6 (M.D. Tenn. Nov. 20, 2013) (internal quotations and citations omitted). The vast majority of potentialemployee witnesses for this case work in the Western District of Wisconsin. Plaintiff alleges that WTS infringes the patentsin-suit via its CenterPoint System, alone or in combination with its “One Catalog. Everywhere.” System. Such allegationsnecessitate evidence relating to the development, functionality, marketing, distribution, and sales of WTS’s CenterPoint System and/or “One Catalog. Everywhere.” System. WTS has initially identified approximately 100 employees that may have information about WTS’s CenterPoint System. (Fields Decl., ¶ 39.) The majority of these employees work in WTS’s Middleton, Wisconsin office. (Id.) . . .
. . . The accessibility of evidence favors transfer. “In patent infringement cases, the bulk of the relevant evidence usually comesfrom the accused infringer. Consequently, the place where the defendant’s documents are kept weighs in favor of transfer to that location.” In re Genentech, Inc., 566 F.3d 1338, 1345 (Fed. Cir. 2009) (internal quotations and citations omitted). Although this factor is now sometimes discounted “ ‘[i]n the modern era of photocopying, scanning, fax machines, email, overnight delivery services, etc.,’ ” it can still weigh in the balance. Seyi-Am., Inc. v. Stamtec, Inc., No. 3-13-0461, 2013 WL 6096794, at *6 (M.D. Tenn. Nov. 20, 2013). All of the documentation in WTS’s possession related to the development, functionality, marketing, distribution, and sales of Defendant’s CenterPoint System is located in WTS’s Middleton, Wisconsin office and/or on servers located in or accessed from Wisconsin. (Fields Decl., ¶ 13.) Moreover, upon information and belief, Plaintiff has evidence located in Wisconsin because Plaintiff is registered to conduct business in Wisconsin (Boor Decl., ¶ 7), and, upon information and belief, Plaintiff has a facility located in Waukesha, Wisconsin (id., ¶ 8). The ability to search, gather and produce documents related to this litigation would be greatly aided by having the litigation tried locally. Accordingly, the availability of evidence favors transfer . . .
. . . Plaintiff’s choice of forum is not dispositive. Indeed, the Supreme Court has made clear that when balancing the factors relevant to a motion to transfer, no one factor is dispositive, including the plaintiff’s choice of forum. Stewart, 487 U.S. at 31. Accordingly, this Court has stated that a plaintiff’s choice of forum “ ‘is not sacrosanct . . . and will not defeat a well-founded motion for change of venue . . . .’ ” See Seyi-Am., Inc. v. Stamtec, Inc., No. 3-13-0461, 2013 WL 6096794, at *6 (M.D. Tenn. Nov. 20, 2013). Accordingly, while Plaintiff’s choice to litigate in the Middle District of Tennessee may disfavor transfer, it is not dispositive and does not outweigh all of the foregoing factors that weigh in favor of transfer.
We will continue to monitor Edgeaq to detemine whether the district court also relies upon Seyi as support for its decision.