AT&T’s Lawyers Miss Deadline, Can’t Appeal $40M Patent Suit
March 23, 2015
Lawyers for AT&T missed a deadline and will not be able to appeal a $40 million verdict in a case brought by a “non-practicing entity” in the Western District of Texas. A split panel of The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit upheld the district court’s denial of the lawyers’ request for an extension, based on their misreading of the label on a notice of electronic filing, or “NEF,” from the court. The court acknowledged that the NEF “communicated an arguably incomplete description of the orders,” but noted that the complete information was sent to 18 attorneys and the orders were downloaded by legal assistants into the firm’s internal system. None of the Sidley Austin lawyers representing AT&T realized their motions for judgment as a matter of law had been denied until after missing a key deadline.
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