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Legal dispute dates back to 2010

Jury orders ZOLL to pay Philips $7.1 million in damages for patent infringement

par Lauren Dubinsky , Senior Reporter
A federal jury in Boston issued a verdict Thursday on a long-standing patent infringement case between Philips Electronics North America Corporation and ZOLL Medical Corporation.

ZOLL was ordered to pay Philips $8.9 million in damages for infringing a patent for wake-up self-tests in an AED, as well as $1.5 million for two patents that covered monitoring patient impedance while delivering a biphasic waveform. Philips didn’t get close to the $217 million it was seeking in damages.

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The jury also ordered Philips to pay $3.3 million in damages for infringing two ZOLL patents that concerned high-impedance defibrillation electrodes that lessen burns and monitoring for life-threatening heart rhythms.

“This $7.1 [million] is the net difference owed to Philips by [ZOLL], and is made up of a $10.4 [million] award to Philips, less a $3.3 [million] award to [ZOLL],” a Philips spokesperson wrote to HCB News in an email. “We do not have any further comments.”

Philips instigated the litigation on June 18, 2010 when it sued ZOLL, alleging that several of their patents were infringed by ZOLL’s defibrillator products. Those products did not include ZOLL’s flagship LifeVest wearable defibrillator.

ZOLL fired back on July 12, 2010, accusing Philips of also infringing several of its defibrillator patents. The two separate cases were combined and bifurcated into an initial liability portion and then a later damages portion.

In December 2013, the liability portion was tried to a jury and the court entered an interlocutory judgment that ZOLL and Philips both infringed patent rights. The U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts then initiated a jury trial for the damages portion in July.

ZOLL and its parent company, Asahi Kasei, believe that the jury was fair in awarding reasonable damages. The Philips patents involved in this litigation are now expired, so ZOLL will not have to pay royalties for future sales.

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