Bloomberg News

Bard Wins Round as High Court Rejects Gore Patent Appeal

January 14, 2013

C.R. Bard Inc. (BCR:US), a maker of catheters, moved closer to collecting hundreds of millions of dollars as the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal by W.L. Gore & Associates Inc. in a patent lawsuit over vascular grafts.

The justices today left intact a $185 million jury verdict against Gore, the company behind the waterproof Gore-Tex fabrics. The court gave no explanation, rejecting Gore’s appeal as part of a list of orders released today in Washington.

The potential award has risen with interest, royalties and fees. Gore owed more than $900 million as of September, Bard said in a regulatory filing last year. A trial judge in Arizona is revisiting part of the award -- $185 million assessed for acting intentionally, along with related legal fees.

Bard rose (BCR:US) as much as 1.5 percent after the Supreme Court issued the order, before falling later in the day. For the day, shares dropped 45 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $102.68 at 4:15 p.m. in New York.

The case began in 2003 and involves a dispute dating back to 1974. At issue is a tube that helps retain the shape of non- coronary blood vessels using a substance similar to DuPont Co.’s Teflon, according to the patent.

At the Supreme Court, Gore argued unsuccessfully that one of its employees was a co-inventor of the grafts. Closely held Gore, a Newark, Delaware-based maker of surgical products and fibers, says it uses the substance for its Gore-Tex fabrics.

The two sides are still battling over the award at the trial court in Arizona. Gore is seeking a new trial while Bard is asking a judge to let the company collect more than $740 million. Bard is based in Murray Hill, New Jersey.

The Supreme Court case is W.L. Gore v. C.R. Bard, 12-458. The district court case is Bard Peripheral Vascular v. W.L. Gore & Associates, 03cv597, U.S. District Court, District of Arizona (Phoenix).

To contact the reporters on this story: Greg Stohr in Washington at gstohr@bloomberg.net; Susan Decker in Washington at sdecker1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steven Komarow at skomarow1@bloomberg.net


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Companies Mentioned

  • BCR
    (CR Bard Inc)
    • $145.96 USD
    • 2.14
    • 1.47%
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