Bender v Motorola Inc., No. 09-1245 (N.D. Cal., February 26, 2010, order)
Rule 8 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure requires that a complaint contain a “short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” If a complaint fails to satisfy Rule 8, it “must be dismissed” under Rule 12(b)(6) for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). To survive a motion to dismiss, the plaintiff must allege “enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.”
Bender filed an Amended Complaint accusing Motorola of infringing a patent directed to a “Buffered Transconductance Amplifier.” The Complaint did not specify any particular accused devices, and instead, simply alleged that broad categories products were infringing, where the allegedly infringing devices were identified as
products [including], without limitation, cell phones, computers, network drivers, high definition television sets, ultrasound machines, MRI machines, lab equipment, arbitrary waveform generators, audio amplifiers, video amplifiers, hard disc drives, ADC/DAC converters, DVD-RW players, DSL modems, CCD cameras, satellite communication technology, and other products where high performance, high speed analog circuits are used, and/or components thereof.
Motorola filed a motion to dismiss pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) on the ground that the Complaint failed to identify any particular accused devices. The district court granted the motion.
Here, the Amended Complaint is too conclusory to provide “fair notice” of the basis of Plaintiff’s claim that Defendant infringed the ‘188 Patent. Nowhere in the Amended Complaint does Plaintiff identify, with the requisite level of factual detail, the particular product or line of products, that allegedly infringe the ‘188 Patent. Instead, Plaintiff merely claims that the infringing “products include, without limitation, cell phones, computers . . . and other products where high performance, high speed analog circuits are used, and/or components thereof.” [P]laintiff has done nothing more than recite a laundry list of electronic devices. These cursory allegations are insufficient to give the Defendant fair notice of the claims being alleged against it.
Plaintiff argues that his Amended Complaint provides all the information required in Form 18. This contention lacks merit. The form contemplates that the pleader identify the accused device with some semblance of specificity to alert the alleged infringer which device is at issue. It does not contemplate that the accused device or devices be described in terms of a multiplicity of generically-described product lines such as “satellite communications technology” and “audio amplifiers,” as Plaintiff has done here.
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Source: Docket Navigator