LELO Suit Halted for U.S. Patent Office Review

SAN FRANCISCO — A federal judge yesterday said that he's inclined to stay sex toy maker LELO patent suit against Standard Innovation Corp. while the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office re-examines LELO's patent for U-shaped, couples-device vibrators.

U.S. District Judge James Donato vacated future court dates while the Patent Office takes another look at U.S. Patent No. 7,749,178 and its acquisition date.

In the suit filed March 2013, LELO charged that Standard Innovation's We-Vibe 3 infringes on the patent for an "inductively chargeable massaging device."

Donato also ordered both parties to identify LELO products currently available for sale in the U.S. that directly compete with Standard Innovation’s products that allegedly infringe on the patent. The declarations must also explain why the products are properly deemed to compete or not to compete for sales.

The suit over U.S. Patent No. 7,749,178 in San Francisco federal court is just one of several other court battles that have brewed through the years between the two companies.

In December 2011, Ottawa-based Standard Innovation filed a complaint with the U.S. International Trade Commission, which has the power to block imports of products that violate U.S. patent rights, and was victorious in seeking an order that would halt shipments of the LELO products into the U.S. over infringement allegations.  

Standard Innovation later sued LELO for infringement on another design, U.S. Patent No. 7,931,605.

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