Amazon Wins Appeals Court Ruling in Cordance Patent Fight

Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN), the world’s largest online retailer, won a federal appeals court ruling that patent claims brought by software maker Cordance Corp. related to one-click shopping and customer feedback procedures were not valid, reversing a decision by a trial judge.

The ruling today from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington reinstated a verdict by a federal jury in Delaware. The jury found that while elements of a Cordance patent had been infringed by Amazon, the claims were invalid. The trial judge later reversed the finding on infringement, leading to Amazon’s appeal.

“The district court erred” in ruling that the Cordance claims were valid, the three-judge appeals court panel wrote today. The claims were anticipated, making them invalid, the court said.

Cordance had initially sought more than $84 million in damages for infringement of three patents that are related to allowing customers to store payment information and shipping addresses in their Amazon customer accounts. The jury only found infringement for one of the three contested patents.

Michael A. Albert, an attorney with Boston-based Wolf Greenfield who represented Cordance, declined to immediately comment.

Cordance, a patent holder and software developer, sued Seattle-based Amazon in 2006, contending it was misusing technology patented by Cordance for one-click shopping and customer feedback procedures.

The case is Cordance Corp. v. Amazon.com Inc., 10-1502, 1545, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (Washington).

To contact the reporter on this story: William McQuillen in Washington at bmcquillen@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Allan Holmes at aholmes25@bloomberg.net

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