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Texas jury finds for Cerner in patent infringement case

Allyssa D. Dudley//February 19, 2015

Texas jury finds for Cerner in patent infringement case

Allyssa D. Dudley//February 19, 2015

A Texas jury sided with North Kansas City-based health care company Cerner in a $38.2 million patent infringement case.

RLIS, a Texas-based company owned by Dr. James E. Ross, held patents on technology that synthesized patient information and doctors’ notes into an easily readable format, according to defense attorney Trent Webb of Shook, Hardy & Bacon.

The case alleged that Cerner had licensed and sold electronic medical records software that used RLIS’ technology. The amended complaint filed in federal court in Galveston, Texas, also claimed that Cerner incited other companies to infringe on RLIS’ patent.

However, this electronic medical records technology was being used publicly before Ross claimed to have invented it, Webb said, and was common in the health care profession.

RLIS alleged that Cerner was aware it was infringing on the Texas company’s patents and requested additional damages in compensation. At trial they claimed $38.2 million was lost to their client thanks to that willful infringement on Cerner’s part. Attorneys for the plaintiff, Brian D. Melton and John K. Gross, could not be reached for comment.

The jury agreed with Webb, finding that the technology RLIS had patented was being used in hospitals prior to the date Ross claimed to have invented it, and therefore found his patent invalid.


Defense verdict

Patent Infringement

Venue: U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas

Case number/date: 3:12-cv-00209/Jan. 16, 2015

Judge: Gregg Costa

Caption: RLIS Inc. v. Cerner Corp. and Allscripts Healthcare Solutions Inc

Plaintiff’s attorneys: Brian D. Melton, Susman Godfrey, Houston; John K. Gross, Leydig, Voit & Mayer, Chicago

Defendants’ attorney: Trent Webb, Shook, Hardy & Bacon, Kansas City

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