The opinion of the court was delivered by: Lucy H. Koh United States District Court For the Northern District of California
ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF'S EX PARTE APPLICATION TO SHORTEN TIME FOR HEARING ON PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO SUBSTITUTE PLAINTIFF (re: dkt. #145)
United States District Court For the Northern District of California
On October 25, 2011, Plaintiff and Counterclaim-Defendant Aerielle Technologies, Inc. ("Aerielle" or "Plaintiff") simultaneously filed a Motion to Substitute Party and an Ex Parte 19 Application to Shorten Time for Hearing on that Motion. See ECF Nos. 145, 146. In its Ex Parte 20 Application, Plaintiff asks this Court to deem Aerielle's Motion to Substitute Party filed as of 21 October 25, 2011 and to set it for hearing on November 22, 2011, the same day as a further case 22 management conference scheduled in this case, rather than on February 2, 2012, the next available 23 hearing date as of the time Aerielle filed its Ex Parte Application.
Defendants and Counterclaim-Plaintiffs Belkin International, Inc., Best Buy Co., Inc., Best Buy.com, LLC, Best Buy Stores, L.P., and RadioShack Corporation (collectively "Defendants") 26 filed a response on October 31, 2011, opposing Plaintiff's Ex Parte Application. Defendants 27 oppose principally on grounds that Plaintiff's failure to timely produce documents relevant to the 28 assignments of rights in the two patents-in-suit renders the proposed expedited briefing schedule on Plaintiff's Motion to Substitute Party "unrealistic and prejudicial to Defendants." ECF No. 150.
On September 21, 2011, after Plaintiff informed the Court that it had assigned its intellectual 3 property rights in the two patents-in-suit to a creditor named "Great American Life" or "Great 4 American Insurance," the Court ordered Plaintiff to produce all documents relevant to the 5 assignment by September 28, 2011. See ECF No. 138. Defendants assert that Plaintiff produced 6 over 1,200 pages of ownership-related documents on October 21, 2011, nearly a month after the Court-ordered deadline, and just shortly before filing its Ex Parte Application and Motion to Substitute Party. ECF No. 150 at 4. Furthermore, Defendants provide evidence that Plaintiff's 9 production of relevant documents remained incomplete even at the time of filing its Motion. Id.
ad Plaintiff fully complied with the Court's September 21, 2011 Order, it could have 12 moved to substitute plaintiff much sooner. Instead, it waited until October 25, 2011 to file its 13 motion, and now asks the Court for an expedited hearing. The Court finds that Plaintiff has 14 exhibited a pattern of not being forthcoming regarding the assignment of rights, a matter that is 15 indispensable to determining Plaintiff's standing and the Court's subject matter jurisdiction over 16 this action. Accordingly, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Ex Parte Application. Pursuant to this Order, Plaintiff shall re-file its Motion to Substitute Party and notice it for the next available 18 hearing date after consulting Ms. Martha Parker-Brown, the Courtroom Deputy.
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