Patent lawsuit delivers fresh charges to RIM

Canadian PDA manufacturer Research in Motion could face an extra £11.73m in charges in a patent infringement dispute with company...

Canadian PDA manufacturer Research in Motion could face an extra $19.25m (£11.73m) in charges in a patent infringement dispute with company NTP.

RIM made a brief statement following a US Federal District Court ruling made on Friday.

The company said the court awarded 80% of attorney fees to NTP. At the same time, RIM said the court denied a request from NTP to triple its initial compensatory damages of $23.1m, and instead ordered the award to be increased by a factor of 0.5.

RIM said it would now record an "incremental accounting provision of approximately $13.75m to $14.25m to account for the enhancement to compensatory damages".

In addition to the damage claim, the company also said it would record approximately $5m for legal fees.

The legal battle between RIM and NTP began in November 2001. A complaint from NTP alleged that RIM's BlackBerry e-mail device infringed on eight patents held by NTP that cover the use of radio frequency wireless communications in e-mail systems.

To account for the new ruling and cover the cost of the compensation awarded to NTP, RIM said it would increase its accounting provision to between $58.25m to $58.75m for this financial year.

RIM said it estimated an increase of up to $9m in the first quarter of 2004 to incorporate enhanced compensatory damages and post-judgement interest.

RIM said on Monday that the jury verdict, ruling, damages and other awards are still subject to appeal, and that litigation between the two companies remains before the court.

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