Appellate Court Affirms Kubota's Win in Patent Case
On July 17, 2003, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) affirmed a jury verdict and judgment of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois in favor of Kubota in a patent case brought by John Deere.
On March 31, 1999, Deere filed a lawsuit against Kubota Corporation and Kubota Tractor Corporation before the Federal District Court in Illinois claiming that the implement suspension mechanisms of Kubota's TG1860-series lawn and garden tractors and of other models (B-, BX-, and New G-series) infringe a patent owned by Deere. On April 5, 2002, following a two-week trial, the jury rejected Deere's arguments and issued a verdict that Kubota's implement suspension mechanisms did not infringe Deere's patent. The District Court later affirmed the jury's verdict and issued a final judgment in favor of Kubota.
Dissatisfied with the District Court's ruling, Deere filed an appeal with the CAFC on September 9, 2002. After filing written briefs with the CAFC, both parties presented oral arguments to the CAFC in Washington, D.C. on July 8, 2003. The CAFC, in a swift and summary decision, affirmed the jury verdict and the District Court's judgment, rejecting Deere's appeal and confirming the validity of Kubota's position.