Monday, November 12, 2012

Apple U.K. forced to pay all of Samsung’s legal fees after court order snarkiness

If you think that Apple U.K. is going to get away with a wrist slap after multiple attempts at circumventing posting the apology to Samsung it was required to, you'd be wrong, based on a Saturday report of some extra penalties.

Apple first tried to post an apology that had "an addendum." The extra paragraph that Apple originally posted noted that although the U.K. court found that Samsung did not infringe on the iPad, other courts have ruled differently. Judge Robin Jacob and his fellow judges were not pleased with that snarky response.

Then, Apple U.K. implemented code on its website which effectively "hid" the apology. The code forced users, no matter their resolution or browser, to scroll down to see the text. If they did not do so, they would never see the apology.

On Saturday, the Court of Appeal of England and Wales ordered Apple to pay the legal fees of competitor Samsung on an "indemnity basis" after the attempts to circumvent the full court order, as listed above (in particular, the "false and misleading" notice in the first instance).

The judgment will require Apple to pay for all expenses associated with Samsung's legal defense, with any disputes over the exact amount likely to be resolved in the latter firm's favor.

The ruling said:
As to the costs (lawyers’ fees) to be awarded against Apple, we concluded that they should be on an indemnity basis. Such a basis (which is higher than the normal, “standard” basis) can be awarded as a mark of the court’s disapproval of a party’s conduct, particularly in relation to its respect for an order of the court. Apple’s conduct warranted such an order.
While these fees will be a drop in the bucket of Apple’s income and revenue stream, it serves as an embarrassment to the company, which is what the court wanted.

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