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Court Doubles Damages Award Against Briggs and Stratton for Willful Infringement

| Brian Horne

A Nebraska court upheld a jury’s reasonable royalty award of more than $14 million for infringement of Exmark’s patent relating to lawnmower baffles.  An appellate court had vacated a previous jury award and remanded the case for a new damages trial.  In addition to upholding the jury’s award, the court doubled that award due to Briggs and Stratton’s willful infringement.  The court also added nearly $6 million in prejudgment interest.  The court had previously calculated interest using the U.S. Treasury rate.  The court reconsidered that ruling and conceded that such a low rate would unfairly punish Exmark.  Thus, the court recalculated interest using the prime rate for the time after Exmark filed the lawsuit.

This case is: Exmark Manufacturing Co., Inc. v. Briggs & Stratton Corp., 8:10CV187 (D. Neb.)