On July 24, 2013, Chief ALJ Charles E. Bullock issued Order No. 46 in Certain Wireless Devices with 3G and/or 4G Capabilities and Components Thereof (Inv. No. 337-TA-868). In the Order, ALJ Bullock granted Complainants InterDigital Communications, Inc., InterDigital Technology Corp., IPR Licensing, Inc., and InterDigital Holdings, Inc. (collectively, “InterDigital”) and Respondents Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., Samsung Electronics America, Inc., Samsung Telecommunications America, LLC, Huawei Technologies, Co., Ltd., Huawei Device USA, Inc., Futurewei Technologies, Inc., Nokia Inc., Nokia Corp., ZTE Corp., and ZTE (USA) Inc.’s (collectively, “Respondents”) joint motion to amend the protective order in the investigation.
According to the Order, InterDigital and Respondents sought to amend the protective order to add specific provisions permitting the use of discovery from the investigation in four co-pending actions in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware. The amendments also sought to permit use of discovery from the co-pending district court actions in the investigation. The Commission Investigative Staff did not oppose the motion.
After considering the arguments, ALJ Bullock determined to grant the joint motion and amend the protective order. The ALJ found that permitting the requested modifications would minimize the duplication of discovery in the investigation and the co-pending district court actions. However, he noted that any information and material produced by the parties in the district court actions is subject to the discovery limitations imposed by the ground rules, protective orders, and timelines set forth in the procedural schedule in the investigation. As an example, the ALJ noted that “information and material produced by the parties in the Delaware Actions after the close of fact discovery in this Investigation may not be used in this Investigation.”