Align Technology (NSDQ:ALGN) said yesterday it filed a patent infringement suit against ClearCorrect and Your Smile Direct in the UK, claiming the companies infringe patents related to its transparent dental aligners.
In the new suit, San Jose, Calif.-based Align Technology asserts that ClearCorrect infringes on 4 Align patnets by marketing, importing and selling ClearCorrect’s clear aligners. The suit also includes 3 infringement charges against Your Smile Direct for marketing, importing and selling ClearCorrect aligners under the separate brand.
“The International Trade Commission already found Align’s U.S. patents to be infringed by ClearCorrect. We believe that ClearCorrect is now infringing Align’s European patents by offering its aligners to consumers through Your Smile Direct and to practitioners through its own distribution throughout the United Kingdom. We will continue to assert and defend our intellectual property rights against infringement by Your Smile Direct, ClearCorrect, or any other company, both in the United States and internationally,” Align Tech GC Roger George said in a press release.
The company also announced it filed to lift a stay in an infringement litigation against ClearCorrect in Houston , and that it has been granted. Algin said that the matter “is now active and the parties are exchanging supplemental discovery.”
“We are proceeding aggressively now that we received permission to continue our litigation in Houston. We will present evidence of ClearCorrect’s ongoing infringement, and intend to rely in part on the findings of infringement and validity from the ITC proceedings,” George said in prepared remarks.
The suit is only the most recent step in a long string of battles between the 2 companies and associated subsidiaries. Last September, the U.S. International Trade Commission declined to fight for its authority to regulate data, leaving the battle between Align and ClearCorrect to play out in patent infringement.
Both Align and the ITC had until August 26 to appeal a ruling made in November 2015 which found that the ITC does not have jurisdiction over the transmission of digital data over the internet.
In March, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit denied a plea for an en banc rehearing of the case against ClearCorrect
While ClearCorrect celebrated the ruling as a victory supporting the compliance of its clear aligner product with legal standards, Align Technologies said the decision was solely about the International Trade Commission’s jurisdiction on digitally transmitted data.