The US Supreme Court recently heard arguments in a legal malpractice case arising out of a patent infringement lawsuit filed on behalf of a JohnstonTobey client.
The high court heard arguments in Gunn v. Minton over whether federal or state courts have jurisdiction in legal malpractice cases arising out of patent infringement cases. Federal courts hear most cases in the patent area.
JohnstonTobey filed the legal malpractice case on behalf of Vernon Minton, a software developer who claimed that his lawyers mishandled a patent infringement case he filed against NASDAQ. The defense in this case wanted the decision made in state court, while the Minton side was defending a Texas Supreme Court decision.
JohnstonTobey partner Randy Johnston says it’s odd defending a Texas decision at the US Supreme Court. ”I’m struck with the irony that it’s my job to protect the integrity of the decision of the Texas Supreme Court,” says the legal malpractice attorney, “because they are generally not known as a plaintiff’s friendly court. But we’re going to do it.”
Johnston says having a case heard by the US Supreme Court is an honor that comes with a price tag when you’re on a contingent fee, which he is in this case, but it’s an honor that shows the importance of malpractice cases his firm handles.