By Eric Schweibenz
On May 1, 2009, ALJ Robert K. Rogers, Jr. issued Order No. 29 in Certain Semiconductor Integrated Circuits and Products Containing Same (337-TA-665).  In the Order, ALJ Rogers denied respondents LSI Corporation, Seagate Technology, Seagate Technology (US) Holdings Inc., Seagate Technology LLC, Seagate Memory Products (US) Corporation, Seagate Technologies International (Singapore), and Seagate (US) LLC’s (collectively “Respondents”) motion to strike complainant Qimonda AG’s (“Qimonda”) eight motions to compel. 

According to the Order, Respondents argued that Qimonda did not satisfy the meet and confer requirements of Ground Rule 3.2, including the provision requiring that the moving party attempt to contact and resolve the disputed matter with the other parties at least two business days prior to filing the motion.  According to Respondents, Qimonda sent an email at 10:19 p.m. on the night of April 21, 2009 stating that it intended to file motions to compel on various topics.  Qimonda subsequently filed the subject motions to compel on April 23.  Thus, Respondents argued Qimonda (1) failed to provide Respondents with the two day notice required by Ground Rule 3.2; (2) unreasonably delayed bringing the motions to compel since the issues that form the bases for the motions were disputed for weeks; and (3) sought to impede Respondents’ trial preparation.  In response, Qimonda argued that it satisfied Ground Rule 3.2 for each of the eight motions to compel and  Respondents violated Ground Rule 3.2 in filing the instant motion to strike by failing to notify Qimonda of Respondents’ intent to file such motion. The Commission Investigative Staff filed a response in support of Respondents’ motion to strike.

ALJ Rogers determined that “Respondents’ motion to strike is not the procedurally appropriate method for addressing Qimonda’s alleged failure to meet Ground Rule 3.2 in its eight motions.”  ALJ Rogers further determined that “[i]f Respondents believe that the eight motions to compel should be denied due to Qimonda’s failure to comply with Ground Rule 3.2, then they should address the issue in their responses to Qimonda’s motions along with any other procedural or substantive issues they wish to raise.”