Marc David Peters is a partner in the Intellectual Property Group and the Litigation Department. He represents clients in litigation and counseling involving semiconductor, electronics, and computer-related technologies. His cases involve technologies such as virtual machine software, haptic feedback devices, semiconductor fabrication equipment, gallium-nitride-based laser diodes and LEDs, hyperthreaded processors, optoelectronic transceivers, surgical lasers, synchronization software, modems and video-on-demand servers.
Dr. Peters currently represents Immersion Corporation in its patent litigation against HTC, having obtained a favorable settlement with Motorola Mobility earlier in the case. On behalf of Oracle America, he was second chair on the patent phase of the battle against Google over the Android operating system—a case that the court dubbed the “World Series of IP Cases.”
He recently defended Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment (China), a Shanghai-based manufacturer of advanced semiconductor fabrication equipment, against accusations by Applied Materials of trade secret misappropriation. He obtained a precedential court opinion regarding the rights of California inventors to their inventions, which ruled that Applied Materials’ standard employment agreements were illegal under California law because they purported to require former employees to assign inventions they made after leaving the company. The case settled on confidential terms shortly before trial.
Dr. Peters helped obtain summary judgment on behalf of California’s foster parents, in a pro bono case brought with the Children’s Advocacy Institute. California was adjudged to have violated federal law by failing to calculate and pay for the actual costs of raising foster children. As a direct result of the state’s failure to reimburse foster parents as required by federal law, California’s foster care system is less effective and more expensive than it should be. For their work, the Morrison & Foerster team received the 2010 President's Pro Bono Service Award from the California State Bar, and the case was selected as one of five Outstanding Pro Bono Projects of 2010 by The Daily Journal. The team successfully defended the judgment in an appeal to the Ninth Circuit.
Dr. Peters is an author of the Patent Case Management Judicial Guide, published by the Federal Judicial Center and LexisNexis. A third edition is forthcoming. The guide is a comprehensive overview of best practices and procedures in patent cases, and is provided to all federal district judges.
Dr. Peters is admitted to practice in California, and is registered to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office. He received his J.D. with distinction from Stanford University in 2000, and his Ph.D. in physics from the University of California, Berkeley in 1997. He was a member of the scientific team that discovered the top quark, and is a co-author of more than a hundred papers in refereed journals. While earning his doctorate, he received the UC Berkeley Faculty Associate Award for excellence in teaching, and authored the “Physics 111: Laboratory Electronics” course manual. Dr. Peters received his A.B. in physics, magna cum laude, from Harvard University in 1990.
Immersion Corp. v. Sony
(JAMS Arbitration). Won arbitration award finding that products infringe Japanese patents, applying Japanese patent law. The award was confirmed by the Northern District of California (denying Sony’s motion to vacate) and is currently on appeal.
Immersion v. HTC
(District of Delaware). Representing Immersion in suit for patent infringement involving HTC’s Android smartphones. Obtained favorable settlement with respect to most issues; currently handling appeal of trial court’s interpretation of statutory requirements for continuation applications.
SoftVault Systems v. Sensus USA
(Northern District of California). Defended Sensus USA in suit for patent infringement involving smart meters for utilities. Case settled shortly after filing Alice motion for judgment on the pleadings for unpatentability under 35 U.S.C. § 101
Oracle America v. Google
(Northern District of California). Represented Oracle America in suit for copyright and patent infringement based on Google’s inclusion of Java platform technology in the Android software platform and operating system.
Applied Materials v. Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment
(Northern District of California). Defended Shanghai-based Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment in a California trade secret action involving semiconductor manufacturing equipment. The case settled shortly before trial on confidential terms.