Supreme Court asks government to review Epic's trade secrets case against Tata

Jackie Drees -

The Supreme Court tapped the U.S. government to weigh in on a trade secrets case involving Verona, Wis.-based EHR company Epic and Tata Consultancy Services, according to recent court documents. 

Seven details: 

1. The Supreme Court on Oct. 12 invited the Acting Solicitor General to share the government's views on a case involving Epic and Indian consultancy group Tata. In August 2020, a U.S. appeals court ruled that the $280 million in punitive damages Tata was previously ordered to pay Epic be reassessed. 

2. Epic filed a lawsuit against Tata in October 2014 alleging that Tata employees stole trade secrets, confidential information, documents and data from Epic. In April 2016, a Wisconsin jury ruled in Epic's favor on seven claims, including misappropriation of trade secrets. The EHR company initially was awarded a $940 million verdict — $240 million in compensatory damages and $700 million in punitive damages, Crowell Trade Secrets Trends reported Oct. 29. 

3. A Wisconsin judge in 2017 reduced Epic's punitive damages award to $420 million to comply with state laws, which caps the amount of punitive damages permitted in such cases, according to The Economic Times

4. Epic filed a petition asking the Supreme Court to review its case in April 2021 because of its issue with the amount it was to be paid in compensatory damages, which the appeals court in August 2020 cut down to $140 million. 

5. Epic is appealing the $140 million in compensatory damages decision to the Supreme Court, claiming the appeals court had "erroneously set a cap at a one-to-one ratio of punitive to compensatory damages," according to Crowell Trade Secrets Trends. Epic also claimed the appeals court's ruling is inconsistent and this type of award has been "permitted for hundreds of years," according to the Supreme Court case documents. 

6. The Supreme Court has not given the government a deadline for sharing its views on the appeal, according to Crowell Trade Secrets Trends

7. Epic denied Becker's comment request, citing the company's policy against commenting on pending litigation. Tata did not respond to Becker's comment request.

 

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