Mike Boyle, doing business as Surface Dynamix, and Christopher Boyle, his son, have asked the U.S. District Court of Oregon, Eugene division, to disqualify GlasWeld’s counsel Javier Sobrado and his firm, Feldman Gale LLP, from serving as GlasWeld’s counsel. The Boyles claim that, “[the attorney] has knowingly and purposefully violated a fundamental precept of legal practice: the rule that an attorney for a litigant shall not also serve as a witness in the same litigation.” In response, GlasWeld gave notice that it opposes the Boyles’ motion in the alleged patent infringement case.
“[I]t appears that Sabrado has presented ‘facts’ in a misleading and arguably inaccurate manner,” the Boyles’ claim in their motion. “Therefore, by this motion, defendants Mike Boyle and Christopher Boyle seek an order disqualifying attorney Sabrado as well as law firm Feldman Gale LLP as representation for the plaintiff GlasWeld.
“In plaintiff’s zeal to establish a bogus claim of patent infringement, Sabrado and his firm have improperly injected themselves into the discovery and evidentiary proceedings in this case by making purportedly factual claims and allegations about defendants’ products via declaration,” the Boyles allege. “It is black-letter law that an attorney who is serving both as advocate and witness in the same case must withdraw or be disqualified. This rule rightly guards against confusion for the trier of fact, unfairness to the opposing party, and the possibility of the attorney’s advocacy conflicting with the need for truthful testimony.”
The Boyles have asked for an oral argument.
GlasWeld, meanwhile, gave notice to the court that it intends to submit briefs in opposition to the Boyles’ motions.
“Although defendants filed their motions as ‘emergency’ motions, defendants set forth no facts or circumstances to support any ‘emergency’ relating to these motions and GlasWeld is not aware of any such facts or circumstances,” the company’s attorneys claim. “Accordingly, unless the court orders an expedited briefing schedule, GlasWeld will respond to these motions in accordance with the local rules.”
The court has not issued any new decisions at press time.
To view the Boyles’ motions, click here.
To view GlasWeld’s response, click here.