Posted: September 13th, 2018
Nikon Corporation v. ASML Holding N.V., ASML Netherlands B.V. and ASML Systems B.V. and Carl Zeiss SMT GmbH, District Court of The Hague, 5 September 2018, Case No. ECLI:NL:RBDHA:2018:10700
Zeiss is not allowed intervene on the side of ASML in the action between ASML and Nikon. Zeiss timely submitted its request to intervene according to a literal reading of the rules of the accelerated patent regime proceedings (a regime commonly used in the Netherlands for patent cases, whereby all trial dates -for serving the writ, for submitting briefs, for oral pleadings, etc. are fixed by the court in a decision, prior to the serving of the writ).
However, Zeiss has been closely involved in the dispute (attorneys and representatives of Zeiss were present during earlier oral hearings in other accelerated patent regime proceedings between ASML and Nikon) and therefore Zeiss had to know about the current proceedings (number 10 in the series) as of the beginning.
Submitting the request at the final day of the term would lead to an undue delay in the accelerated proceedings, as Zeiss would have to be given the possibility to answer in the main claim. Zeiss could have prevented this delay by submitting the request to join in a timely manner and in light of the involvement of Zeiss as of the beginning, Zeiss was in the position to do so. Therefore, the interest of Nikon in a speedy completion of the proceedings prevails. The request is denied.
A copy of the decision (in Dutch) can be read here.