Court says Microsoft must pay $290 million

Jun 9, 2011

The Supreme Court says Microsoft Corp. must pay a $290 million patent infringement judgment awarded to a small Toronto software company in a patent lawsuit.

The high court on Thursday refused to throw out the judgment against the world's largest software maker.

Toronto-based i4i sued Microsoft in 2007, saying it owned the technology behind a tool used in Microsoft Word. The technology in question gave Word 2003 and Word 2007 users an improved way to edit XML, which is computer code that tells the program how to interpret and display a document's contents.

The lower courts say Microsoft willfully infringed on the patent, and ordered the software maker to pay i4i $290 million and stop selling versions of Word containing the infringing technology. The high court upheld that judgment.

Microsoft spokesman Kevin Kutz released this statement, according to The Seattle Time's Microsoft Pri0 blog:

"While the outcome is not what we had hoped for, we will continue to advocate for changes to the law that will prevent abuse of the patent system and protect inventors who hold patents representing true innovation."