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DealerTrack, RouteOne Settle Eight-Year-Old Patent Suit

October 9, 2012

SANTA ANA, Calif. — The patent infringement suit DealerTrack filed against RouteOne in January 2004 has ended, with the two companies announcing that a settlement has been reached. A stipulation of dismissal was filed on Oct. with the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

“We’re pleased to have preserved the strength of our patents, while achieving a successful outcome to the litigation,” said Mark O’Neil, chairman and CEO of DealerTrack, in a joint press release. “This is a big win for our clients, and we’re excited about continuing to create innovative and high value solutions for the automotive dealers and lenders throughout North America.”

RouteOne’s CEO Mike Jurecki added: “RouteOne couldn’t be more pleased with the settlement and the outcome of the litigation. We believe it is a win-win for the parties, and equally as important a win for our customers, as we can now focus all of our attention on developing and providing solutions that continue to deliver maximum benefit to them.”

Terms of the settlement are not being made public, according to a DealerTrack representative.

DealerTrack initially filed its lawsuit against RouteOne on Jan. 24, 2004, charging the company with willfully infringing on three of its patents after RouteOne launched its Web-based credit application management system in 2003. Patents listed in the suit covered RouteOne’s routing system, and the program used to support process related to automated credit application analysis and decisioning.

DealerTrack later filed a similar suit against Finance Express, which offers a lender portal to independent dealers, and its president, David Huber. He responded shortly thereafter by filing counterclaims against DealerTrack.

After the two defendants partnered together, DealerTrack filed a joint claim against both of the software companies in 2006, each of which countered with opposing claims.

In July 2009, DealerTrack participated in an appeal from multiple parties to a separate U.S. District Court ruling that would invalidate the company’s patent claims against Finance Express. In January of this year, however, an order from the court remanded its earlier decision that DealerTrack’s claims against the finance company were ‘non-infringement.’

Under the terms of the Oct. 5 settlement, DealerTrack and RouteOne filed a stipulation of dismissal with Judge Andrew Guilford of the United States District Court for the Central District of California by which all claims raised by the parties in all cases brought by Patents Nos. 5,878,403, 6,587,841 and 7,181,427 are to be dismissed. 

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