Microsoft ordered to pay $200 million in patent case

LOS ANGELES Wed May 20, 2009 5:36pm EDT

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp said on Wednesday a Texas federal jury ordered the company to pay Canadian software firm i4i Ltd $200 million in damages for infringing a patent.

The world's largest software company, which is involved in a number of legal battles over patents, said the award was unsupported, and plans to appeal.

Toronto-based i4i, a privately held maker of software for manipulating documents, claimed in a 2007 suit that Microsoft knowingly infringed one of its patents in its Word processing application and its Vista operating system.

The patent concerned software for manipulating a document's content and architecture separately. Microsoft denied infringement throughout the case.

"The evidence clearly demonstrated that we do not infringe and that the i4i patent is invalid," a Microsoft spokesman said. "We believe this award of damages is legally and factually unsupported, so we will ask the court to overturn the verdict."

i4i did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

Last month, Microsoft was ordered to pay $388 million in damages for infringing a patent held by anti-piracy software maker Uniloc Inc. It also appealing that verdict.

(Reporting by Bill Rigby; Editing by Phil Berlowitz, Richard Chang)

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