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Microsoft Unsuccessful At Immersion Lawyer Block

In its ongoing legal battle with 'rumble' patent holder Immersion, Microsoft has lost a bid to block law firm Irell & Manella, who negotiated a March 2007 settlement with Sony, from representing Immersion as Microsoft seeks damages.
Microsoft has lost some ground in its ongoing legal battle against Immersion, holder of the patent on video game controller 'rumble' technology, according to a new report. When Immersion sued both Microsoft and Sony for patent infringement in 2002, part of Microsoft's $26 million settlement agreement with the company reportedly stipulated that it would be entitled to a payment in the event that Immersion reached a settlement with Sony as well. Sony did reach a settlement with Immersion in March 2007, and apparently Microsoft has not received a payment because Immersion never called its agreement with Sony a "settlement." According to a Seattle Post-Intelligencer reporter, Microsoft and Immersion are back in court over this latest dispute, with Microsoft aiming to block law firm Irell and Manella from representing Immersion in the case. Judge Ricardo Martinez refused the motion, however, to disqualify all of the firm's attorneys, since not all of them were individually involved in the case with Sony, and determined that Irell & Manella could represent Immersion so long as the attorneys arguing the case were separate from those who might be required to act as witnesses.

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