The U.S. Department of Justice on Wednesday filed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to overturn an appeal court’s ruling in favor of Apple in the Apple vs. Samsung patent case. The filing was on behalf of Samsung, as the Supremes prepare to hear the Apple v. Samsung case.
The case made its way to the Supreme Court after the U.S. Federal Court of Appeals rejected Samsung’s final lower court appeal in August 2015. In a last ditch effort, Samsung asked SCOTUS to hear the case, which it agreed to do in December 2015.
Samsung claims it was hit with “excessive penalties” for its alleged copying of the iPhone’s design. It submitted its opening brief to the Supreme Court on Tuesday. Samsung says the penalties were unfair, because while Apple was awarded damages calculated on the total profits of the product, the patent that was infringed applied to only a component of the smartphone, not the entire device.
In its amicus brief, the DoJ asserted that it was unclear if Samsung had produced enough evidence to support its argument, and asked the Supreme Court to send the case back down, to allow the trial court to determine if a new trial was warranted on that issue alone.
The legal battle stems from a 2012 court ruling that Samsung has willfully infringed on Apple Patents. Apple was initially awarded almost $1 billion in damages, however a significant part of that award was reversed in 2015, leaving a Samsung-owed amount of $548 million. Samsung has paid that amount to the iPhone maker, but could get the money back in its pockets if the ruling is overturned.