March 20, 2006
News Release 06-023
Inv. No. 337-TA-565
Contact: Peg O'Laughlin, 202-205-1819


The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has voted to institute an investigation of certain ink cartridges and components thereof. The products at issue in this investigation are replaceable ink cartridges used in Epson-brand inkjet printers for both black-and-white and full-color printing.

The investigation is based on a complaint filed on February 17, 2006 by Epson Portland Inc. of Hillsboro, OR; Epson America, Inc. of Long Beach, CA; and Seiko Epson Corporation of Japan. Supplements to the complaint were filed on March 10 and 14, 2006. The complaint, as supplemented, alleges violations of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 in the importation into the United States, the sale for importation, and the sale within the United States after importation of certain ink cartridges and components thereof that infringe patents owned by the complainants. The complainants request that the ITC issue a permanent exclusion order and permanent cease and desist orders.

The ITC has identified the following as respondents in this investigation:

By instituting this investigation (337-TA-565), the ITC has not yet made any decision on the merits of the case. The case will be referred to the Honorable Paul J. Luckern, an ITC administrative law judge, who will schedule and hold an evidentiary hearing. Judge Luckern will make an initial determination as to whether there is a violation of section 337; that initial determination is subject to review by the Commission.

The ITC will make a final determination in the investigation at the earliest practicable time. Within 45 days after institution of the investigation, the ITC will set a target date for completing the investigation. ITC remedial orders in section 337 cases are effective when issued and become final 60 days after issuance unless disapproved for policy reasons by the U.S. Trade Representative within that 60-day period.

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