December 21, 2007
News Release 07-130
Inv. No. 337-TA-625
Contact: Peg O'Laughlin, 202-205-1819


The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has voted to institute an investigation of certain self-cleaning litter boxes and components thereof.

The investigation is based on a complaint filed by Applica Incorporated and Applica Consumer Products, Inc., of Miramar, FL, and Waters Research Company of West Dundee, IL, on November 26, 2007. The complaint alleges violations of section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930 in the importation into the United States and sale of certain self-cleaning litter boxes and components thereof that infringe a patent owned by the complainants. The complainants request that the ITC issue an exclusion order and a cease and desist order.

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

By instituting this investigation (337-TA-625), the ITC has not yet made any decision on the merits of the case. The case will be referred to the Honorable Theodore R. Essex, an ITC administrative law judge, who will schedule and hold an evidentiary hearing. Judge Essex 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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