William D. Belanger, a partner with Pepper Hamilton and chair of the firm’s Intellectual Property Department, was quoted in the March 16, 2018 Law360 article, "Optical Co. Says Ex-Biz Partner's IP Suit Too Late." The article discusses a suit filed by Massachusetts-based startup SiOnyx LLC claiming its onetime partner Hamamatsu Photonics K.K. was responsible for a loss in business after it patented technology they both developed. Hamamatsu claims SiOnyx was put on notice in a 2009 email exchange and the statute of limitations had run out.
“The intent of the email was to mislead SiOnyx that [Hamamatsu] had independently developed the product, the intent was to convince SiOnyx that Hamamatsu was doing something different,” SiOnyx attorney William D. Belanger of Pepper Hamilton LLP said. “The patents were never filed prior to the statute of limitations period and they were confidential, they were filed secretly and confidentiality in Japan and could not have been found by SiOnyx.”
“The individual was identified by position at the company, they had the full discovery period to seek discovery from that company and chose not to,” Belanger, the SiOnyx attorney, countered. He argued the testimony by the SiOnyx CEO indicating the reason for the lost client should be admitted under the state of mind exception to hearsay because the company believed the potential customer broke off their relationship because of the impending kerfuffle with Hamamatsu.