Marilyn L. Huff

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Marilyn L. Huff (born March 6, 1951) is a Senior United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of California.


Huff was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She received a B.A. from Calvin College in 1972 and a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School in 1976. She was in private practice of law in San Diego, California from 1976 to 1991.

Huff is a federal judge on the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. Huff was nominated by President George H.W. Bush on March 12, 1991 to a seat vacated by William B. Enright. She was confirmed by the United States Senate on May 9, 1991 and received her commission on May 14, 1991. She served as chief judge from 1998 to 2005. She took senior status on September 30, 2016.

As a judge, she has gained a reputation in the field of intellectual property, speaking around the country on the topic.[1]

Notable cases[edit]

Lucent Technologies v. Microsoft[edit]

This case involved one of the largest awards for a computer code patent infringement in history. The original award was for $368 million.[2] Microsoft made a motion for The final amount awarded with interest was $512 million.[3] The case involved a computer code patent claim involving selecting a date from a pop-up calendar and the use of a stylus.[3]

Cooper v. Brown[edit]

After a panel of the Ninth Circuit affirmed Judge Huff's ruling in a death penalty case, the court declined to hear the case en banc over strenuous dissents. In a rare concurrence, Judge Pamela Ann Rymer praised Judge Huff's "thoughtful 159-page ruling" and "meticulous detail." [4]

Yet, what was most notable about this decision was the vigorous dissent of eleven judges. In unusually strong language, the mild mannered and respected jurist Judge William Fletcher wrote: "There is no way to say this politely. The district court failed to provide Cooper a fair hearing." As the New York Times reported, he began this lengthy dissent with these unforgettable words: "The State of California may be about to execute an innocent man."[5]

Sergeant Gary A. Stein v. United States of America[edit]

This case involved a Marine seeking a Temporary Restraining Order against the Marine Corps. The Plaintiff stated that the Marine Corps did not follow their own procedures, timing and content of the administrative separation proceedings were a deliberate attempt to "RailRoad" the Marine by denying him time to prepare a defense or the ability to seek legal counsel. The majority of the complaint was ignored and the motion was declined on the basis that panel's decision was not a sure thing and the client was unable to demonstrate irreparable harm. [6] [7]


  1. ^ "24th Annual Intellectual Property Law Conference, April 1-4, 2009" (PDF). Retrieved 2016-09-30. 
  2. ^ "U.S. judge upholds Alcatel award in Microsoft case". Reuters. 2008-06-20. Retrieved 2016-09-30. 
  3. ^ a b "Business Technology | Blogs". Retrieved 2016-09-30. 
  4. ^ [1][dead link]
  5. ^ [2][dead link]
  6. ^ "04-03 Stein Complaint". Retrieved 2016-09-30. 
  7. ^ "Request To Postpone Marine's Discharge Hearing Denied - KGTV ABC10 San Diego". 2012-04-04. Retrieved 2016-09-30. 

External links[edit]

Legal offices
Preceded by
William Benner Enright
Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of California