A bankruptcy court in New York has given Kodak clearance to sell off its digital imaging patents, despite objections from Apple and FlashPoint Technologies. Apple and FlashPoint initially challenged Kodak's patent auction back in January, claiming ownership over ten of the patent assets up for sale. Kodak finally responded to these claims last month, filing a lawsuit against the two companies for allegedly interfering with its post-bankruptcy sale. A decision in this case is still pending, but Kodak is already claiming a major victory with Monday's decision, which asserts the company's ownership over its patents, and allows it to open its auction regardless of what transpires in its suit against Apple.

"The Apple and FlashPoint claims are baseless and Kodak will still seek dismissal on summary judgment in July," said Timothy Lynch, Kodak's Vice President and Chief Intellectual Property Officer. "However, today’s ruling provides a Court-approved process allowing buyers to acquire the patents free and clear of all ownership allegations, regardless of the status of the dispute with Apple and Flashpoint at the time of closing." Lynch went on to thank the court for enabling "us to move ahead with our patent auction in a timely manner and with clarity on ownership for the winning buyer." Kodak plans to open its auction in August.