A California jury has determined that in the case of Electronic Arts vs. former Madden NFL designer Robin Antonick, the deadline for filing a lawsuit has not passed since Antonick did not suspect wrongdoings by EA before 2005, Bloomberg reports.
According to Antonick, the realization was made in 2009. The lawsuit, initiated in 2011, alleges that EA breached a contract with Antonick and owes him unpaid royalties. Under said contract, Antonick is allegedly owed for Madden NFL 11, which apparently uses material based off the designer's original concepts. Antonick is seeking $16 million in damages and another $200 million from pre-1996 profits.
According to a press release from Antonick's lawyer, Rob Carey, the jury's ruling is a "major validation" of Antonick's testimony.
"This was by far EA's strongest defense, and the jury's verdict unanimously supported Mr. Antonick, which also means the jury probably thinks some significant information was concealed," Carey said.
Speaking with Polygon via email, EA issued the following statement: "While we're disappointed that the trial will proceed, we are confident that we will prevail on the merits once the evidence is presented."
With the first phase of the trial decided, the jury will now consider whether EA used Antonick's work without his knowledge. The trial is expected to continue July 1.