Microsoft Seeks Five Months for Appeals Filings

Microsoft Corp. is accusing the government of trying to "short-circuit" the appeals process in its antitrust case by not giving the company enough time to prepare its case.

In legal papers filed Thursday, Microsoft reiterated its request to the U.S. District Court of Appeals for an approximately five-month timetable for written briefs. The government wants to wrap up the appeals process in less than three months or by the end of the year.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for Washington will determine the written briefing schedule and will likely move quickly in ordering a briefing schedule now that the government and Microsoft have submitted their arguments.

Given that the case "threatens Microsoft's very existence," Microsoft said, the company has a responsibility to seek enough time to present its appeal. The company also said the written briefs process would have been over by November had the government not attempted, unsuccessfully, to get the Supreme Court to review the case.

"It is truly remarkable that appellees now seek to shift to Microsoft the blame for, and the burden of, the delay that resulted from their tactical decision to seek direct review in the Supreme Court," Microsoft said.

The government is attempting to get the Appeals Court review completed by the fall of next year so it is ready for the Supreme Court session that begins next October.

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