A judge ruled on Thursday that the assets of LimeWire and its owner will not be frozen, according to people familiar with the decision. The RIAA had requested the court to freeze the assets of the company and owner Mark Gorton, alleging that assets had been moved to a family trust to avoid paying damages at some point in the future.

“While we believe this is a positive development in the case and one that certainly benefits our global user base, it doesn’t alter our long-stated strategy,” a LimeWire spokesperson said in a statement. “We will continue to work hard to garner the confidence and support of the music industry and other key stakeholders in the development of a new service that pushes the boundaries in digital music discovery and consumption.”

In a statement to Billboard, the RIAA downplayed the importance of this ruling. “The legal standard to freeze assets is very hard to meet and Judge Wood found that the record companies' interest in the assets of Limewire and Mark Gorton were adequately protected. Judge Wood set a date in January 2011 for a damages trial and we look forward to achieving a significant award against the defendants at that time.”

In March, a U.S. District judge granted summary judgment in favor of record labels’ claims against LimeWire for copyright infringement, engaging in unfair competition and inducing copyright infringement.
The RIAA has requested a restraining order to shut down LimeWire operations. The judge has not yet ruled on that matter.

In the meantime, LimeWire has said it continues to work on its much-anticipated music subscription service. Details have been scarce on this service, but a LimeWire spokesperson has told Billboard the service will be compatible with “virtually every mobile device” and acknowledged the service needs to be DRM-free to be fully compatible and portable. “Our goal is to create a service that will not slow users down in their enjoyment of music.”