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Fundamentals of Patent Litigation You Need to Know

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If you have been a party to infringing a patent or are the patent owner and believe that someone has infringed your patent, you will need to understand the basics of patent litigation. Patent litigation is a complex and specialized area of law, so it is essential to choose a patent prosecution law firm with experience in this area. Below are some fundamentals you need to know about patent litigation.

By understanding these basics, you’ll be better prepared for whatever comes your way during patent litigation.

Table of Contents  
What is Patent Litigation
What are the different types of patent litigation?
Who are the parties to patent litigation?
What are the steps involved in Patent Litigation?
Choose a patent prosecution law firm wisely…

What is Patent Litigation?

Patent litigation is the process of resolving disputes over the ownership and infringement of patents. Patent litigation can be used to resolve a variety of disputes, including

  • Who owns a particular patent?
  • Who has the right to make, use, or sell products covered by a patent?
  • Who is infringing on a patent?
  • What damages should be awarded for patent infringement?

What are the different types of patent litigation?

Patent litigation can be of a few different types, namely:

Direct litigation: When an infringing product performs the same function as a patented invention, they are direct infringers. This means that their actions have been intentional and without authorization from the patent holder.

Indirect litigation is of two types: Contributory infringement and Infringement by Inducing.

Contributory infringement is a legal concept that refers to purchasing or importing materials with intent to use in an item patented by someone else. The other litigation, Inducement, is an indirect infringement where one does not actually infringe on any patents but instead causes someone else to do so.

Literal infringement: Literal infringement occurs when an infringer uses, sells, or imports a patented item in its exact representation. This means they were likely aware of the patent but chose to ignore it.

The doctrine of Equivalents Infringement:

If an infringing item does not exactly duplicate the patented process, but still performs identical functions and yields similar results to that of your patent, then it is a violation of the patent law. The judge might rule the law in your favor even if the product is more efficient.

Who are the parties to patent litigation?

Parties who can sue for patent litigation include:

  • Patent holder
  • Patent co-owner
  • A licensee as the patent holder

Parties who can be sued for patent litigation include:

  • Contributes to patent acts
  • A party creates, utilises, sells, or imports an infringing product.

What are the steps involved in Patent Litigation?

A plaintiff, while filing patent litigation, must follow the steps below:

  • Establish the parties: Naming the correct plaintiffs and defendants is necessary for applying for a patent.
  • Set subject matter jurisdiction: A plaintiff must have the right to sue in a court with specific subject matter jurisdiction.
  • Determine personal jurisdiction: A plaintiff must have the right to sue the defendant in a court with general personal jurisdiction.
  • File a complaint alleging infringement: This is where the specifics of the infringement are detailed and relief is requested from the court.
  • Serve the complaint and summons: After the complaint is filed, it must be served on the defendants along with a summons.
  • Filing an answer to the complaint: Once the defendants have received the complaint, they will have a certain amount of time to file an answer.
  • The pretrial phase: This is where both sides will investigate the facts of the case and prepare for trial. The discovery process is often used during this phase.
  • Trial: If the case cannot be resolved during the pretrial phase, the civil litigation lawyer will take it to trial.

Choose a patent prosecution law firm wisely…

When it comes to patent litigation, you need a law firm with experience in this area. Litigation can be complex and time-consuming, so you want to choose a law firm with the knowledge and expertise to handle your case.

At Mishoura we connect you to the best patent litigation law firms to assist you amiably on all aspects of your patent litigation case. Reach out to learn more about our services.

Written By – Omar Shams

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