You started a new business last year. You are producing and marketing a product that you had been developing for a long time. Recently, you received a letter accusing you of patent infringement and threatening a lawsuit.
The lawsuit may claim that the infringing party’s product, method, service, etc. involves one or more parts of a patent. The infringing party may claim having no knowledge of the patent or of any infringement based upon:
• Not utilizing the invention described in the patent.
• Not infringing on any patent while in the geographical territory which is protected by the patent.
• Not infringing on any patent because the patent in question has expired.
• Not infringing on any patent because the patent in question is invalid due to the invention’s patent containing errors.
• Not infringing on any patent because a license has been issued to the accused infringing party to operate under the patent.
Patents are geographical in nature. A patent is only enforceable in the country in which it was issued. Patents are also valid for a specified amount of time. A patent lawsuit is both expensive and takes a long time; it would not be unusual if it takes months, if not years, before a patent lawsuit goes to trial.
A more cost effective and timely approach to resolving a patent dispute might be an out of court settlement. This might also result in a licensing agreement from the patent holder which allows the accused to continue with the activities and, perhaps, a lower cost impact that in a court. It might be helpful for the person being sued to get information from other people, companies, etc., who are being sued. An internet search on court dockets and cases may provide information which could be helpful.
With a patent attorney you can receive the assistance you need to research every aspect of the infringement accusation, including enforcing your rights, as well as ensuring you do not inadvertently infringe on the rights of others. A patent attorney may also be of assistance in advising you how to change your processes, changing the way you use the product, and any other changes to avoid infringement of the patent.
The information in this article is for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice, was not prepared by an attorney, and should not be taken as legal advice for any case or situation. Visit at techpats.com for more information.