What is patent infringement?
According to United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) “Patent infringement is the act of making, using, selling, or offering to sell a patented invention, or importing into the United States a product covered by a claim of a patent without the permission of the patent owner”.
This means that before there can be a patent infringement, your works or products must have patent right. Patent is covered by federal law. So, you can file for patent infringement in any federal district court in the United States.
To determine any form of infringement, you have to carefully check the patents “claims”. The patent claims contain all the scopes of the patent. The scopes are what you compare with the infringer’s products. You can establish Patent infringement if both claims matches.
Another way of establishing infringement is “doctrine of equivalents”. This means that even if your patent claims fails to explicitly show any violation on your patent, court can still find case of infringement. This happens if your patent and the infringer’s are much equal in how they work and function.
If your lawsuit against the infringer is successful, the court can issue a court order called an injunction. It will prevent the infringer from current and future infringement. This process thereby protects you from further damages.
Also, The court can help you and the infringer reach an arrangement. With this kind of arrangement, the infringer can continue to use your patent but with your permission. In exchange for a licensing fee. This is a win-win situation.
Pursuing patent infringement can go two ways: it’s either you win or you lose depending on the defense option the infringer decides to take. The infringer can decide to:
There are three conditions that may require a court to dismiss your patent infringement lawsuit. Working with a patent attorney from the beginning, will help you see if there is a loophole that could make the court declare your patent invalid.