|Commentary authored by Findlay Craft Attorney Eric Findlay and published by The Texas Lawbook |
America Invents Act Leads to Patent Litigation Spike
|July 19, 2012 11:42 pm|
The Texas Lawbook:
The Dallas Morning News:
By Eric Findlay
Contributor to The Texas Lawbook
Eric Findlay is a trial lawyer with 20 years of experience representing a wide range of clients. He has been involved in hundreds of patent cases in the Eastern District of Texas and is the founding partner of Tyler, Texas-based Findlay Craft, LLP, and founding director and chairman of Level2Review.
When Congress passed the America Invents Act in September 2011, another law also kicked in: the law of unintended consequences.
President Barack Obama and Republican leadership in the U.S. House of Representatives sold the Act as being "vital to our ongoing efforts to modernize America's patent laws." Another intention of the law was to reduce patent litigation.
Yet, in the nine months since the law was signed, new patent infringement filings are up significantly across Texas.
The number of new patent cases filed in the Northern District of Texas during the first half of 2012 more than doubled the number filed during the first six months of 2011. The Eastern District saw its new patent filings jump 63 percent. The Western and Southern districts witnessed significant increases, too.
In fact, the number of patent-related lawsuits filed in the Eastern District in the first half of 2012 is nearly equal to the number of cases filed for all 2010.
It's hard to say what the long-term impacts of the America Invents Act may hold for the federal court system. In the short term, though, it appears that the Act is not preventing companies from sending attorneys to courtroom patent fights.
© 2012 The Texas Lawbook
© 2012 The Dallas Morning News
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