After President Barack Obama signed the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act in 2011, there was a steady decline in patent lawsuits. However, according to data compiled by Unified Patents, close to 900 district court lawsuits regarding patents were filed in the second quarter of 2019 alone. It is unclear what is causing this increase, but when the economy slows down there is an uptick in intellectual property litigation. The emergence of cannabis products and technology related to smartphones has also had a major impact on the trademark space.
It remains to be seen whether this uptick is the start of a trend or simply a blip. It may take several months to determine whether a trend is emerging. Within the past decade, industries that generated more patent lawsuits are life sciences and technology that allows smartphones to communicate over the internet, according to an Ann Arbor-based intellectual property litigation attorney. Because of the number of new products across many industries, there has been a spike in lawsuits.
Congress Weighs in on IP Litigation
In an effort to prevent patent infringements, Senators reintroduced the Support Technology and Research for Our Nation’s Growth and Economic Resilience (“STRONGER”) Patents Act of 2019. They also met with other industry representatives to discuss intellectual property and develop legislation.
Federal legislation may make it easier for patent owners to protect their copyrights thanks to the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2019 (“CASE Act”). The bill, which includes House and Senate versions, seeks to create a small-claims process for copyright holders to obtain compensation for infringed works. The recovery amount will be capped at $15,000 per work. Currently, if a copyright holder pursues claims in federal court, they may face legal costs that exceed the judgment. In cases like this, it is generally recommended that copyright holders avoid litigation
The Defend Trade Secrets Act was established in 2016 to protect trade secrets. Prior to that, each state had its own system. The Defect Trade Secrets Act was introduced after the Economic Espionage Act of 1996, which gave the U.S. attorney general the power to prosecute an individual of a company that is involved in stealing trade secrets. Those who violate the act may be fined up to $500,000 and face up to 10 years in prison. Corporations may incur fines of up to $10 million.
Patent disputes can be very expensive, so businesses should consider the costs associated with making and marketing products versus the cost of defending intellectual property rights.
Philadelphia Business Lawyers at Sidkoff, Pincus & Green P.C. Assist Clients with IP Litigation Issues
If you need legal assistance with a patent lawsuit, you are urged to contact the Philadelphia business lawyers at Sidkoff, Pincus & Green P.C. as soon as possible. We have a proven track record of reaching successful outcomes for clients who have trademark issues. To schedule a confidential consultation, call us today at 215-574-0600 or contact us online. Located in Philadelphia, we serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.