This blog sheds light on the ins and outs of patent violation to educate readers on its importance and the nature of punishment and tips to stay clear of patent infringement.
Infringement of a patent owner’s rights concerning an innovation is patent infringement. Unless authorised by the patent owner, creating, using, offering to sell, or selling something that has every element of a claimed claim or equivalent while the patent exists constitutes patent infringement.
For there to be infringement, the forbidden conduct must be performed in India or bring an infringing product into India after being manufactured elsewhere. To help readers as you know about the ins and outs of an infringement of a patent, we have touched on this topic in this informative article.
Patent Infringement: Explained
This occurs when someone uses, sells, imports, or manufactures a product created by someone else without authorisation. Patent infringement is simple since all patent information is public and available to anybody.
While the act may be easy, it is unlawful. If a patent holder decides to sue, the court will frequently intervene to stop the illegal conduct and, in some instances, penalise the infringement with penalties such as monetary awards to the patent holder. Because patented concepts frequently contain several portions or components, it is conceivable to have multiple claims for infringement of a single patent.
Understanding Key Patent Terms
Intellectual property attorneys widely use patent jargon, and as a result, others are unable to grasp it. There is so much patent terminology that you should know that there are little glossaries of the phrases and definitions.
Patent Infringement: Types
This occurs when a person or company utilises components of a patented concept, process, or technology without authorisation. Patent infringement is frequently referred to as stolen ideas or patent violations. It might entail selling or utilising the idea of the patented invention. You must first determine who is to blame before you sue an individual for patent infringement. It is not always as evident as you may believe. Understanding the various forms of patent infringement aids in determining who is responsible.
- Direct Infringement: It occurs when an individual develops an item without the consent of the patent owner. Here, the infringer does not need to be aware of the existence of the patent for the holder of the patent to take legal action against an individual for direct violation. Whether or not that person is mindful of the presence of a patent, that individual is not permitted to use, sell, make, offer, or publish an original invention.
- Unintended Infringement: The breacher might not have directly violated the patent. However, must have supported or assisted others in doing so.
- Induced Infringement: Inducing or convincing someone to create a patentable innovation is what this term alludes to. This word is frequently used interchangeably with the indirect breach.
- Contributory Infringement: It happens when someone gives a component or an invention to assist someone else in infringing on a patent. There must be no other acceptable usage for that portion or product.
- Literal Infringement: All aspects of an original invention or concept should exist in the copyrighted/patented product to show literal infringement in the court.
- Willful Infringement: This occurs when another individual or corporation uses an individual’s patented goods or ideas on purpose. Hiring a patent lawyer, who will presumably notify their client if an infringement is likely to happen, is a straightforward approach to refute willful infringement. In circumstances of disorderly infringement, it is typical for a judge to award triple damages, which can often serve to deter it owing to their enormity.
Here are some cases of infringement of patents:
- TVS vs BAJAJ
This case includes one dealing with patent infringement while the other with the expeditious resolution of IP (intellectual property) rights matters. This issue involves TVS Motor Company’s unlawful use of Bajaj’s DTSi (Plaintiff) technology. Plaintiff filed a patent form for it in 2002 and received a patent in 2005.
- Google vs Microsoft
Google and Microsoft battled over patent concerns regarding the Xbox game console and Motorola smartphone.
When Does Patent Infringement Take Place?
This happens when another party manufactures, sells, or uses a patented object without the patent owner’s consent. The owner may take legal steps for the infringing party to cease their actions and recover compensation for the unlawful usage. Because federal law protects intellectual property, the patent owner should file a lawsuit in a federal district court against the unauthorised party.
Patent owners should file infringement suits within 6 years after the exact date of infringement. If it is not filed within this time frame, it becomes time-barred.
Punishment for Infringement
Suppose the court determines that the infringement inflicts harm during or before the litigation. In that case, it may issue a preliminary injunction to prohibit the infringer from continuing their acts. To get a preliminary injunction, the individual appealing the request must demonstrate the following:
- It will not harm the public interest if the proposal gets granted.
- The case has a high level of merit and is likely to succeed.
- If the party violating is permitted to continue using the patent during the legal procedures, the patent holder may face further hardship.
- Preliminary injunctions are difficult to obtain and are rarely issued unless the adjudication has already demonstrated patent validity.
How to Avoid
To steer clear of a patent breach, you can employ a patent attorney to manage the patent procedure or contact a reputable legal services provider. The following are some suggestions for avoiding patent infringement:
- Begin Early and Maintain Your Diligence
During the concept stage of product development, it is the optimal time to start your patent infringement review. By recognising possible patent infringement concerns early on, you may eliminate product designs that pose a high lawsuit risk.
- Maintain Your Head Beyond the Sand
Most people will deliberately delay learning about a contender’s patent, believing that doing so would benefit them later. Overlooking a patent won’t help you after litigation, and it may result in a decision that you’ve knowingly violated a patent.
- Search the Patent(s) That You Might Be Violating on
You must determine which patent(s) you may be violating. You can accomplish this by performing the following actions:
- Patent search over the web
- Review contender’s product
- Contact the contender
The infringement of a patent is a problematic aspect of the Indian legal system. Working with a lawyer is essential whether you’re on patent infringement’s offensive or defensive side.