A patent is a right granted by the government to exclude others from using the invention claimed in the patent for a limited time. Inventors can prosecute their own patents, but most often utilize the services of a patent prosecution attorney to work with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to obtain patents. When a competitor infringes a patent, patentees turn to patent litigation attorneys to enforce the patents in court. Substantially fewer than 1% of all patents granted are ever litigated. Litigation is expensive and time consuming. Many patent disputes are resolved without litigation, although the weakening of patent rights in recent years has made that less likely of an outcome—alleged infringers feel that they have a few avenues to challenge the validity of the patent with manageable risk. However, whether litigated or not, a patent is only more than a wall decoration or statistic if it can be enforced. Because so few patents are litigated, they are not always prosecuted with litigation in mind. A patent litigation attorney will be able to provide insights into the possible enforceability of a patent that may not have been considered extensively during the patent prosecution process.
Many patentees obtain whole patent families, rather than single patents covering a technology. While more costly, this allows the patentee to capture the full scope of the invention, allows for some level of protection against invalidation, and allows different patents to focus on different or evolving aspects of the technology. The existence of patent families also gives patent litigation attorneys a choice of patents to assert. Some members of the patent families may be a closer fit for the accused infringement. Others may avoid invalidity issues that have developed in the law after the prosecution of the patents.
Our patent litigation attorneys can help determine whether litigation to enforce your patent would be appropriate. Please contact Jonathan Rotter for more information about enforcing your pharmaceutical patents, drug patents, medical patents, medical device patents, surgical device patents, surgical instrument patents, therapeutic patents, chemical patents, optical patents , optics patents, biotechnology patents (biotech patents), life science patents, consumer product patents, industrial process patents, mechanical patents, agriculture patents, consumer technology patents, and household patents.