Patents help encourage innovation by protecting the intellectual property of businesses and individuals. If your company has invested enough in research and development to create a new process, software program or chemical compound, you want to protect what you have created.
Prosecuting a patent related to your company’s new, unique offering will ensure that your company is the only one that can utilize the patented design, genetics, manufacturing process or chemical formula. Anyone else who wants to mimic your product or process will probably need to pay royalties and get approval from your company.
Unfortunately, there are plenty of companies that will happily infringe on your patent with the expectation that you won’t enforce it. If you do you take a company to court for a patent violation, what can you expect if you are successful?
Federal law requires the payment of appropriate damages
Getting a patent can take months and often costs $15,000 or more, especially if the idea, process or product you intend to patent is particularly complex. The time and effort spent obtaining a patent would essentially be worthless if there weren’t consequences for violating intellectual property rights.
Federal law requires that the courts award you appropriate damages if they rule in your favor during a patent violation lawsuit. They should consider the impact of the infringement on your company. They should also consider what charges you typically assign for royalties. Federal law states that the damages assigned be at least what you would collect in royalties, along with interest and costs.
Learning about how patent enforcement penalizes those who infringe on your intellectual property will make patent enforcement easier for you to pursue.