The US Supreme Court and “Induced Infringement”

The US Supreme Court and "Induced Infringement" 2

Akin Gump – “Supreme Court Clarifies Induced Infringement: A Defendant Cannot Be Liable for Inducing Infringement Where No One Has Directly Infringed,” an article by Akin Gump intellectual property partner Sanford Warren and associate Jesse Snyder, has been published by IRMI, the International Risk Management Institute.

The article discusses the June 2, 2014, U.S. Supreme Court decision in Limelight Networks, Inc. v. Akamai Techs., which held “A defendant is not liable for inducing infringement under §271(b) when no one has directly infringed under §271(a) or any other statutory provision,” and reviews both the previous Federal Circuit standard and Justice Alito’s opinion.

The authors note that “This opinion reverses the previous standard proffered by the federal circuit that a showing of direct infringement was not necessary so long as the patentee could demonstrate that every claimed method step was performed by entities under the control and encouragement of the accused inducer” and conclude, “The implications of this opinion are clear: accused infringers now have a stronger noninfringement position when contending with method claims involving terms that necessarily implicate multiple actors.”
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