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Thursday, October 11, 2012

$VRNG - Two Infographics Showing Number of Cases Settled Before Trial and more.

"What does this show?  It suggests that there has been an increase in the number of patent cases commenced for strategic purposes, which corresponds to cases being terminated prior to court action.  In the patent world if the defendant reasonably fears being sued the defendant can initiate litigation in a forum of their choosing, which is not typically where the patentee would prefer to litigate.  For that reason increasingly lawsuits are filed without anyone ever knowing they were in the cross-hairs.  The first time you are likely to learn that someone thinks you are infringing is when you are served.
These charts also show that the real growth in patent litigation is after the court gets involved but prior to the pre-trial conference.  So there has been discovery and almost certainly a Markman ruling relating to the meaning of the claims.
What these charts also show is that the overwhelming majority of patent litigation ends with settlement, not a verdict. This becomes even more clear when you focus in on the total number of patent trials each year, which has averaged 99.9 trials per year since 1980. With such constant numbers of trials in the face of significant filing growth it is impossible to justify the claims that patent trials are out of control."

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