Sunday, December 2, 2012

Jeruss - Effects of Patent Monetization Entities on US Litigation

In The America Invents Act 500: Effects of Patent Monetization Entities on US Litigation Sara Jeruss of Lex Machina Inc., Robin Cooper Feldman of University of California Hastings College of the Law, Joshua H. Walker of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, Stanford Law School wrote an interesting paper that will be published in Duke Law & Technology Review.

The article explores non-practicing entities (NPE) or patent trolls or what they call patent monetizers affect on U.S. patent litigation. Although Professor Feldman is not the lead author, it bears her signature in terms of meticulous research, transparent assumptions, and careful conclusions.

The article flowed out of Congress' mandate for the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to study the effects of non-practicing entities on patent litigation. Using Lex Machina's database they collected and coded a set of patent lawsuits filed over the past five years then analyzed what it meant.

Key findings? Patent monetizers' lawsuits increased from 22% to nearly 40% of the cases in the last five years. Universities are not that big of a player, accounting for only 0.2% of the lawsuits. Patent monetizers tend to settle prior to a summary judgment decision, which points to what may be involved. Even though it calls NPE's "modern villains" of the system, it doesn't resolve for me whether patent monetizers are bad or good for the US, but does confirm their rising participation in patent litigation.

Copyright © 2012 Robert Moll. All rights reserved.