Sunday, December 31, 2017

Supreme Court - Impression Products, Inc. v. Lexmark International, Inc. - Patent Exhaustion

In Impression Products, Inc. v. Lexmark International, Inc., the US Supreme Court held that a patent owner's authorized sale exhausts all patent rights.

As the Court stated when a patent owner chooses to sell an item, that product is no longer within the limits of the monopoly and instead becomes the private, individual property of the purchaser with the rights and benefits that come along with ownership. A patent owner is free to set the price and negotiate contracts with purchasers but may not by virtue of his patent control the use or disposition of the product after ownership passes to the purchaser. The sale terminates all patent rights to that item.

Copyright © 2017 Robert Moll. All rights reserved.