Are patent litigation battles in courts and the rewards for being victorious in these battles getting bigger? The 2009 statistics recently published by CorporateCounsul.com sure seem to indicate this is true. The publication revealed the “top ten victories from 2009’s intellectual property litigation docket” which featured some stunning rewards within these ranks including a patent award verdict in favor of Johnson & Johnson for $1.64 billion which is the highest ever recorded.
A press release on the same subject lists some of the other big victories published by General Counsel and said:
Other notable IP litigation victories that made this year’s list include:
- A rare permanent injunction against Microsoft won by Canadian software maker i41–plus a damages award of $290 million.
- A major win by seven Hollywood movie companies granting a preliminary injunction blocking the sale of RealDVD, a software program that would let users make personal copies of their own DVDs on up to five computers.
- Versata Software’s $138.64 million verdict against German software vendor SAP AG for infringing a pair of patents covering software that helps customers manage pricing for products along complex distribution networks.
- A California federal district court ruling that allowed Superman co-creator Jerry Siegel’s family to recapture key rights to the superhero, the latest news in the ongoing epic battle between DC Comics and Warner Brothers on one side and the Superman heirs on the other.
It’s clear the litigation battles are getting bigger and the rewards reaped by the victors are also on the rise. For those on the other side of these litigation battles, the damages are just as big and the role of information in these battles is ever-increasing in importance. Patent dataand access to great patent knowledge management tools and technology has become instrumental on both sides of patent litigation. Those who are looking to protect their patents and keep an eye out for infringements use extensive technology to ensure deeper insights into what is going on within their space and be equipped to take on anyone who infringe on their IP. On the other side, those seeking loopholes or spaces within the existing patents to find lucrative opportunities also need to have reliable research capabilities to avoid any traps or mines in the form of patents.
With litigation being either a battle that must be one or one that must be completely avoided depending on which side of the legal scale one is on, having a strong IP knowledge management infrastructure in place can provide an upper hand. For now, with the way 2010 is shaping up, we are bound to see some equally big legal battles over patents and equally large amounts of settlements switching hands.