The Rise of False Patent Marking Suits

A recent Federal Circuit decision has exponentially raised the potential recoveries in false patent marking actions. Because anyone can bring this type of lawsuit, aggressive plaintiffs have flooded the district courts with false patent marking actions in the past three months. Most or all of these suits have targeted products marked with expired patent numbers, which requires very little pre-lawsuit investigation. Companies should be aware that many of these plaintiffs may be looking for a quick settlement and should also look out for both judicial and legislative developments in this area of law.