Monday, July 6, 2009

Patent Markings

I stumbled on some scary news for inventors and entrepreneurs. This story has to do with patent lawsuits…with you as the possible accused. You better listen up!

The Associated Press disclosed a federal court ruling upholding the constitutionality of an age-old law allowing someone to sue companies – with evidence of “false markings” on products (namely, false claims… like expired or bogus patents).

Apparently, astute attorneys are seeking financial windfall from the forgotten laws regarding timely markings. Finding flaws, they can sue offenders in the name of the government and keep half of monies awarded. $500 per violation is reported. One particular attorney seems to be on a mission after nailing a company that was claiming protections… which expired some 20 years ago.

I guess you better be wary. Check your marking and update your patent numbers. Where there’s money to be made - you better believe some weasels will be lurking.

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