Washington – The Supreme Court has a case that could give patent trolls even more tools and make a common defense — a good faith belief of non-infringement — irrelevant. The Computer & Communications Industry Association has filed a friend of the court brief in the Commil v. Cisco case, explaining that granting additional power to patent assertion entities would lead to unnecessary and harmful developments in patent and possibly even copyright law.

In the brief, CCIA explained that lowering the bar for patent plaintiffs to sue businesses only indirectly involved “is unnecessary because patent owners still have a complete remedy for infringement of their patents under 35 U.S.C. § 271(a). It is harmful because patent assertion entities (PAEs) would be able to leverage such a change to do even more damage to the economy and to American businesses.”

The following can be attributed to CCIA patent counsel Matt Levy:

“The Federal Circuit correctly applied the law in this case. However this case is resolved, it is imperative that the Court not overturn the requirement that intent to induce patent infringement requires more than just knowledge of the patent. To erode this standard would threaten innovation and investment in the information technology industry and embolden patent trolls.

“Patent trolls’ entire business model relies on the difficulty of proving patents invalid. Their victims tend to settle because mounting any sort of defense is extremely expensive. If the Supreme Court interprets the law as Commil requests, patent trolls would have new ways to find the deepest pockets to sue. That would be a terrible outcome.”

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