Patent Litigation Trends

NPE Impact is Focus of PwC Study

A very useful study was recently released from PwC.  “A Closer Look –Patent litigation trends and the increasing impact of nonpracticing entities” is an in-depth look at patent litigation in the U.S. The research was completed in August but distributed last week.

PwC includes a wealth of litigation trends and statistics, as well as data on which courts are more favorable to plaintiffs and defendants. Aron Levko led the PwC team that conducted “A Closer Look.”

Among the key findings:

• Damages awards for NPEs have averaged more than double those for practicing entities since 1995.

• NPEs have been successful 29 percent of the time overall versus 41 percent for practicing entities, due to the relative lack of success for NPEs at summary judgment; however, both have roughly a 2/3 win rate at trial.

• The disparity between jury and bench awards has widened and is likely the contributing factor in the significant increase in use of juries since 1995.

• While the median time-to-trial has remained fairly constant since 1995, significant variations exist between jurisdictions.

I wonder why PwC waited so long to release the study broadly?

One comment

  1. I found the article to be very beneficial information for anyone involved in or looking to file a patent action. As to the chart showing the jury award amounts, it would be useful to see what happened to the jury award on appeal. I know that in the i4i v. Microsoft litigation, in which I served as an expert for i4i on willful infringement and no inequitable conduct, the judgment was left totally in tact by the CAFC, including $290 million in past damages, including $40 million for the finding of willful infringement, and the issuance of an injunction against further sale of Word 2003 and 2007 effective Jan. 11, 2010. However, in the Cornell v. HP case in which I served as a licensing expert for Cornell, after the Judge heard certain portions of the case, the jury award was significantly reduced from $184 million to $54 million.


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