Antitrust claims in the United States can lead to significant damages and compulsory licenses. Misuse claims raise many of the same issues as antitrust claims but, if successful, can result in unenforceability of patents, putting at risk the typically large investments made to develop and protect the inventions and income streams from those inventions.
Finnegan’s antitrust attorneys have extensive experience in intellectual property antitrust and misuse issues. They regularly provide guidance to clients to minimize the risks that arise in licensing, litigations, and settlements, and they are prepared to litigate.
The licensing of patents, particularly by industry leaders, routinely raises potential patent antitrust and misuse questions, which both licensors and licensees need to consider to minimize risks. These issues arise in the context of licensing programs for portfolios of patents, individual patents, and pooled patents. They also arise in patent litigations as claims or counterclaims, which can multiply the risks or rewards of the litigation.
Finnegan attorneys have litigated patent antitrust and misuse claims in the context of patent infringement litigations and as separate antitrust cases. In those litigations where some clients have chosen to work with their existing specialists for antitrust issues, Finnegan’s attorneys with expertise in both patent and antitrust law have provided the essential interface between both teams to best represent our clients.