Induced Infringement under US Patent Law
Jatin Jalundhwala, Joint President Legal and Company Secretary, Adani Group
Anagha Tendulkar, Patent In-house counsel, Cipla
Induced infringement finds its basis in 35 U.S.C. § 271(b) and holds a person, liable if he actively causes infringement, even if the actor himself is not the direct infringer. This is one of the doctrines that helps protect, for limited time, the inventors’ exclusive right to their inventions, essentially by awarding liability to those responsible for infringement. The jurisprudence of induced infringement is rapidly evolving, especially in pharmaceutical cases, and warrants the study of evolution of the doctrine to understand it completely.
This paper looks into how United States patent law came to recognize induced infringement, which was earlier not separate from contributory infringement. This paper further explores the development of the doctrine over the years. It also looks into different aspects that make up the philosophy of induced infringement and give rise to the essential elements that are required to prove inducement of infringement. Finally, it also discusses case law to show how the doctrine has been applied by the courts to determine liability of those aiding and abetting infringement, if any.
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