A Federal Circuit decision dramatically increasing potential fines in "false marking" cases has unleashed a wave of whistleblower suits accusing companies of falsely labeling their products as covered by patents. Since the ruling, plaintiffs lawyers have filed more than 130 suits, and defense lawyers are bracing for more. But the lawsuit pileup could be short-lived, as pending Federal Circuit appeals would curb such suits, and proposed legislation would allow only competitors harmed by a rival's false marking to file such suits.
Federal Circuit Ruling Sparks Surge of Patent Whistleblower Suits
The National Law Journal
April 5, 2010