The Supreme Court’s holding in eBay, Inc. et al. v. MercExchange, L.L.C., No. 05-131 (May 15, 2006) may cost patent trolls millions, if not billions, of dollars in future licensing revenue by potentially denying them a powerful tool in future settlement negotiations — the threat of a permanent injunction. In eBay, the Court rejected a historically honored rule that district courts nearly automatically issue a permanent injunction upon a finding of patent infringement. The Court found that nothing in the Patent Act indicated that Congress intended to depart from a traditional four-factor test applied by courts in determining the equitable issue of whether an injunction should issue. According to the Court, to obtain a permanent injunction against a defendant, “[the patent] plaintiff must demonstrate: (1) that it has suffered an irreparable injury; (2) that remedies available at law, such as monetary damages, are inadequate to compensate for that injury; (3) that, considering the balance of hardships between the plaintiff and the defendant, a remedy in equity is warranted; and (4) that the public interest would not be disserved by a permanent injunction.” Under this rule, the grant or denial of an injunction is within the trial court’s discretion. In short, the days of per se patent injunctions are a thing of the past.


This content has been archived. It is available through our partners, LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law.

To view this content, please continue to their sites.

Not a Lexis Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Not a Bloomberg Law Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law are third party online distributors of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law customers are able to access and use ALM's content, including content from the National Law Journal, The American Lawyer, Legaltech News, The New York Law Journal, and Corporate Counsel, as well as other sources of legal information.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]