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U.S. companies are increasingly using business methods that require participation and cooperation, both formally and informally, with other companies to bring products and services to consumers. This integration has posed challenges to both patent holders and accused infringers, due to the unsettled nature of the applicable law when multiple actors, rather than a single entity, are involved in alleged infringement of method claims. In two much-watched and much-anticipated cases, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit is currently reviewing en banc whether multiple actors should each be liable for patent infringement where they each perform some, but not all, of the elements of a claimed method.

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