Filewrapper®

U.S. Supreme Court Limits Where Patent Infringement Defendants Can be Sued

May 22, 2017
Post by Jonathan L. Kennedy

In TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, the U.S. Supreme Court limited the locations that patent infringement suits can be brought against a defendant, i.e., venue for the lawsuit.  Proper venue is established by 28 U.S.C. § 1400(b) as the place where (1) the defendant resides or (2) where the defendant has committed the acts of infringement and has a regular and established place of business.  For U.S. business entities, the place of residence had been broadly interpreted pursuant to another federal statute (28 U.S.C. § 1391(c)) to jurisdictions other than where the company is incorporated but anywhere it is subject to personal jurisdiction.  This allowed companies to be sued for patent infringement where they have sold or shipped products.  The Supreme Court’s holding inTC Heartland, has limited the defendant’s residence to the state where the Defendant is incorporated.

 

In TC Heartland, Kraft Foods Group Brand sued TC Heartland for patent infringement in the District of Delaware on the basis that TC Heartland had sold infringing products in Delaware.  TC Heartland is a company organized in Indiana with its business operations in Indiana as well.  It asserted that Delaware was the wrong venue for the patent infringement lawsuit.  Ultimately, the Supreme Court agreed in a unanimous (8-0) decision (recently confirmed Justice Gorsuch did not take part in consideration of the case) and held, “As applied to domestic corporations, ‘reside[nce]’ in § 1400(b) refers only to the State of incorporation.”  However, it should be noted that U.S. business entities can still be sued in a jurisdiction where infringement has occurred and where the defendant has a regular and established place of business.

Jonathan Kennedy is an Intellectual Property Attorney in the Biotechnology/Chemical Patent Practice Group at McKee, Voorhees & Sease, PLC. For additional information please visit www.ipmvs.com or contact Jonathan directly via email at jonathan.kennedy@ipmvs.com.

 




Post Categories

Comments (0)
Post a Comment



Captcha Image
Return to the Filewrapper Blog

Search Posts

Purpose

The attorneys of McKee, Voorhees & Sease, P.L.C. designed this blog as an informational and educational resource about intellectual property law for our clients, other attorneys, and the public as a whole. Our goal is to provide cutting-edge information about recent developments in intellectual property law, including relevant case law updates, proposed legislation, and intellectual property law in the news.

Disclaimer

McKee, Voorhees & Sease, P.L.C. provides this blog for general informational purposes only. By using this blog, you agree that the information on this blog does not constitute legal or other professional advice and no attorney-client or other relationship is created between you and McKee, Voorhees & Sease, P.L.C. Do not consider this blog to be a substitute for obtaining legal advice from a qualified, licensed attorney. While we try to revise this blog on a regular basis, it may not reflect the most current legal developments. We consciously refrain from expressing opinions on this blog and instead, offer it as a form of information and education, however if there appears an expression of opinion, realize that those views are indicative of the individual and not of the firm as a whole.

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Enter your name and email address to receive the latest news and updates from us and our attorneys.

Subscribe to: MVS Newsletter

Subscribe to: Filewrapper® Blog Updates

  I have read and agree to the terms and conditions of McKee, Vorhees & Sease, P.L.C.