The sports technology industry is quickly growing, and more companies are finding themselves facing patent lawsuits. Inter partes review, a faster and less expensive alternative to litigation, provides benefits to companies involved in patent disputes. Inter partes review (IPR) is a trial proceeding conducted at the United States Patent and Trademark Office to review the patentability of claims in a patent. Typically, final determinations are issued within one year. IPR allows for less discovery than in district court and challenges may only be based on existing patents or publications, resulting in a cheaper streamlined process.
Legal processes in the United States tend to offer a lot of opportunities to try to reverse a decision if one doesn't go the way you prefer. Litigating challenges of patents is no exception. However, as we have written about previously, just because the option of an appeal is available doesn't necessarily mean that it should be taken.
It doesn't matter if you are a small technology company working your way up through the business ranks or an entity with a massive mother ship in Silicon Valley like Apple, intellectual property litigation tends to be a high-stakes game. Protecting your IP interests represents one significant challenge when you are a patent holder. On the other end of the scale is the prospect of your company facing accusations of infringement.
Assessing damages in any type of legal case can be a tricky proposition. Often the amount sought tries to encompass not only actual damages, but projected losses. In a personal injury case, the physical evidence can go a long way toward proving the loss. But damages in patent law can be harder to quantify.