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Archived updates for Friday, May 30, 2008

PWC Releases 2008 Patent Litigation Survey

According to PricewaterhouseCoopers' 2008 Patent Litigation Study:
  • The number of patent infringement actions filed has a compound average growth rate (CAGR) of 5.8% since 1991.
  • Meanwhile, the number of patents granted has a compound average growth rate (CAGR) of 3.8% since 1991—about two-thirds the growth rate of new case filings of patent infringement.
  • The inflation-adjusted median annual damages award has remained fairly stable over the last 13 years at $3.9 million from 1995 through 2000, and $3.8 million from 2001 through 2007.
  • Jury trial success rates have consistently outperformed their bench counterparts for every year since 1995.
  • Alleged infringers increase their trial success rates slightly as plaintiffs, but have not experienced the same increased success in summary judgments.
  • Recent awards by juries have been running several multiples of the amounts awarded by judges.
  • While jury awards have remained high, bench awards have decreased significantly.
    Patent holders have been successful 37% of the time overall, with a 19% win rate in summary judgments and a 57% win rate at trial.
  • 32% of summary judgments are appealed, with 59% modified or reversed; while 43% of trial decisions are appealed, with 67% modified or reversed.
  • 66% of cases reached trial three years from the date the initial complaint was filed.
    Virginia Eastern and Wisconsin Western districts have the shortest time-to-trial, (.88 and .91 yrs, no data on Georgia).
  • Certain federal district courts (particularly Virginia Eastern, California Central, and Pennsylvania Eastern) continue to be more favorable to patent holders, with shorter time-to-trial, higher success rates, and higher median damages awards.

On Wednesday, a federal jury in the Eastern District of Texas gave a big win to Sam Baxter of McKool Smith, awarding his client, Medtronic, $250 million in a patent infringement case against Boston Scientific. Howrey represented Boston Scientific.
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