This is another forgotten draft from Feb 2018.
Last June in a previous posting I opined on the potential worst-case scenario for Canadian businesses that run afoul of US government restrictions on trade with Cuba. In that piece it was about travel companies that are subsidiaries of Canadian airlines.
In this piece at the Electronic Frontier Foundation it’s about application of Patent Law. The article is part of their Stupid Patent Of The Month series.
Essentially the meat of the piece concerns damages awarded to a patent holder for infringement.
If company A has obtained a patent in the USA for something, say a device, then if US company B sells essentially that same device to non-US company C which sells it in the USA the US court can award damages to A in an amount related to how much B made from what C sold in the USA. But if C sold that same device outside the USA then A has to take them to court in other jurisdictions where A has obtained the legal protection of a patent.
This is how the law has been applied up to now. US patents cover the USA. In other jurisdictions you need to get patents from those governments. But that might change if the Solicitor General has its way . . . potentially US patents could be considered global by US courts. And company B would end up having to fork over all the profit it made from selling company C the device that infringes on a US patent – even from products that never entered the USA.
IT all comes down to how the US interprets its own laws.