How is a patent attorney different than Amazon seller attorneys?
Patent violations are becoming increasingly prevalent among Amazon sellers. Whether you are a patent owner or an Amazon seller, you need the right kind of legal expertise when it comes to patent infringement. Patent agents do not litigate and, therefore, have little to no infringement experience. Trademark attorneys who are not registered with the USPTO patent bar cannot file patents. To win a patent violation on the e-commerce platform, you need an Amazon patent attorney with experience in infringement litigation.
Keep in mind that our firm might represent the other side so please do not share any confidential information unless and until we confirm no conflicts of interest.
Is a patent attorney specially licensed?
In the US, a patent attorney has at least two licenses, a state bar license and a patent bar license.
First, patent attorneys are licensed under a particular state in order to practice law. For example, I am an attorney licensed under the state of California.
Second, patent attorneys are registered with the USPTO to file patents on behalf of clients.
Those who meet only the first requirement might call themselves IP attorneys or trademark attorneys. However, they cannot file patents for others although they can litigate IP cases.
Non-lawyers who are registered with the USPTO call themselves “patent agents,” but they cannot practice law. Since patent agents cannot litigate, they typically have very little patent infringement experience.
What kind of experience matters in winning a patent infringement case?
Amazon patent violations boil down to one issue, infringement. To win a patent infringement case, you should consider hiring legal counsel who meet both of the following criteria:
- patent attorneys licensed to practice before the USPTO; and
- patent infringement litigation experience.
Recognize that many patent lawyers may meet the first condition, but not the second. In other words, there are patent lawyers who merely file patent applications, but have not had much experience litigating infringement cases.
Yet, it is the second requirement that can make the difference in winning a patent infringement dispute.
Why does patent infringement litigation experience matter?
For patent owners, the goal is to remove infringing listings by Amazon sellers. To prove infringement, you need to show how your patent claim covers the accused products. Patent attorneys with infringement litigation experience will be better equipped to make this showing than lawyers who only prosecute applications.
For Amazon sellers attempting to sell goods without violating patents, the goal is to steer clear of any landmines. In either case, you need a patent attorney with experience in studying the claims of a patent in order to advise you on what the patent does and does not cover.
Lawyers who market themselves solely as Amazon trademark attorneys might not have the requisite patent infringement experience to help guide you through complicated patent disputes.
For example, a utility patent might have only one independent claim and that claim could recite several arguably questionable features. How will your patent attorney argue that such features are found in the accused product? If you are the accused Amazon seller, how will your patent attorney show that such claimed features do not exist in your product?
How to Use an Amazon Patent Attorney to Make Successful Arguments
If accused infringers are invited to participate in a neutral patent evaluation, should an Amazon seller accept the invitation? Many Amazon sellers may be hesitant to proceed without knowing if they have a strong noninfringement argument.
Under such circumstances, it may help to have a preliminary comparison of the asserted patent and accused products to get a rough sense of your probability of success. Keep in mind that such preliminary analyses may still be costly especially if a utility patent is involved.
Need an Amazon patent attorney to win your patent violation so you can sell more products?
To request a cost estimate for a preliminary analysis, feel free to email Vic the patent number and a link to the accused product.
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