05. December 2014

Enforcement of Software Patents in the United States still possible

After the US Supreme Court's recent decision in Alice Corp v. CLS Bank, business method and software patents have been increasingly difficult to become enforced in US courts. The case law as to the scope and effects of the Alice decision has been rather blurry so far and the consequences of this decision are subject to heated debates amongst scholars.

Despite the Alice-decision, the US law firm Brinks Gilson & Lione in cooperation with the Swiss law firm Rentsch Partner AG successfully assisted one of their clients in enforcing two software patents in the US. The litigation, which lasted for several years, was recently resolved by a consent judgment. A decision on summary judgment motions that was issued before said consent judgment considered the software patents at issue to be valid even in view of the recent Alice decision. Besides, the parties have concluded a broader settlement agreement, the detail terms of which are confidential.

From this recent case, it appears that patents on technical methods using software still remain a real asset, even in the US (see also