Member News

Apple v. Samsung – the Federal Circuit punts to the District Court to determine the test for design patent damages

One of the cases we are following closely in 2017 is Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., Nos. 2014-1335, 2015-1029 (Fed. Cir.), which involves the test for determining damages available for infringement of a design patent

On February 7, 2017, on remand from the U.S. Supreme Court, the Federal Circuit declined to address the key remaining legal issue in the Apple v. Samsung case – how a court should go about identifying the relevant “article of manufacture” for which a design patent owner is entitled to the infringer’s “total profit.”  Instead, the Federal Circuit remanded the case to the District Court for further proceedings, including the “opportunity to set forth a test for identifying the relevant article of manufacture.”  Given the Federal Circuit’s refusal to articulate a test for damages before remand, design patent owners will continue to face uncertainty for the foreseeable future.

Authored by
Robert M. Masters
Scott W. Doyle
Jonathan R. DeFosse
Ted M. Nissly

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