Once a patent is issued, it is up
to the owner to enforce it. If friendly negotiations fail,
enforcement involves two basic steps:
1. Making a determination that the
patent is being illegally violated (infringed)
2. Filing a federal court action to
enforce the patent.
Patent enforcement is very complicated. Patent holders have the
burden of proving infringement. And litigation costs are
prohibitively high, especially if you are in individual or a small
business. Because enforcing a patent can be a long and
expensive process, many patent infringement suits aren't filed. A
patent infringer with deep pockets, such as a large corporation,
has significant advantages over an individual inventor or small
business. That's why it's important to have a well-financed partner
that can cover the costs of a patent infringement lawsuit.