Enhanced Pleading Requirments Apply in Patent Marking Cases

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Allegations that a party falsely marked unpatented articles with a U.S. patent number must include facts from which a court may reasonably infer that the party acted with intent to deceive the public. So held the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in granting a relatively rare interlocutory writ of mandamus on 15 March 2011, ordering the corresponding district court to grant a motion to dismiss.

This decision clarifies the law regarding patent marking and may facilitate resolution of some of the recent flurry of lawsuits alleging false-marking violations.

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