Contingent Fee Patent Litigation
Contingency Fee | Patents | Trademarks | Intellectual Property Attorneys
Houston Intellectual Property Litigation: Texas Patent Law
PQE attorneys provide legal services across the full range of intellectual property rights, including patents, trademarks, trade dress, trade secrets, copyrights, unfair competition, dilution and false advertising.
PQE’s lawyers have extensive courtroom experience handling cases in federal and state courts, ranging from temporary injunction hearings to Markman hearings to jury and bench trials.
The firm’s IP experience covers a wide range of technologies, including welding technology, gas turbines, hair irons, down hole tools, medical payment systems, website designs, fugitive emissions detection; credit card processing, seismic data acquisition, oilfield chemicals, drilling methods, engineering plastics, catalysts, high speed cable modems, casket designs, bicycles, semiconductors, retractable needles, architectural drawings, coated stents, red light traffic monitoring, diapers and monoclonal antibodies.
PQE is uniquely positioned to be able to represent its client on a contingent fee or modified billing basis. This may include independent inventors and small companies who lack the resources to litigate or license their intellectual property against infringers, as well as large companies seeking a more cost effective way to enforce their intellectual property.
While PQE is flexible in negotiating contingent fee arrangements with the range of rates depending on the nature of the case, our standard agreement provides that the client will owe no attorneys’ fees unless a recovery is obtained. Regardless of any recovery, the client will be responsible for an agreed-upon portion (of court costs and litigation expenses as they are incurred.
PQE is also willing to represent clients based on a mixed hourly/partial contingent fee arrangement. While PQE is flexible in negotiating these modified billing arrangements with the range of fees and rates depending on the nature of the case, the client will owe no additional attorneys’ fees unless a recovery is obtained.
In patent infringement cases, typically the single most important issue is the interpretation of the patent’s claims, for instance, the numbered, one-sentence “paragraphs” at the end of the patent. Because the claims “stake out” the legal boundaries of the property of the invention upon which no one else may tread) it is important that the words of the claim are properly defined so that they reach to the legally permissible limits.
The process of defining the words in patent claims is called claim construction. In 1996, the case of Markman v. Westview Instruments, Inc., 52 F.3d 967, 976 & 979 (Fed. Cir. 1996) (en banc) aff’d, 517 U.S. 370 (1996) changed the landscape of patent infringement cases; now requiring the judge, instead of the jury, to interpret the words of the claims. As such, many courts require pre-trial briefs and hold hearings before trial, called Markman hearings, to assist the judges in performing these claim interpretations.
In many situations, the judge’s interpretations will determine the outcome of the case, or at the very least greatly improve or weaken the patent owner’s likely trial results.
PQE appreciates this dynamic and approaches patent litigations with an understanding of the importance of Judge’s claim construction.