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'Place of Business' to Be New Patent Venue Battleground

Following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision limiting where patent suits can be filed, attorneys foresee heated battles in court over what constitutes a company’s “place of business” for venue purposes, as patent owners aim to blunt the ruling’s impact and keep cases in their favored districts.

Under the patent venue statute, suits can be filed where the defendant resides or where it has infringed and has a “regular and established place of business.” The Federal Circuit had held since 1990 that a company “resides” just about anywhere it makes sales, but the Supreme Court ruled May 22 that the term refers only to where it is incorporated.


"There was no litigation and no case law on it for 30 years, but now I think it will be a very important issue," said S. Gregory Herrman of Blank Rome LLP. "People are going to be looking for another venue besides the place of incorporation, and there is some uncertainty here for sure. It will give plaintiffs more options when trying to decide where to file a case."

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"Place of Business to Be New Patent Venue Battleground," by Ryan Davis was published in Law360 on May 26, 2017.