Can we be liable for patent infringement for using a patented product that we did not make or sell?


Yes. The United States Patent Act states that “whoever without authority makes, uses, offers to sell, or sells any patented invention, within the United States or imports into the United States any patented invention during the term of the patent therefor, infringes the patent[.]” Therefore, simply using a patented product without a license from the patent holder creates legal liability.

Further, inducing others to infringe a patent can create liability. For example, supplying a kit of components, with instructions and the intent that the end users use it for assembling an infringing product, constitutes a violation of the Patent Act.

If your company finds itself accused of patent infringement, it is important to properly analyze the situation and determine the most appropriate resolution. If you’ve received a cease and desist letter and want help evaluating your best course of action, please contact RPL to speak with an experienced lawyer.

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