The Patent Litigation Explosion
James E. Bessen
Boston University - School of Law; Research on Innovation
Michael J. Meurer
Boston University - School of Law
October 20, 2005
Boston Univ. School of Law Working Paper No. 05-18
This paper provides the first look at patent litigation hazards for public firms during the 80s and 90s. Consistent with our model, litigation is more likely when prospective defendants spend more on R&D, when prospective plaintiffs acquire more patents and when firms are larger and technologically close. Public firms face dramatically increased hazards of litigation as plaintiffs and even more rapidly increasing hazards as defendants, especially for small public firms. The increase cannot be explained by patenting rates, R&D, firm value or industry composition. Legal changes are the most likely explanation.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 41
Keywords: patent, litigation, settlement, licensing, property rights
JEL Classification: O31, O34, K41
Date posted: October 26, 2005
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