Choosing an East Texas Court Forum

by admin on January 11, 2011

in Attorneys

court forum patent trollThe Discovery Channels popular program “Myth busters” pride themselves on discovering whether or not a presupposition is correct. Well, I have a myth that needs some busting.

Is the eastern court district of Texas the best forum for patent infringement cases? Patent litigation has become more than protecting your intellectual property rights, it has become a form of business for some.

There is a genre of companies who carry the “patent troll” label based on the unethical business of obtaining patents from other businesses or firms in order to use them to collect financial rewards in patent infringement lawsuits.

Whether it’s one of these “patent troll” cases or your normal run-of-the-mill case, the plaintiff has the right to choose what “forum” or court location the case is brought to.

And throughout the patent litigation world, East Texas has become the place to go. But the question is, are the reasons why myth or reality? It has been explained that the major factors for East Texas becoming the location of choice is due to rocket docket (fast processing of patent infringement cases) and percentage of plaintiff victories.

But the truth is, in a recent investigation of patent litigation cases throughout the United States, the eastern district of Texas does not even rank in the top 5 of either one of those categories.

When it comes to “rocket docket” East Texas ranks in the bottom half and in victory percentage for plaintiffs it ranks 7th place. So is East Texas the ideal forum for patent infringement lawsuits?

When it comes to technical ranking, no it is not the best. But, just like the aging star athlete, reputation and experience can matter more, and I think that is what still makes East Texas the most popular forum.

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