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Infringement Litigation: ITC or District Court?

By Carl C. Charneski of Brinks Hofer Gilson & Lione

Carl C. Charneski, former administrative law judge at the U.S. ITC, recently joined the ITC practice at Brinks Hofer Gilson & Lione. His practice focuses on intellectual property and international trade, with an emphasis on Section 337 investigations and litigation before the U.S. district courts and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

Companies increasingly are turning to the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) to enforce their intellectual property rights and obtain relief from unfairly competing imports under Section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930. The ITC is a particularly popular venue for bringing patent infringement claims, although the ITC can also address copyright and trademark infringement. But potential claimants often have questions about the ITC, including those about its procedures and remedies. This article seeks to explain some of its key characteristics—and its potential as a venue.

Selecting a Forum: U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) vs. District Court

Q. Patentees sometimes have the option of bringing an infringement challenge in either the ITC or a district court. What strategies should patentees consider in choosing between the two?

A. Whether a company chooses to proceed at the ITC or district court generally depends on the remedy that a company seeks to resolve its infringement problem, and how quickly a compa...

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