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September 7, 2016

Enhanced Damages for Patent Infringement: Halo v. Pulse

By: David Neal

Enhanced damages in patent infringement suits in recent years have been limited due to the application of the Seagate test.  This test was developed as a standard used by courts to determine when to award enhanced damages.  The Supreme Court’s recent decision in Halo v. Pulse found the Seagate test to be unduly rigid and inconsistent with the actual statute regarding enhanced damages.  The Court restored the process of awarding enhanced damages to its intended scope.

We review the history of enhanced damages in patent infringement suits, including the introduction of the Seagate test.  Halo v. Pulse is reviewed and the Supreme Court’s reasoning behind eliminating the Seagate test is described.  We also discuss the impact the removal of the Seagate test has on patent infringement suits and potential patent infringers.

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