Tue. Mar 21st, 2023

If a defendant deliberately avoided learning of illegal acts, even though he was aware of the high probability of unlawful conduct, wilful blindness is demonstrated. The theory is that a person who intentionally ensures that he or she is not informed of the details of the wrongdoing, even if he suspects otherwise, is just as guilty as a person who is fully aware of the criminal activity. In response to these changes, potential infringers will need to adapt their methods of mitigating intellectual property risk. For companies intending to bring advanced products to market, thorough checks of prior patents are required. Motiva asserted that HTC`s policy was not to apply for patents on new products, and this purported directive was sufficient for the court to apply a standard of willful blindness to HTC`s knowledge. [71] Other companies with similar policies or practices will be required to review patents to protect themselves from potential infringement lawsuits. While this change in doctrine will most likely help protect patent holders, it places a new burden on potential infringers to ensure that they have not infringed patents. Last week, District Chief Justice Rodney Gilstrap issued a statement about the case in a pending lawsuit in the Eastern District of Texas (Motiva Patents LLC v. HTC Corporation), in which he wrote, “A well-founded claim for willful blindness is sufficient to make a claim for intentional harm.

Judge Gilstrap ruled that Motiva`s allegations of willful blindness (based on HTC`s policy directing employees NOT to apply for patents*) were sufficient to thwart HTC`s attempt to dismiss the intentional infringement claim. A famous example of rejection of such a defence occurred in In re Aimster Copyright Litigation,[2] in which defendants argued that file-sharing technology was designed in such a way that they had no way of monitoring the contents of outsourced files. They suggested that their inability to monitor users` activities meant that they could not contribute to users` copyright infringement. The court found that this was intentional blindness on the part of the defendant and was not a defence to an action for indirect infringement. Willful blindness or willful blindness is sometimes called ignorance of the law,[1][1]:761 Intentional ignorance, invented ignorance, deliberate avoidance, intentional ignorance, or Nelsonian knowledge. For example, in United States v. Bank of New England, N.A., the bank was convicted of numerous violations of the Currency Transaction Reporting Act. This legislation requires financial institutions to report customer transactions over $10,000.

However, the bank did not investigate a customer`s reportable transaction if the customer withdrew more than $10,000 using multiple separate cheques instead of a single cheque. The court found that the bank`s deliberate failure to inquire into the obligation to report these transactions was due to indifference to the law and therefore led to the finding of intentional blindness. The General Court held that Motiva had adequately raised both pleas in law. [61] Motiva successfully asserted that HTC had the knowledge to cause injury in the form of intentional blindness. [62] In addition, Motiva successfully concluded that HTC intended to infringe the infringement. [63] With respect to an indirect infringement, Motiva sufficiently argued that HTC had the necessary knowledge and that HTC`s product was not likely to have substantial non-infringing uses. [64] The extension of the doctrine of intentional blindness to intentional patent infringements is an extension of patent holder protection, but a threatening situation for potential infringers with a lenient national patent policy. Patent attorneys across the country will be watching closely if this decision is appealed. The outcome of this decision can have a major impact on patent litigation as well as on the role and needs of patent advisors. This decision is based on a 2010 Supreme Court decision: Global-Tech Appliances, Inc. v. SEB S.A., in which the court held that the “intentionally indiscriminate defendant is someone who acts intentionally to confirm a high probability of wrongdoing, and who can almost be said to have actually known the critical facts.” In 2015, the Federal Circuit in Suprema v.

ITC (Inquest No. 337-TA-720) that intentional blindness is determined by (1) a subjective belief of a high probability that a fact exists, and (2) conscious action to avoid experiencing that fact. In Suprema, willful blindness was found with less glaring facts than in global technology. Suprema`s facts were mainly that Suprema knew that Cross Match was a competitor, and that Suprema had researched and identified other Cross Match patents. The committee adopted the definition of intentional blindness, which was adopted by the United States. Supreme Court: “A lawyer is intentionally blind if he (1) subjectively believes that there is a substantial probability that a fact exists; and (2) acts consciously to prevent this fact from being known. Global-Tech Appliances, Inc. v. SEB S.A., 563 U.S. 754, 769 (2011). The committee deliberately distinguished wilful blindness from recklessness and negligence. Jury instruction for voluntary blindness is sometimes referred to as “ostrich instruction.” The sudden application of the doctrine of intentional blindness to intentional infringement will have a significant impact on the future of patent infringement proceedings.

This change will increase the frequency of lawsuits for intentional infringement and force companies to reconsider any internal policies suggesting avoiding patent examinations. The notion of willful blindness was upheld by the Supreme Court in the civil patent infringement case Global-Tech Appliances, Inc. v. SEB S.A. in 2011 and at the same time added some additional requirements for the application of the doctrine beyond those required in most federal district courts. was convicted of multiple violations of the Currency Transaction Reporting Act in United States v.

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