The escalation of patent lawsuit filings has been discussed many times in recent years, but the latest statistics surrounding the geographic concentration of that activity may still be surprising to some. According to an analysis conducted by Perkins Coie partner James Pistorino, more than 45 percent of U.S. patent cases were filed in either Delaware of the Eastern District of Texas so far in 2013.
Patent infringement filings have surged in the Eastern District of Texas for some time, but Delaware currently holds this year's top spots for cases, plaintiffs and defendants. According to Pistorino, the state has already eclipsed its 2012 filing rate as of September and is on track for an estimated 50 percent year-over-year increase in activity.
These anomalous results are actually quite logical when considering the correlation drawn by Boston University professor of law James Bessen. In a guest column written for The Washington Post, Bessen cited PricewaterhouseCoopers research suggesting that patent infringement plaintiffs have been significantly more successful at winning damages or enforcing injunctions via those two districts.
This trend was particularly evident in cases involving non-practicing entities. While such organizations typically win fewer than one quarter of their cases nationwide, they have enjoyed an approximate 40 percent success rate in Delaware and the Eastern District of Texas.