Q. What is the legal process someone should take if they feel someone is violating their patent?
If someone has a patent that they feel a product is infringing upon,
the proper protocol is to have their patent lawyer send the company or the company's lawyer a cease and desist letter OR they could in fact bypass that step altogether and file suit. If the
company refuses to cease and desist the patent holder then has the right
to file an official lawsuit and take the company to court to let a
court decide if that person is infringing and then a settlement is
rendered. However this rarely happens due to the costliness of this
process (see link below).
What is NOT proper protocal is posting all over the internet that this one and
that one (and naming names) are stealing their intellectual property because then there
is a risk of defamation of character issues and it's just unprofessional.
FuzziBunz is free license and the company does not protect their intellectual
property rights and anyone has the right to make and sell pocket
diapers because FuzziBunz has never sued anyone so they won't sue me.
FuzziBunz fully intends on protecting our intellectual property
rights. We have been actively working behind the scenes
within the patent office for years. It has been a long process and one
that has required immense patience, but we feel the value of waiting it
out will be significant.
Q. Is there a potential fallout for retailers and customers to buy / sell possibly infringing products?
Customers? No. However in patent law, someone who sells a product
that has been sent a cease and desist order can also be sent a cease and
desist and also be sued by the company. That is not our desire however
but it is within patent rights to do so.
Q. Have you ever sued anyone and do you plan on it?
I am a peaceful person and a lawsuit is not something I want to be a
part of. They are costly and time consuming but unfortunately I see it being inevitable at some point. What I would rather see is for companies sign a license so that the legal system is being upheld and they can continue
business as normal. Licensing really is the smart way to go. The royalty is typically modest and the business can sleep at night knowing they will not be served with papers in the morning. PLUS it is just the right thing to do. I have done it with another product (similar but not exactly the same) and I have not died or been bankrupt by it - in fact it is a mutually beneficial relationship.
How much is that patent lawsuit going to cost you? Read here.