Six key advantages of virtual marking
Virtual marking benefits patentees by separating the patent marking, packaging, manufacturing, and marketing processes.
Patentees use a single marking on all products within their portfolio. The benefits to patentees include substantial cost savings, centralized management of marking efforts and increased damages from maximized notice dates.
Six key advantages are:
1. Tooling & Labeling. Once implemented, patentees must no longer update casting, labels, etc. every time patents are added or removed – only to update the virtual marking registry.
2. Design Aesthetics. For products with space constraints or other aesthetic considerations, the traditional marking method has often limited the number of patents the patentee has been able to display on the product or packaging. Virtual marking allows the patentee to associated an unlimited number of patents to the virtual marking registry.
3. Applications & Patents Pending. Many patentees mark select products “patent pending” when the product release is many months or years before anticipated patent approval. A virtual marking on a product with pending applications, patentees can immediately update their registries on the day of publication of any newly approved patents and immediately give constructive notice.
4. Abandoned & Expired Patents. Just as manufacturers can sell products before pending patents issue, they also continue to sell products after patents expire or are abandoned. With virtual marking – the patentee must merely update the registry to reflect the patent’s changed status.
5. Litigated Patents. If a court invalidates a patent or a claim within the patent, it is unenforceable and no longer protects the product. Virtual marking enables the patentee to update its registry immediately upon release of an unfavorable decision – or to revert to a previous mark following a successful appeal.
6. Time & Cost Savings. The time for staff in engineering, marketing, manufacturing, etc. is rarely measured, yet can be costly for the patentee. Virtual marking simplifies the marking management process. A standard policy can be implemented to add the virtual marking to any patent-protected article, notify corporate counsel of the new product and have counsel update the virtual marking registry accordingly.