Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Georgia-Pacific Corp. v. United States Plywood Corp. case brief

Georgia-Pacific Corp. v. United States Plywood Corp. case brief summary
318 F.Supp. 1116 (1971)

The U.S. Court of Appeals remanded to the United States District Court and ruled that defendant corporation was liable to plaintiff corporation for patent infringement, with instructions to award damages.

Plaintiff corporation sued defendant rival corporation for patent infringement.


  • The court held plaintiff's patents invalid, and plaintiff appealed. 
  • A federal appellate court reversed, finding that defendant had failed to establish the invalidity of the patents and that infringement was indisputable, and it remanded for a damages award. 
  • The court awarded damages reasoning that, although plaintiff could not establish its lost profits, defendant's profits, or an established royalty, plaintiff could still receive an estimated reasonable royalty. 
  • The pertinent factors in estimating a reasonable royalty included the nature of plaintiff's patent property, the extent to which defendant took it, and its utility and commercial value (with the commercial success of the patented product being of greatest significance).

Plaintiff corporation was awarded damages based on a royalties estimate for the amount of patented product made and sold by defendant. The court made findings and conclusions as required by the federal rule.

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