In a decision that upends 27 years of law governing patent infringement cases, the justices sided with beverage flavoring company TC Heartland LLC in its legal battle with food and beverage company Kraft Heinz Co (KHC.O). The justices ruled 8-0 that patent suits can be filed only in courts located in the jurisdiction where the targeted company is incorporated.
Prior to this ruling, Defendants accused of infringing a Patent could be sued where ever the infringing product was sold.
As a result, many patent infringement lawsuits have been filed in Marshal, Texas. More than 40 percent of patent lawsuits are filed in a federal court in East Texas with a reputation for friendliness to plaintiffs. That curious fact was the backdrop for a Supreme Court argument on Monday over whether the court should halt what many big technology companies say is pernicious forum shopping in patent cases.
That has now changed. Many companies feel that they stand a better chance of getting lawsuits against them dismissed in their home town.