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Indirect Infringement Explained

Everyone knows that making, selling or using a patent-, trademark- or copyright-protected invention without the owner's permission is a direct infringement and is punishable by law. But something known as "indirect infringement" also is a potentially damaging legal issue.

Indirect infringement happens when a person is involved in conduct that ultimately leads to direct infringement. There are two types:

  • Contributory infringement: The doctrine of contributory infringement has roots in the 19th century and was initially developed to prevent the infringement of machines. It occurs when an unauthorized seller offers something less than the whole protected invention or product. An example is a seller using someone else's logo on their own products; posting access codes and serial numbers that allow others unlawful access to authorized copies of software; and making or selling a part that works only in a patented invention.
  • Induced infringement: This type of indirect infringement occurs when someone does not actively make, use or sell an infringing product, but hires, convinces or otherwise induces someone else to do so. Essentially, it's aiding and abetting of infringement activities.

If you believe that your copyright, trademark or patent is being infringed upon, whether directly or indirectly, you'll want to enlist the help of an experienced attorney. Daniel Law Offices can be reached at 866-37PATENT. Call to schedule a consultation in Orlando or Tampa.


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