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Patent Litigation Risk Characterization

Patent Litigation Risk Characterization is a paper published in 2004 by David E. Martin and Peter A. Beling which shows that acquisition of patents increases your risk of being sued by other patent holders.

The authors highlight that defensive patent acquisition also increases risk of being the target of a patent infringement suit.

By extension, although not mentioned by the authors, the same is likely to be as true for formal publication (sometimes called "defensive publication"), which supports the argument that when a field is patentable, publishing information is made dangerous.


These results unequivocally demonstrate that possession of certain patent properties can increase the risk for a company or individual being involved in patent litigation. While touted as a justification for excessive patent filings, “defensive” patents that are obtained using the innovation of others or natural industry evolution appear to increase litigation risk to their holders in certain circumstances.

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