Willamette Law Online

United States Supreme Court Certiorari Granted


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Limelight Networks, Inc. V Akamai Technologies, Inc.

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: January 10, 2014
Case #: 12-786
692 F.3d 1301
Full Text Opinion: http://www.cafc.uscourts.gov/images/stories/opinions-orders/09-1372-1380-1416-141710-1291%20errata.pdf

Patents: Whether 35 U.S.C. ยง271(b) allows a defendant to be held liable for patent infringement when no one committed a direct infringement.

Respondent owns a patent for efficient delivery of web content. Petitioner offers a similar service, but to not violate the patent held by Respondent, Petitioner instructs their costumers to conduct the last element of a patent breach, shielding Petitioner from fulfilling the elements of direct patent infringement. 

The Federal Circuit held that the Limelight can be held liable for inducing patent infringement under 35 U.S.C. §271(b), although no one has committed direct patent infringement. Petitioner argues that because no one has committed direct patent infringement under 35 U.S.C. §271(a), Respondent failed to bring a legally cognizable claim and the case should be dismissed. The Supreme Court granted certiorari to decide whether 35 U.S.C. §271(b) allows a defendant to be held liable for patent infringement when no one committed a direct infringement.