Fueled by highly lucrative wins by contingency fee lawyers, a substantial market is developing for contingent fee representation in patent litigation. According to David L. Schwartz, who wrote an article,The Rise of Contingent Fee Representation in Patent Litigation, there have been several high profile contingent fee successes for lawyers in the past 10 years.
Take for instance the law firm Wiley Rein, which represented a small company, NTP Inc. in its patent infringement lawsuit against Research in Motion, the manufacturer of the Blackberry line of devices, Schwartz wrote in a recent blog, www.ipwatchdog.com. The lawsuit settled for $612.5 million in 2006 and the firm, that handled the matter on a contingency basis, received $200 million.
Another market push toward patent litigation contingency fee representation is the newer trend of having patent holders “sell and assign the patents and related causes of action to another entity. While historically there was not a significant amount of buying and selling of freestanding patents, there is substantial evidence that the market for patents has recently grown,” he stated.