Freedom to operate
In what cases is the intellectual property attorney forced to recommend a freedom to operate study?
A freedom to operate study can be executed on its own, independently from a patentability study or a prior art search, if you identify a potentially harmful prior or parallel right that could cause you to be guilty of infringement; or it may be executed after and complementary to a patentability study or a prior art search, as is often the case.
This is a study in which we examine the validity and scope of potentially obstructing intellectual property rights held by third parties. These patents may have been detected by us or by you, for instance during a prior art search.
To meticulously carry out these studies, we use our databases of patents and scientific, legal and economic literature and of the press, accessible on commercial servers, the Internet, etc.
Our intellectual property attorneys also use their knowledge and their practical experience of various offices, law and case-law in order to evaluate these various criteria in the technical domains that they are qualified in.
The final report of the freedom to operate study seeks to provide you with the necessary information for making a strategic decision regarding the intellectual property rights of third parties detected to be potentially obstructive.
Every study involves an exchange with you, particularly for debriefing you on the evaluation of the infringement risk and for planning ways to bypass difficulties. This exchange may particularly result in a new invention project.