FTC's Tough Message On Standard-Essential Patents

Law360, New York (December 6, 2012, 10:46 AM EST) -- The Federal Trade Commission announced on Dec. 3 a proposed consent decree in connection with Robert Bosch GmbH's acquisition of a division of SPX Corporation. This action is notable for several reasons:

The commission made important statements about its enforcement intentions regarding alleged breaches of fair, reasonable and nondiscriminatory ("FRAND") commitments for declared standard-essential patents (SEPs). Most importantly, the commission said, in appropriate circumstances, it will use its authority under Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act to challenge attempts by holders of FRAND-committed SEPs to obtain injunctions against implementers of standards.

The FTC is using Section 5, which prohibits...

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