consent judgements

Federal Circuit Case Makes Enforcing Intellectual Property Rights Harder

A recent Federal Circuit case regarding the assignability of consent judgments in intellectual property cases may have significant effects on the practice of intellectual property law.  Recently, the Federal Circuit in Thatcher v. Kohl’s Department Stores, Inc., 397 F.3d 1370 (Fed. Cir. 2005), ruled that a consent injunction cannot be enforced by the plaintiff’s successor absent an express provision permitting assignment of the right to enforce.  If that ruling stands, and at least for now, both intellectual property litigators and transactional lawyers must take it into account in their work.