News and Events

Brock argues patent ownership case in North Carolina Supreme Court

Walter E. Brock, Jr. argued (with Andrew P. Flynt and Patrick M. Aul on the brief) on May 18, in the North Carolina Supreme Court on a case drawing national attention from technology companies and inventors on the rights to patent ownership between the inventor and his employer.  At issue is whether an inventor can elect between his remedies to rescind his patent assignments or receive his bonuses when his employer was ordered to pay promised patent bonuses on 150 pending patents.  The firm successfully argued in the Court of Appeals that the inventor should have the right to elect between his remedies of patent bonuses or rescission of his patent assignments.  Also at issue was the inventor’s right to receive bonuses before certain patents actually issued because he was no longer employed.  The inventor was no longer employed because he was fired in retaliation for pursuing his Wage and Hour Act claim for his patent bonuses on previously filed and issued patents.