According to Fox News, as the White House hosts a ‘Made in America’ event and Trump battles with Biden for the ‘buy American’ mantle. Meanwhile, German courts are issuing baseless verdicts against US patents, allowing German companies to skip payments meant for US taxpayers. Germany’s judicial rulings mirror China’s current behavior towards American inventors.
A recent decision made by Germany’s Supreme Court raises the question of whether German courts are biased against non-German companies, particularly against American companies.
Enovsys is a US-based company, and even though many are unaware, its Location Services and Privacy technology are widely used by most mobile devices today. This technology was created by Enovsys’ founder Mundi Fomukong – an African American serial inventor from California – in the mid-’90s when phones were the size of a toaster.
Enovsys’ technology positions a call receiver within a wireless network and permits authorized third-party applications to access the position of a subscriber’s call receiver only after consent has been established. Everyone has seen it, and everyone uses it.
Patents for the invention were obtained in the US, Europe, Canada, China, Japan, and Singapore.
In an earlier US case, Sprint licensed Enovsys’ patent only after it was sued for violating a similar US patent and failed to reverse the jury’s verdict afterward in the US Court of Appeals.
Germany’s largest telecommunication company, Deutsche Telekom (DT), violated Enovsys’ patent, and Enovsys sued for patent infringement in Germany. After nine long years of litigation, the case reached the German Supreme Court for the second time. However, Germany’s Supreme Court eventually ruled that Enovsys’ patent in Germany was not enforceable, claiming that its patent was “obvious” and, therefore, not patentable. In reaching this decision, the Supreme Court created its own theory to advance an obviousness case in favor of one of the largest and most powerful companies in Germany, even though DT had not raised this defense at any point in the nine years of litigation.
This German case demonstrates the power wielded by large multi-national government-owned corporations, primarily when litigating against foreign entities on their home turf.
Recently, Deutsche Telekom expanded into the US with a 43 percent share of the telecommunications company T-Mobile.
US Congress has several bills pending that would help US inventors protect their rights, including the Inventor Rights Act, which would make it easier for inventors to enjoin the unauthorized use of their patent rights.
According to Enovsys executive and patent holder Mundi Fomukong, “Every time DT fell short in its pleadings, German courts consistently formulated a decision, divorced from the pleadings, to absolve DT of its responsibility… Even though a full reasoning from the Supreme Court is pending, the obviousness theory concocted during trial appears to be meritless and certainly a violation of due process. No property should be seized in this fashion.”