Play video

Indirect Patent Infringement

Learn about secondary liability for patent infringement, including contributory infringement and inducement.


Individuals and entities may be vicariously liable for another’s direct infringement. The two theories for indirect liability for patent infringement are inducement and contributory infringement.

Both theories borrow from tort law and require proof of another’s underlying direct infringement. Unlike theories of secondary liability for copyright and trademark infringement, indirect patent infringement is defined by statute. Inducement is defined in section 271(b) [35 U.S.C. §...