How can I ensure that reselling a product is not patent infringement? 1 Answers as of February 24, 2011If I purchase a retail product with a new use in mind with the intention to sell it as this new use, in my created packaging, would I be infringing on the manufacturers patent? If so, couldn't I contact the manufacturer to acquire permission to re-sell the product?
Michael M. Ahmadshahi | Michael M. Ahmadshahi, Ph.D., Esq.
Under the doctrine of patent exhaustion, a patent owner exhausts or loses its control over a first unrestricted sale of the patented item. Territoriality also affects the control over the first unrestricted sale. In other words, if the patent is a US patent and the sale is in the United States, then the patent owner has exhausted its patent rights and you may freely resell the item in the United States. However, this area of the law is somewhat complex and you should consult an attorney to review the patent and the sales restriction, if any, on the patented item before you embark on reselling the item.
Answer Applies to: California