Bradley attorney Whitt Steineker was quoted in Law360 on the legal risks involved with pursuing cannabis patents. Cannabis companies are progressively seeking patents to protect their products, but there is risk involved in obtaining these rights since it's unclear how federal courts will treat patent suits over a product the U.S. government still deems illegal.
“The prospect of going to federal court acknowledging that you're doing something that may violate federal law is unappetizing to say the least," said Steineker.
Nevertheless, the uncertainty shouldn't necessarily deter cannabis businesses from applying for patents.
"I would definitely say that if they wanted to get a patent and they felt like they otherwise met the requirement for obtaining a patent, that they should feel comfortable seeking one," Steineker said. "They would just face some unique decisions when it came to protecting and enforcing their patent rights."
"A prudent attorney would make sure that in all things that he or she was in compliance with rules of professional conduct in the jurisdiction in which they're operating," Steineker added.
The original article, “4 Burning Legal Questions About Cannabis Patents” first appeared in Law360 on November 4, 2019. (login required)