An Inventor’s Glossary

December 8, 2015

The patent debate is filled with articles, news and opinions that often include intricate, technical and potentially unfamiliar words. Save the Inventor thought it was about time to clear up all the confusion. With the inventor’s glossary, we will help you cut through the rhetoric and get to the facts surrounding the issue.

This week Save the Inventor has defined fee shifting and non-practicing entities.

Fee shifting


Fee shifting requires the loser in a legal matter to pay for the legal fees and costs of the prevailing party. Source

What this means for inventors

Legal fees in patent infringement lawsuits can be insurmountable, especially if a case involves a large corporation with infinite resources to fight and win a patent lawsuit in court. Unfortunately, when a case may be in favor of the patent holder, this risk can have independent inventors, entrepreneurs, or startups, thinking twice about filing a patent infringement lawsuit.

Non-Practicing Entities


A non-practicing entity (NPE) is anyone who holds a patent for a product or process, but has no intention of developing it; this could include inventors, universities, and R&D incubators. Source

What this means for inventors

Supporters of the current patent legislation are working to inhibit the rights of NPEs claiming they, “Hinder economic growth and contribute nothing to society.” However, this claim is widely inaccurate. The R&D that comes out of NPEs has been vital to the economic success and competitive edge of the United States. By taking away NPEs’ rights, we risk undercutting their ability to further invest in innovation, job creation, and economic growth.

For More Information on fee shifting:

For More Information on non-practicing entities:

Stay tuned for our next glossary post and in the meantime visit to learn more.