Puritan Defeats Copan's Swedish Lawsuit
June 15, 2020 | GUILFORD, ME (U.S.) – Puritan Medical Products Co., LLC—On June 5, 2020, Puritan notched another win in the global patent disputes against Copan over flocked swabs. This time the win was in Sweden, where the Swedish Patent and Market Court issued a unanimous verdict finding that Puritan’s PurFlock Ultra swabs sold by distributor Svenska LABFAB did not infringe any of the claims of Copan’s European Patent (EP 1 608 268 B2). Copan must now reimburse legal fees.
Copan announced the Swedish lawsuit to much fanfare during a 2019 trade show in Amsterdam, even distributing press releases to attendees. Copan claimed “that Svenska LABFAB has committed willful infringement of the patent covering COPAN’s core flocked swab technology.” As the trial date approached, however, it became clear that Copan was not interested in actually getting a ruling in Sweden. Despite saying that “COPAN cannot tolerate infringements of its intellectual property rights,” Copan kept asking for delays and extensions. Svenska LABFAB and Puritan opposed the delays and asked the court for a final verdict on the merits. The Swedish court ruled that Puritan’s PurFlock Ultra swabs did not infringe Copan’s European Patent for multiple, redundant reasons. This verdict confirms Puritan’s 2014 assertion that the PurFlock Ultra and HydraFlock swabs do not violate Copan’s European Patent.
Notably, the Swedish court did not consider the issue of invalidity, and gave Svenska LABFAB and Puritan a complete win based non-infringement alone. Other courts in Germany previously ruled that Copan’s three utility models based on the same Copan European Patent were invalid, and awarded Puritan its fees.
With an 0-4 record (three losses in Germany and now one in Sweden), Copan has a few days to appeal the Swedish decision. Meanwhile, the U.S. litigation in Maine is currently paused following the exchange of expert reports (Copan is using the same expert in the U.S. as it used in the failed Swedish lawsuit).