Patented Method and Process

If (A) and (B) happen,
then (X) and (Y) always happen.

Competitor's Infringer (I)

If (A) and (B) happen,
then (X), (Y), and (Z) always happen.

I know that by first principles, we can conclude that the competitor does in fact infringe upon the first patent. This is because just by adding more elements to an invention does not bypass infringement. The competitor's version is equivalent but simply with more addons. If (Z) is removed, then we get back the original invention.

However, what if more elements are added to the independent clause instead:

Competitor's Infringer (II)

If (A), (B), and (C) happen,
then (X) and (Y) always happen.

In this case, if we remove the element (C) from the competitor's version, the outcome is undefined. The system may not even work.

If (C) is the sun rising on the day that (A) happened, then we can use Doctrine of Equivalence to prove that the competitor does in fact infringe because there is a 100% chance that the sun will rise everyday. This would render (C) to be a frivolous element?

However, let's suppose that (C) is a coin flip resulting in heads, then the outcome is random.


  1. Does adding a legitimate element (C), eg coin flip resulting in heads, to the dependent clause enable the Competitor to successfully bypass the patent?
  2. If the Competitor can prove that the act of removing the element (C) would either cause a different outcome or would simply render the system to not work, would that be enough to prove that there is no infringement?
  • A little unclear - the formatting you are using requires horizontal scrolling to see. More importantly there might two systems in which when A and B happen the system produces an output C. The two systems might use entirely different mechanisms to achieve this result. If one is patented the other may have same result but done in a non-infringing manner. Maybe you need a better example.
    – George White
    Commented Apr 26 at 21:11
  • I am not a lawyer so I hesitate to answer questions regarding claims. That said I'd guess infringer (II) infringes just as infringer (I) does. After all (C) could be anything innocuous such as "air is present" that doesn't really do anything.
    – Eric S
    Commented Apr 26 at 22:10
  • (C) could be an unfair coin toss that is false with probability 1/2^1000 or true otherwise. then you have for all practical purposes the original invention but it might not be literally infringing. part of the problem is the "always" profanity. it ought to be possible to write the process claim so that simply doing X and Y in response to A and B even just in one instance infringes, irrespective of instances where A and B are true but there is no response
    – bhuff36
    Commented Apr 27 at 15:05


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