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State Sovereign Immunity for Patent Infringement Claims, Five Years After Florida Prepaid

In Florida Prepaid Postsecondary Education Expense Board v. College Savings Bank, the Supreme Court held that the states are immune under the Eleventh Amendment from patent infringement lawsuits in federal court. The Supreme Court reached this decision despite the fact that Congress passed legislation expressly abrogating the states’ immunity, despite the fact that the states (mostly through their universities) regularly obtain and enforce patents, and despite the fact that, unable to sue in federal court, patent owners would have no choice but to seek damages through unknown, uncertain, and potentially inconsistent procedures established by the states themselves....