What if my product is not the patented product but a starting product or a subpart of the product patented by a third party?

If your product is used by others to make a patented product, or if you are performing only part of a patented process to deliver to someone else who will perform the remaining steps of a patented process, you may still be committing infringement, even if your product or process does not have all of the features of the claims in the patent. Indeed, a person who offers or provides means to persons to offer an essential element of the patented invention, and who knows that these means are intended or at least suitable for exploitation of the invention, is considered to commit what is called “contributory infringement”. As this is subject to specific conditions and may vary from country to country, it is advisable to obtain information on this issue from a qualified European patent attorney.

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