People invest in technology, data, art music etc. Proprietary rights to these investments are in the form of trade marks, trade secrets, copy rights and patents. The areas covered by these assets are rightfully belonging to the owners of the rights and it protects their investment in time, money, talent, etc. If this right is infringed by others it leads to litigation.
IP litigation process starts with a complaint by the plaintiff, asking for money damages or injunctions. The complaint is answered by the defendant and can include affirmative defense and also counter-claims. If a plaintiff can convince the court he can get a favorable injunction or motion to restrict the defendent’s further activities.
If the matter seems undisputed the court issues summary judgment and resolves the case. If denied, usually a series of motions follow that plunges both the opponent counsels to a lot of research, evidence collections and memoranda preparation.
Discovery is the period prior to the trial that mainly involves the collection of evidences and can be very extensive and time consuming. Finally during trial both parties put forward all their evidences and witnesses before jury or the judge. Judgment is given only after thorough investigation of all evidences. Even after judgment the loosing party has the right to go for an appeal at a higher court.
IP litigation being a lengthy and expensive process, it is usually advised to settle issues out of court if possible. In the US, jurisdiction falls between the federal and state court systems. Patents and copyright issues are handled by the federal court. As to which court will provide the jurisdiction, will depend on the issues and areas of the law concerned.