The Court's 2006 Ebay decision influenced the availability of injunctive relief in patent cases in important ways. While most empirical assessments of the Ebay decision focus on trial court activity, a recent paper by Ryan Holte (So. Ill.) and Christopher Seaman (W&L), Patent Injunctions on Appeal: An Empirical Study of the Federal Circuit's Application of Ebay, assesses 7.5 years of post-Ebay decisions by the Federal Circuit. An excerpted abstract follows.
"This article represents the first comprehensive empirical study of permanent injunction decisions by the Federal Circuit following eBay. Through an original dataset of appeals in nearly 200 patent cases — representing all cases involving contested permanent injunction decisions for a 7½ year period after eBay — we assess the impact of the Federal Circuit on the availability of permanent injunctions. The findings from this study indicate that the Federal Circuit is generally more favorable to prevailing patentees regarding permanent injunctive relief than the district courts following eBay. District courts that grant an injunction after a finding of liability are highly likely to be affirmed on appeal, whereas district courts that deny an injunction have a statistically significant lower affirmance rate. This suggests the Federal Circuit is generally inclined toward a property rule rather than a liability rule as a remedy against future patent infringement. It also appears to lend support to claims by scholars and others that the Federal Circuit, as a specialized court with a large number of patent cases, is more pro-patentee than the generalist district courts. Finally, some implications of this and other empirical findings from the study are considered."