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Exhaustion Doctrine

Exhaustion Doctrine

In United States patent law the exhaustion doctrine is the principle governing the extent to which patent rights lapse upon offering a patented product to another individual. In the language of patent exhaustion, the "first sale" concept refers to the idea that the patent holder may permissibly require actions of the purchaser only up to the point of title transfer.

Instances of this kind are generally observed in the commercial transactions of products involving intellectual property rights. The language of the exhaustion doctrine is used specifically in reference to patent rights. The term "first sale" is also applied to the area of copyright issues.

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