Japan: スマートフォンの構成部分に係るデザイン特許の侵害

Last Updated: 29 December 2016
Article by Miki Goto

本件は、スマートフォンのディスプレイ部分の意匠につ いてデザイン特許(以下「本件デザイン特許」)を有する アップル社(Apple Inc.)が、サムスン電子社(Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.)の製造販売するスマートフォンが 本件デザイン特許を侵害するとして、損害賠償を求め た事案です。本件デザイン特許の一つである米国デザ イン特許第D604305 号では、下記に引用したようなグ ラフィカルユーザインタフェース部分の意匠が権利対 象としてクレームされています。

本件の米国連邦最高裁判所(以下「米最高裁」)にお ける争点は、上記のような、製品の一部分(上記の例 ではスマートフォンのグラフィカルユーザインタフェース 部分)の意匠を権利対象とするデザイン特許が侵害さ れた場合に、その損害賠償額をどのように計算するか という点にありました。より具体的には、連邦特許法 289 条は、デザイン特許を侵害する「製品」(article of manufacture)を販売等した者は、その利益総額の限 度で賠償責任を負うと定めているところ、この利益総額 の計算を、本件デザイン特許を侵害する意匠部分につ いて行うのか、当該意匠部分を含むスマートフォン製 品全体について行うのかが争われたものです。

原審の連邦巡回控訴裁判所(以下「CAFC」)は、連邦 特許法 289 条に基づく賠償額(侵害による利益総額) を計算する際の「製品」(article of manufacture)とは、 デザイン特許を侵害する意匠部分を含む最終製品全 体(本件ではスマートフォン製品全体)を指すと解釈 し、当該スマートフォンについての利益総額を基準に約 3 億 9900 万ドルの賠償を命じました。CAFC は、その 判断の理由として、一般の消費者がスマートフォンの部 品だけを別個に購入することはできず、そのような部品 は別個の「製品」を構成しないことなどを挙げました。

これに対して、米最高裁は、12 月 6 日、連邦特許法 289 条の「製品」(article of manufacture)は、消費者 に販売される最終製品とその部品の両方を含むと解 し、上記 CAFC の判決を破棄して差戻す判断を下しま した。米最高裁は、その判断を示すにあたり、辞書を参 照 し 、 「 article 」 は 単 に 「 特 定 の も の 」 を 意 味 し 、 「manufacture」は「原材料を手作り又は機械を用いて 人の使用に適したものに転換すること」を意味すること から、「article of manufacture」は単に「手作り又は機 械を用いて製作されるもの」を意味すると解されると述 べました。また、そのような解釈は、連邦特許法 171条 (a)(「製品」に係る新規、独創的かつ装飾的な意匠に デザイン特許が付与され得る旨を定めている)の解釈 とも整合すると述べました。そして、「製品」を消費者に 販売される最終製品のみを指すとした CAFC の解釈に ついては、狭きに失し、連邦特許法 289 条の文言と整 合しないと指摘しました。

他方で、本件の米最高裁判決は、具体的に本件にお いて、スマートフォンとその特定部品のいずれを「製品」 として賠償額を計算すべきかの点については判断を留 保しました(したがって本判決の意義は、連邦特許法 289 条の下で、最終製品を基準とした計算しか許容し なかった CAFC 判決を否定し、最終製品の一部である 意匠部分を基準とした計算も許容されるとした点にある といえます)。上記の点及びその判断基準(最終製品と その部品のいずれをベースに賠償額を計算するかを 決する基準)について、本件の差戻し後の CAFC の判 断の帰趨、さらには今後の関連する裁判例の動向が 注目されます。(後藤 未来)

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