American Well Works Co. v. Layne & Bowler Co.
Annotate this Case
241 U.S. 257 (1916)
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U.S. Supreme Court
American Well Works Co. v. Layne & Bowler Co., 241 U.S. 257 (1916)
American Well Works Company v.
Layne & Bowler Company
Argued May 5, 1916
Decided May 22, 1916
241 U.S. 257
A suit for damages to business caused by a threat to sue under the patent law is not, in itself, a suit under the patent law, of which the state court cannot take jurisdiction.
Whether a wrong is committed by one making statements to effect that an article sold by another infringes the former's patent depends upon the law of the state where the act is done, and not upon the patent law of the United States, and, in this case, held that the state court had jurisdiction of a suit for libel or slander based on such statements.
The facts, which involve the jurisdiction of the district court, are stated in the opinion.