The January 25, 2015 edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette featured an article in which Reed Smith partner Chris Healy commented on the dramatic rise in popularity of 3D printing technology and the legal issues that have come about – and may arise in the future – as a result of this trend. The article, “3D Printing Advances Open Up Frontier of Legal Fights,” highlights a number of legal areas in which potential disputes involving 3D printing may arise, including product liability, intellectual property and contracts. In fact, there have already been several instances of intellectual property disputes involving alleged “3D piracy,” in which one party attempts to commercially sell a 3D printed product possibly covered by a patent or copyright owned by another. Chris notes that jurisdictional issues may be complex for any 3D printing disputes that head to court – a 3D printed product may be conceived in one state, programmed in another, and printed in a third – and it will be the responsibility of the courts to decide where a particular dispute should be heard.
Home Industry Developments As 3D Printing Emerges, Legal Considerations and Challenges Arise