1/21/11 : Bonito Boats notes

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Case Summary

-Bonito Boats: No patent filed for the utilitarian or design aspects of the hull or manufacturing process (sprayed-fiberglass mold) by which the finished boats were produced.

-After 6 years of production, a Florida statute prohibited the use of a direct molding process to duplicate unpatented boat hulls, and the sale of them.

-Bonito Boats filed action against Thunder Craft for violation of the Florida statute.

-Conclusion: dismissed by Florida Court of Appeals and the Florida Supreme Court due to confliction with federal patent law via the Supremacy Clause; federal patent law rules higher than state law.

Notes and Facts of the case



-Does this ruling essentially nullify the Florida statute for the direct-mold manufacturing and sale of unpatented boat hulls?