By Design: A breach of contract


After starting my own company in 1968, I was occasionally offered work as an expert witness in legal cases involving plastics. I always declined these projects until one of my customers was named in a patent litigation. The subject of this controversy was a childproof closure that I had helped design and develop.

While preparing for the trial I was interviewed by my customer's attorneys. They discovered that I knew why the product was designed as it was and how it differed from the prior art. I wasn't interested in this kind of work, but I agreed to testify because I believed my customer was being unjustly accused.

Much to my surprise I discovered that I enjoyed the work. The trial attorneys were intelligent, dynamic people who had the ability to motivate me to do my best work. I found the opposing experts to be technically competent. In too many instances they knew more about the related technology than I did. I found that being technologically challenged was intellectually stimulating at a stage in life when there weren't that many new challenges....
Read more