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Alcon's $199 Million Settlement with J&J: A Patent Dispute Resolution

The medtech industry recently witnessed a significant settlement of a patent dispute. Alcon, a global leader in eye care, agreed to pay $199 million to J&J Surgical Vision, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, to resolve a lawsuit filed by the latter.

Table of Contents

  1. Background of the Dispute

  2. The Lawsuit

  3. The Settlement

  4. Impact on Alcon's Business

  5. Conclusion

Background of the Dispute

In June 2020, J&J Surgical Vision instituted a legal action against Alcon in the U.S. District Court in Delaware. The plaintiff charged Alcon with patent infringement related to their femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery devices, including the company's flagship LenSx device.

The Lawsuit

J&J Surgical Vision alleged that one or more claims in 12 of J&J's U.S. patents were infringed by Alcon's LenSx device. The LenSx laser system, which Alcon acquired from LenSx Lasers in 2010, is used in cataract procedures.

The Settlement

On February 12, Alcon announced the resolution of the lawsuit with a $199 million one-time payment to J&J Surgical Vision. As part of the settlement, both companies agreed to exchange cross-licenses of certain intellectual property. They also reached a consensus on other mutually agreed covenants and releases.

"The payment secures the patent rights for Alcon. It also resolves various worldwide intellectual property disputes relating to this matter." - Alcon

Impact on Alcon's Business

The settlement has multiple implications for Alcon. It not only brings an end to the ongoing legal dispute but also safeguards Alcon's patent rights for its LenSx device. The agreement also holds significance in resolving other intellectual property disputes in various parts of the world related to this issue.


In conclusion, the patent dispute between Alcon and J&J Surgical Vision illustrates the complexities that can arise in the medtech industry. It underscores the importance of patent rights and the lengths that corporations will go to protect their intellectual property.

This settlement, while costly for Alcon, ensures the company's continued growth and innovation in the field of eye care.


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