Hoping to fend off a potential patent suit, Good Technology Inc. confirmed Tuesday that it has filed suit against rival Research In Motion Ltd. (RIM) over a patent RIM holds on delivering wireless e-mail messages.

In an apparent peremptory move, the startup is asking a California court for a declaratory judgement stating that it does not infringe upon RIM’s Single Mailbox Integration patent. The patent relates to how information is directed from a host computer to RIM’s popular BlackBerry wireless devices.

Sunnyvale, California-based Good Technology employs similar technology in its wireless e-mail service, and is asking the court for protection against a patent infringement claim.

Although Good Technology executives declined to comment on the details of the suit, a report published in the Wall Street Journal Tuesday said that Good Technology thought there was a high probability that RIM would make a patent infringement claim.

“Research In Motion has been vocal about protecting its single mailbox patent,” Good Technology said in a statement.

According to the Journal, RIM sued Glenayre Technologies Inc. subsidiary Glenayre Electronics last year over the same patent and settled that suit last February. Under the settlement agreement, Glenayre accepted the validity of RIM’s patent and agreed to work with the company to integrate its services with BlackBerry devices.

No one from Waterloo, Ontario-based RIM was immediately available to comment on the matter.

RIM is online at http://www.rim.net/.