States Target Bad Faith Over Patent Claims
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - Companies accused of abusing patent claims to seek fees and settlements are themselves becoming a target as states across the U.S. take aim against what some call "patent trolls."
Missouri lawmakers approved legislation this past week that would prohibit bad-faith assertions for patent infringement in demand letters and allow lawsuits from those who have been targeted. The state attorney general also could take action.
Laws are on the books in nine states, and legislation has been considered this year in about two dozen states.
Banks, restaurants, hotels and others have received claims of patent infringement for their use of technology such as scanners, Wi-Fi networks and ATMs. The American Intellectual Property Law Association has reported that average costs for litigating a patent can range from $650,000 up to $5 million.