SIIA Alerts Supreme Court to “Dreadful” Consequences of Patent Venue Shopping

SIIA Alerts Supreme Court to “Dreadful” Consequences of Patent Venue Shopping

Washington D.C. (February 6, 2017) – The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), the principal trade association for the software and digital content industries, today filed an amicus brief in TC Heartland vs. Kraft Foods, urging the United States Supreme Court to reverse a lower-court decision that permits non-practicing entities (NPEs) to forum shop.

“Patent suits by NPEs amount to a tax on innovation,” said Chris Mohr, Vice President for Intellectual Property and General Counsel at SIIA. “And a key reason that NPE’s have been so successful is their use of forum shopping, in which they bring their abusive lawsuits in the most favorable jurisdictions. Forty-four percent of all patent lawsuits were filed in a single federal district court located in rural Texas. That is not right, and it’s not an accident.”

The harm to innovation is real. As the brief explains: “Since 1990, patent plaintiffs have had their choice to sue in any of the country’s 94 district courts, without meaningful limit. The consequences have been dreadful. … Forum shopping is transforming patents from tools to encourage innovation into weapons with which to exact tribute from productive companies. Today, the reward for successful innovation often consists of patent infringement lawsuits tenuously connected to the accused products, and filed in courts that will all but guarantee a trial.”

SIIA’s brief can be found here.

About SIIA
SIIA is an umbrella association representing 800+ technology, data and media companies globally. Industry leaders work through SIIA’s divisions to address issues and challenges that impact their industry segments with the goal of driving innovation and growth for the industry and each member company. This is accomplished through in-person and online business development opportunities, peer networking, corporate education, intellectual property protection and government relations. For more information, visit siia.net.