The epidemic of patent trolls and frivolous lawsuits has grown so pervasive and expensive that even some of technology’s biggest rivals are banding together to end this unsavory practice.
This week, Apple and Google are among the giant allies asking the U.S. Supreme Court to let them fight back against the companies that prey upon others by filing often absurd lawsuits that result in expensive legal fees.
It is believed that more than 100,000 companies were targeted by or threatened with infringement lawsuits in 2012 by entities that exist solely to extract royalty revenue.
The technology companies are leading a group of firms urging the court to make it easier to collect attorneys’ fees from patent-holders who lose infringement suits. In two cases to be argued this month, the justices for the first time will consider the rules that govern fee awards in patent litigation.
“Technology companies are seeing an onslaught of patent claims,” Charlene Morrow, a patent lawyer with Fenwick & West, tells Bloomberg. A favorable Supreme Court ruling “should make it less profitable to bring frivolous claims.”