Minnesota Draws Accolades for Settlement With 'Troll'

August 21, 2013

The National Law Journal quoted Fenwick patent litigation associate Bryan Kohm regarding a first-in-the-nation settlement, in which the attorney general of Minnesota booted a Texas patent troll from the state.

“This troll systematically was avoiding the court system and using its mechanism to shake down companies throughout the country,” Kohm said. “It’s important for the A.G. in various states to step in and prevent this sort of abuse of the legal system.”

Waco-based MPHJ Technology Investments agreed to stop threatening lawsuits against businesses in the state that use typical office equipment to scan documents to e-mail. The company had demanded license fees of $1,000 to $1,200 per employee.

In addition to being barred from sending licensing or infringement inquiry letters in Minnesota without the attorney general’s permission, MPHJ cannot assign its patents to any party unless that party agrees to the settlement terms. The settlement also included a $50,000 civil penalty.