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Idaho AG Wasden Moves to Intervene Against Alleged Patent Trolls

  • Idaho AG Lawrence Wasden has filed motions to intervene [Law360 paywall] in two related patent lawsuits. In so doing, AG Wasden seeks to defend the constitutionality of a 2014 Idaho statute, the Bad Faith Assertions of Patent Infringement Act (BFAPIA), which, among other things, requires patent-owning companies to put up a bond covering litigation costs if defendants can demonstrate a reasonable likelihood the suit was in bad faith.
  • The underlying lawsuits were brought by two related companies, Longhorn IP, LLC and Katana Silicon Technologies LLC, against Boise-based Micron Technology Inc. and its subsidiaries (collectively “Micron”). Katana filed a patent infringement suit against Micron, leading Micron to file a separate declaratory judgment action against Longhorn and demanded that Longhorn post a $15 million bond in accordance with the BFAPIA. In its response, Longhorn challenged that the BFAPIA is constitutionally preempted by federal patent law.
  • In its motion to intervene, the AG’s office asserted that it is in the public interest for it to intervene to defend the constitutionality of the BFAPIA, noting that the law is a consumer protection statute enacted to facilitate the efficient and prompt resolution of patent infringement claims, protect Idaho businesses from abusive and bad faith assertions of patent infringement and build Idaho’s economy. The AG’s office claims that Longhorn’s challenge places these important public protections at risk.