Troll Wars: Patent Lawsuits Multiplying Against CUs
The number of credit unions that have been hit by lawsuits alleging patent infringement keeps growing.
Among the victims are the $4.9 billion Citizens Equity First Credit Union of Peoria, Ill., the $30 million Cherokee County Federal Credit Union in Rusk, Texas, the $740 million United Heritage Credit Union in Austin, Texas, the $79 million South Bay Credit Union in Redondo Beach, Calif. and $12.1 million Cal Poly Federal Credit Union in Pomona, Calif.
The experts also said patent holders understand that credit unions are smaller than many banks, and license fees accordingly may be substantially lower.
“It’s a business decision. Some credit unions will pay $5,000 for a license just to make the matter go away quickly,” said Brian O. Dolan, a patent lawyer with Kaufman & Canoles in Newport News, Va.