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Advertiser group launches coverage against 'patent trolls'


The Association of National Advertisers said Tuesday it has launched a defense insurance program against patent assertion entities or “patent trolls” for ANA members.

Patent assertion entities — firms that launch patent claims against companies by claiming ownership over common advertising practices — have been on the rise. “Accordingly, marketers could be faced with a demand to pay large fees to a PAE that has not provided any direct services or technology to the marketer's advertising campaign, or, in many cases, contributed to any innovation,” ANA said in a statement.

Coverage benefits for the program include funds for patent infringement defense and litigation expenses. Limits of the insurance are $500,000 per claim per year and $1 million for a combination of all claims per year, according to the statement. Scottsdale Insurance Company will will underwrite the coverage.

“Patent trolls have been a growing issue for in the advertising industry in recent years, costing advertisers and agencies millions of dollars in fees in order to avoid paying even more to defend themselves in court. In order to offer a level of protection to members, we are introducing ANA Patent Infringement Defense Insurance,” said Bob Liodice, president and CEO of the ANA.

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