Protecting Software End-Users Against Patent Infringement

"Get the Vendor to indemnify - Before entering into any contract with a technology vendor, make sure there is a well-defined indemnity clause included. Often times products have an implied UCC warranty that the purchased product does not infringe on anything. However, explicitly stating the terms of the warranty should help remove any potential ambiguities.

Consider Patent Infringement Insurance - A patent infringement insurance policy can include a range of coverage from just legal costs to full indemnification for damages. However, insurance can be pricey. A policy's cost can range from $7 to $12 per $1,000 of coverage, but it can be worth the extra expense, especially given the "chain of commerce" in which liability can shift from one company to the next. For instance, many large companies require that their suppliers have a defense policy in place prior to doing business.

Join a Working Group or Defense Group - plaintiffs love to target end-users that are perceived as being too weak to defend themselves. 99% of the time, these types of targets settle quickly (usually at a cost between $40-300k, depending on the circumstances) to avoid escalating legal costs. By teaming up with others, your ability to actually fight back becomes much greater."

Read more in this post from Peter Zura.