December 3, 2013

The Honorable John Boehner
United States House of Representatives

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Minority Leader
United States House of Representatives

Dear Speaker Boehner and Minority Leader Pelosi:

The broad-ranging group of undersigned industries and main street American businesses, responsible for tens of millions of U.S. jobs and hundreds of billions of dollars in economic activity, support passage of the Innovation Act of 2013 (H.R. 3309).  We believe this legislation aims to address the widespread abuses of the legal system by certain patent assertion entities, commonly referred to as patent trolls.

During this time of economic need, we believe enactment of H.R. 3309 is integral to curbing frivolous and costly patent litigation that currently hinders our ability to innovate, create jobs and promote positive economic growth.  Such frivolous lawsuits by patent trolls are an expensive distraction for many diverse, mainstream American industries, and the staggering growth of patent troll activity in recent years has caused our businesses to receive thousands of threatening demand letters and forced more than 7,000 lawsuits (a 400% increase since 2006), costing the U.S. economy more than $80 billion in 2011 alone.

Simply, patent trolls do not innovate, create jobs or promote economic growth.  Our businesses do.

To make clear, patent trolls no longer only threaten large technology companies.  In 2012, patent trolls filed more lawsuits against small and medium-sized non-tech businesses than against tech companies.  The many targets of this abuse, ranging from food providers, retail stores and media companies to financial institutions, hotels, gaming entertainment companies and other industries that drive the U.S. economy, have been left with no choice but to defend themselves through inefficient and burdensome processes, rarely avoiding costly litigation.  We believe American businesses must be able to defend against these consequential attacks more efficiently and less expensively.

While we recognize there may be no single solution that addresses all complexities surrounding our nation’s patent process, but one thing is clear: The Innovation Act of 2013 has significant bipartisan support on Capitol Hill and throughout many sectors, small and large, of the American business community.  This broad support and willingness to work together is a true testament to its importance and we urge House passage of H.R. 3309.


Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers

American Association of Advertising Agencies

American Gaming Association

American Hotel & Lodging Association

Coalition for Patent Fairness

Competitive Carriers Association

Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America

International Franchise Association

MPA – The Association of Magazine Media

National Association of Broadcasters

National Restaurant Association

Newspaper Association of America

Online Publishers Association, Inc.

Printing Industries of America

The R Street Institute

U.S. Travel Association

CC:         The Honorable Eric Cantor

The Honorable Steny Hoyer

The Honorable Kevin McCarthy

The Honorable Jim Clyburn

The Honorable Bob Goodlatte

The Honorable John Conyers

The Honorable John Kline

The Honorable George Miller

The Honorable Fred Upton

The Honorable Henry Waxman

The Honorable Jeb Hensarling

The Honorable Maxine Waters

The Honorable Sam Graves

The Honorable Nydia Velazquez

The Honorable Bill Shuster

The Honorable Nick Rahall

The Honorable Dave Camp

The Honorable Sandy Levin