Troubled Patents Asserted Against Annuity Insurers

Law360, New York (July 30, 2008, 12:00 AM EDT) -- Despite serious weaknesses, recent patents issued to Lincoln National Life Insurance Company (U.S. 6,611,815; U.S. 7,089,201; and U.S. 7,376,608) are being asserted broadly against variable annuity insurers.

The three patents — along with two published applications (2007/0011086 and 2007/0033124) — offer several lessons. A careful examination of these patents shows how the patent community can better draft and examine patents for business process inventions, producing stronger patents in the future.

The Scale Of The Problem

The Lincoln National patents potentially affect a large and well-established market....
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