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Jury Finds Wells Fargo Owes USAA $200 Million For Patent Infringement Of Mobile Check Depositing

Ildar Sagdejev
WikiCommons | http://bit.ly/2xW20Ub

Updated Nov. 7, 2019

An East Texas jury found Wells Fargo willingly infringed on mobile check deposit patents held by USAA.
A jury found unanimously in favor of the United Services Automobile Association Wednesday and ordered Wells Fargo to pay USAA $200 million.

Related | Texas Court May Decide Who Owns Mobile Check Deposit

Wells Fargo and more than 100 other banks were warned by USAA in 2017 they were infringing on the technology which USAA had developed for its military members.

Nathan McKinley is the vice president of corporate development at USAA, and he said in a press release that the verdict given on Wednesday is an acknowledgement of the company's value and innovation.

"We hope the industry acknowledges this verdict as further evidence of the enforceability of these patents," McKinley said. "Our goal is to be reasonably compensated for the benefits we believe the industry has received from using USAA's pioneering efforts."
Wells Fargo is the first bank that USAA has sued over the matter. USAA hasn't yet commented on whether it will sue other banks or if it is licensing the patents to other financial institutions. USAA and Mitek Systems, a company that licesnses remote deposit capture technology to banks, were embroiled in a 2012 lawsuit over who owned the technology. The two parties eventually reached a settlement.

"Wells Fargo strongly disagrees with this jury verdict and does not believe it has infringed on USAA's patent rights," said Peter Gilchrist, a communications leader with Wells Fargo. 

"We believe this is an industry issue involving numerous other banks that license remote mobile deposit technology from the same vendor, not USAA," the statement said, referring to Mitek Systems.

Wells Fargo said it is evaluating its options based on the verdict but the outcome will not impact its customers ability to deposit checks remotely.

Paul Flahive can be reached at Paul@tpr.org and on Twitter at @paulflahive.

Paul Flahive can be reached at Paul@tpr.org