United States: California

Firms: enforcement and litigation

  • Cooley LLP
  • Fenwick & West LLP
  • Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Knobbe Martens
  • Latham & Watkins LLP
  • Hanson Bridgett LLP
  • O’Melveny & Myers LLP
  • Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP
  • Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP
  • Sideman & Bancroft LLP 
  • Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  • Acuminis LLP
  • Crowell & Moring LLP
  • Donahue Fitzgerald LLP
  • Fish & Richardson
  • Greenberg Traurig LLP
  • Irell & Manella LLP
  • Loeb & Loeb LLP
  • Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP
  • Reed Smith LLP
  • Seyfarth Shaw LLP 
  • Tucker Ellis LLP 
  • Winston & Strawn LLP 

Firms: prosecution and strategy

  • Fenwick & West LLP
  • Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Knobbe Martens
  • Cooley LLP
  • Greenberg Traurig LLP
  • Hanson Bridgett LLP
  • Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP
  • Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • Seyfarth Shaw LLP 
  • Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP
  • Sideman & Bancroft LLP 
  • Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  • Donahue Fitzgerald LLP
  • Duane Morris LLP
  • Fish & Richardson
  • IPLA
  • Latham & Watkins LLP
  • Loeb & Loeb LLP
  • McDermott Will & Emery
  • Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP
  • O’Melveny & Myers LLP
  • Pranger Law PC 
  • Reed Smith LLP
  • Winston & Strawn LLP 

Acuminis LLP

A dynamic IP litigation and commercialisation boutique, Acuminis takes on the toughest battles and puts pedal to metal to get results. Alongside trial skill and toughness, a key selling point is flexibility on fee arrangements: it gives clients options including fee caps, fixed fees, contingency fees and combinations thereof, incentivising both increased speed and quality lawyering. Delivering on both in a resounding way, Christian Liedtke takes the helm. Unafraid to pursue outside-the-box strategies, he is tactically smart, as his superb record bears out. He has niche specialisms in areas such as parallel trade as well as fine-grained international knowledge; he is also fluent in German and has expanded his firm’s prosecution activities for well-known German brands.

Cooley LLP

Cooley’s equal ability to manage portfolios globally and win hotly contested, high-stakes trademark litigations has not gone unnoticed: when brand owners have outgrown their existing counsel and are seeking a bigger, more sophisticated platform to help them expand their geographical footprint, they seek it out. The firm has a constellation of stars on the West Coast who garner vocal praise from those they represent. Founding partner of the trademark and advertising group Anne Peck is “a voice of calm even when situations are tense and a creative thinker with solutions for the knottiest trademark issues”. One source comments: “When I deal with my internal clients, I ask myself, ‘What would Anne say?’” John Crittenden is also a statesman of the practice, with “a wealth of experience in trademark litigation and prosecution”. “John is a walking encyclopaedia of case law and a quick thinker on his feet, with the legal authority to back up his positions. His abilities as a mediator are very helpful when dealing with acrimonious parties – he can bring people to the table when others can’t.” Fellow litigator Bobby Ghajar “dominates the strategic issues in his cases from top to bottom” and is a “superb advocate who understands trademark law and civil procedure at the most profound level”. “He sees the end game and every decision he makes drives toward the right result.” “High-calibre trial lawyer” Angela Dunning has an “even-keeled demeanour which comes off well when presenting in court”. She is also a “great writer and strategist who leaves no stone unturned in developing her positions”. John Paul Oleksiuk litigates, prosecutes and counsels with aplomb, giving “practical and business-focused advice at all times”: “He doesn’t simply take and process instructions, but seeks to understand the commercial issues at play. He makes sure you spend your resources wisely, both offensively and defensively, and his billable hours are much more conservatively applied than by lawyers at other firms.” He and Dunning are representing 23andMe in a federal trademark dispute with Ancestry.com over rights to use the word ‘ancestry’ – a good example of the sort of classic competitor-on-competitor trademark spat for which Cooley is regularly enlisted.

Crowell & Moring LLP

Crowell & Moring’s practitioners understand the function of brand assets in commercial ecosystems, having practised trademark law over many decades, during which companies have become much more aggressive in enforcing their rights. Kent Goss has taken the lead on important trademark infringement cases throughout his 30-year career and gone the distance at trial on numerous occasions. He is well placed to handle disputes in which different legal issues intersect: he is currently defending Lycoming Engines in a case involving the interplay of trademark law and Federal Aviation Authority rules and regulations. With him on this is Valerie Goo, with whom he partners often and dynamically. He modestly insists that she is smarter than him and a better lawyer; but the truth is that both are excellent at what they do – litigating with commercial purpose and helping clients to overcome difficult challenges.

Donahue Fitzgerald LLP

A long-established resource for innovative companies, Donahue Fitzgerald provides precision-guided trademark advice that advances business objectives. The focus is squarely on the client, so if avoiding a conflict makes more sense than pursuing it, for example, this is the path down which matters are navigated. Each member of the team brings something special to the table. Anne Hiaring Hocking stands out for her global filing and enforcement expertise. Resident franchising expert Dawn Newton has a sophisticated understanding of the retail and restaurant sectors; on broader trademark matters, too, she is great at anticipating future issues and nipping them in the bud before they bother her clients. She co-chairs the group with Daniel Schacht, whose prosecution, litigation and licensing services are appreciated by music artists and entertainment and technology companies. With a talent for presenting the most nuanced concepts of IP law in crystal-clear way, he is also a great listener: he takes on board complex information and thinks it through deeply before giving an opinion.

Duane Morris LLP

Duane Morris is a force to be reckoned with in the trademark arena – it manages 20,000-plus trademarks globally; has more than 40 specialised attorneys on deck; and regularly assumes frontline roles on important litigations. Recommended by the WTR 1000 in California for the first time this year, its profile on the West Coast is increasing thanks to the efforts of Michelle Hon Donovan and Mark Steiner. Donovan has prosecution, litigation and transactional on lock in a reassuringly complete practice. Sources call her an “intelligent, astute attorney with a no-nonsense approach, by which she gets to the heart of matters quickly and deals with them pragmatically and cost-efficiently”. Steiner does it all in the trademark and copyright space, too, showcasing a keen grasp of emerging brand issues and business matters. Duane Morris has added many new attorneys to the group in recent past –  among them Jennifer Lantz, who made the switch from Haynes and Boone in March 2020. Posting up in Silicon Valley, she gives the firm’s innovative client base a persuasive option for trademark protection, enforcement and licensing tasks.

Fenwick & West LLP

One of just three firms to be gold-ranked in California for prosecution and litigation, Fenwick & West maintains a superlative 360-degree trademark practice. A favourite of some of the largest technology companies in the world – as well as some of the most exciting start-ups – its service is as cutting edge as those it represents: it has pioneered new defences to trademark claims; developed unique software to enhance efficiency; and cut costs and shown leadership with respect to diversity and inclusion both within and outside the organisation. No other firm has as many gold-tier individual representatives, which is testament to its strength in depth and quality. On the prosecution and strategy side, Sally Abel, Karen Webb and Connie Ellerbach are all first class. As founder of the trademark group, Abel set in motion everything it has become today. She is a global trademark law doyenne with rare gifts when it comes to building value into portfolios. Webb – who is also top-rated on the enforcement and litigation side – pays attention to business and gives tailored commercial advice, not cookie-cutter responses. Ellerbach has forged great relationships with start-ups and others who appreciate her ability to quickly identify and creatively solve problems; for thorny clearance issues or strategies to get around blocking registrations, she’s the number-one choice. Their counterparts on the litigation side are Jedediah Wakefield and Andrew Bridges. Chairing the litigation group, Wakefield is hailed as a “consummate professional who knows how to get clients across the finish line through trial”. Bridges is a leading copyright and trademark litigator with more than 30 years in the game and a pitch-perfect sense of business risk. “Fantastic advocate and devastatingly effective writer” Eric Ball is another safe pair of hands for the sorts of cases that can stretch even the most talented lawyers. The firm has a new face in the WTR 1000 this year in Kathryn Fritz, who has just completed a lengthy stint as managing partner and is now intensifying her focus on complex litigation.

Fish & Richardson

“Fish & Richardson can provide an impressively wide range of IP services – it has an incredible depth of experience and can always put someone forward with the particular expertise you need for your case. Its lawyers are extremely collaborative, unflappable and a pleasure to work with.” Flying the firm’s flag high in California is Silicon Valley-based Lisa Greenwald-Swire. Popular among peers – who admire the “astuteness with which she handles sensitive cases” – she also gets great reviews from clients, which she accompanies from the point of name clearance through prosecution, office actions, oppositions, registration and enforcement. “Lisa is an experienced attorney whose knowledge brings an immediate advantage when strategising on IP matters globally. She understands her clients from a commercial perspective and is highly responsive and always available.”

Greenberg Traurig LLP

Greenberg Traurig’s IP and trademark lawyers play a vital strategic role for clients: by staying out in front of emerging issues and technologies, they manage brands with both present and future challenges and opportunities in mind, which adds tremendous value. Chair of the global trademark and brand management group Susan Heller is extremely thoughtful in this way and knows the direction the wind is blowing. On top of the amazing global work she does protecting the rights and enhancing the portfolios of clients, she also plays an important role with respect to diversity and inclusivity – issues she feels passionately about; she makes sure the firm is walking the walk, not just talking the talk. The firm’s other rainmakers in Southern California make a crucial contribution to what is one of the largest and most capable trademark teams in the United States. “Innovative, tenacious and reliable”, Candice Kim is a future leader of the practice whose varied workload is testament to impressive versatility: she has recently handled transactions for Bank of America; brought a trademark infringement suit for Kluft against a competitor; and successfully represented popular brand Skip Hop in a cancellation action. Dividing his time between Los Angeles and Silicon Valley, global IP and technology group co-chair Ian Ballon demonstrates a mastery of e-commerce and internet-related trademark matters, and has consistently proved his mettle as a litigator.

Hanson Bridgett LLP

Highly reputed for its “outstanding-quality trademark work”, Hanson Bridgett continues to deliver on the money. The team recognises the value of diverse perspectives and forms close partnerships with in-house counsel that lead to optimal prosecution and enforcement results. It is easy for lawyers to say “No”, but that’s not what the folks here like to do: they have a can-do attitude and the tactical nous and experience to make things happen. This sort of thinking is embodied by Raffi Zerounian: “He is a very thoughtful counsel with an awe-inspiring knowledge of the law, but he also has a very practical mind. He has the attitude of an in-house lawyer and always keeps clients’ business interests at heart.” As a protean brands lawyer, Zerounian is cut from the same cloth as Noel Cook – a veteran of the practice who is also endorsed for his pragmatism. Cook and Garner Weng perform brilliantly in an outside general counsel-type role, though each has his own special affinity – Cook for enforcement and Weng for IP and particularly tech-heavy licensing and transactions.

IPLA

A new entrant in the WTR 1000 this year, minority-owned boutique IPLA is distinguished by its laser focus on trademark law, proactivity, responsiveness, efficiency and unerring ability to deliver quality, cost-effective outcomes. John Kim has set the firm up to be incredibly nimble, which is a blessing for brand owners in an uncertain world. Under instruction around the globe, he protects clients to the hilt while keeping a watchful eye on infringement issues and licensing opportunities.

Irell & Manella LLP

One of the most sought-after litigation outfits in the world, Irell & Manella exhibits a rare faculty for high-stakes IP cases. Jane Shay Wald captains the trademark practice group and is a safe pair of hands for even the most fraught brands disputes; she has litigated at the Supreme Court and has a level of experience that instils confidence. She also shines as a strategic counsellor.

Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP

“When it comes to trademarks, Kilpatrick Townsend is top-notch in every respect. It has an amazing team of super-smart lawyers with a terrific combination of prosecution and litigation expertise.” This is an accurate summation of the firm, which runs one of the largest dedicated trademark and copyright practices in the United States. Microcosmic of the wider organisation, the West Coast contingent covers all bases for brand owners, though its proficiency in litigation is perhaps worthy of special mention. There’s no shortage of options for those seeking lead counsel representation – any one of Larry McFarland, Dennis Wilson, Joseph Petersen, Gregory Gilchrist and Ryan Bricker can step into the breach. McFarland does great things for a leading social media brand as a strategic litigator and counsellor; as does Wilson, who is a beacon for many big-name media and entertainment entities. A pathfinder for Silicon Valley innovators when conflicts loom, Petersen is a gifted thinker on trademark and copyright issues. Gilchrist takes the reins of the San Francisco office, where he sets the pace in IP and antitrust litigation; consumer products brands turn to him to coordinate swift and effective global enforcement. Working alongside Gilchrist in support of a famous clothing company, Bricker also has effective strategies for keeping infringers at bay, which he can put into near-immediate play anywhere in the world. On the prosecution and portfolio management side, the firm has a star in San Francisco in Anthony Malutta, who provides gold-standard guidance to technology, retail and food businesses. He co-leads the trademark and copyright team and has been instrumental in its ascent to absolute powerhouse status. There’s one other name to mention – and it’s an important one in the context of the Kilpatrick Townsend’s commercial IP offering: Gwen Peterson has negotiated and closed just about every type of IP-based contractual agreement you can think of.

Knobbe Martens

Rich in technology and brands know-how, Knobbe Martens is one of the country’s elite all-round IP boutiques. A deep trademark bench is one of its outstanding features: the firm has a total of nine individuals ranked in the WTR 1000 California chapter – more than any of its competitors. Collectively, they meet and exceed the demands of emerging companies and Fortune 100s alike – a point which also holds true at an individual level in many cases, given the versatility on display from the likes of Susan Natland and Catherine Holland. Co-chair of the trademark and brand protection group Natland has seen and done so much in the practice that she always has a strategy or solution at the ready; her niche insight in data privacy and security is a boon to many of her clients. Holland is appreciated for her intellectual processing power and gets to grips with difficult problems fast; people call her up when they’re left scratching their heads. Stopping short of litigation, but doing everything up to and including hardcore enforcement, are Stacey Halpern, Jeffrey Van Hoosear, Jonathan Hyman and Diane Reed. Halpern has a deft touch when it comes to managing global portfolio portfolios; Van Hoosear has an intuitive grasp of the branding challenges that emerge in different industries, including fashion, food and sports; Hyman enjoys transactional work, but applies his business-oriented mind to prosecution and counselling; “meticulous lawyer” Reed also excels on the commercial aspects of intellectual property and undertakes extensive licensing and due diligence activities. Lynda Zadra-Symes, Michael Friedland and Ali Razai form the backbone of the litigation practice: all three are seasoned and winning advocates through all phases of litigation, with the dexterity to handle cases associated with all categories of IP rights.

Latham & Watkins LLP

Trial expertise is one of the special ingredients of Latham & Watkins’s stand-out trademark practice: its elite team is ready, willing and able to take lead roles on cases that advance the branding landscape and affect players beyond the immediate parties. Applying equal rigour and creative thinking on the prosecution and strategy side, too, the set manages portfolios globally for a slew of household-name clients. The talisman of the practice is Perry Viscounty, an “extremely charismatic trial lawyer who juries really warm to”. Major matters he currently has on the go include representing Allergan and subsidiary Zeltiq in a sprawling enforcement effort to safeguard Zeltiq’s rights in the CoolSculpting brand – a logistically demanding task on which Latham’s cross-disciplinary nous and resources are proving difference making. Viscounty runs an “incredible team” and benefits in this endeavour from the leadership also brought to the table by IP litigation group global vice chair Jennifer Barry. Her energy and passion for trademark law make her a client favourite; and the results she gets help too. Funko of POP! collectibles fame is one well-known name for which she has a great hit rate.

Loeb & Loeb LLP

Loeb & Loeb’s IP lawyers never view company connections as transactional and invest time and care in building long-term partnerships. This yields many benefits – not least of which is the ability to anticipate issues and deal with them before problems arise. Instilling this relational approach is Melanie Howard, who chairs the IP protection practice. For clients, she is an abundant source of strategic, commercially informed advice that facilitates business growth. She has a nuanced understanding of the retail and food industries, among others, and provides a wide-ranging contentious and non-contentious service to Hudson’s Bay Company/Saks Fifth Avenue and Dole Packaged Foods. Down the hall in the Los Angeles office, gold-rated strategist David Grace is another pillar of the practice and the firm’s best-known brands expert, with a huge following in the entertainment space. On the enforcement side, he does a “great job finding instances of infringement, presenting options, making recommendations and implementing action plans”, and is appreciated for his practical and proactive mindset. In litigation, he brings tenacity to cases; as does David Grossman, a commercial and IP advocate with prominent clients such as the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

McDermott Will & Emery

Recognised globally as a “top-tier firm”, McDermott Will & Emery is a repository of unshakeable trust for multinational rights holders. Its facility for protecting and enforcing trademark rights across borders without limit has new clients knocking on its door daily; none are left standing, as its lawyers have the expertise and the resources to take care of whatever’s needed. The key contacts on the West Coast are Orange County-based Sarah Bro and Los Angeles resident Jorge Arciniega. Bro maintains a broad practice, but has special weapons and tactics for handling financial technology-related brand matters and domain name issues. She is an integral part of a McDermott team that looks after Accenture’s global trademark portfolio. Arciniega stands out for his dexterity overcoming prosecution and rights management obstacles in many locales, including jurisdictions in Latin America and Asia.

Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP

“Morgan Lewis is a great and robust full-service outfit which provides an excellent service across all practice areas. Its lawyers are effective, thoughtful and diverse.” Intellectual property is a central pillar at the firm, which can be seen in the comprehensiveness of its offering on both the patent and trademark sides; not just focused on rights procurement, big-ticket litigation or high-value transactions, it does it all and does it well. Enhancing its effectiveness as a one-stop shop for brands are its leading lights in California Carla Oakley, Rochelle Alpert and Sharon Smith, all of whom work across the trademark lifecycle. Oakley oversees global protection efforts with aplomb and is an authority on advertising issues. Alpert has a refined theoretical and contemporary understanding of trademark law, which she generously shares through speaking and publishing activities. Smith thrives in the cut and thrust of litigation and recently secured a $2.95 million jury verdict for Gavrieli Brands in a design patent and trade dress infringement competitor case against Soto Massini; for the win, she linked up with polished patent litigator Michael Lyons, reflecting the benefit of the firm’s well-roundedness in intellectual property and collaborative ethos.

O’Melveny & Myers LLP

For movers and shakers in the technology sector, O’Melveny is a premier destination for trademark services, including prosecution and litigation. A magnet for many, David Eberhart is steeped in technology issues and understands clients’ business drivers like few other attorneys. As a result, he has a flair for negotiating favourable commercial resolutions in disputes scenarios, but also has the backing of tried-and-tested trial skills. He is currently handling an important trademark infringement and false advertising case for Elasticsearch against Amazon.com – a company he is certainly familiar with going up against. Scott Pink also has that laser business perspective, having worked as a media company general counsel. He draws on a deep well of trademark, advertising, marketing and privacy insight to give holistic branding support to a vast number of technology, media, entertainment and consumer products companies.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP

Constant involvement in major brand-related litigation positions Orrick at the leading edge of trademark law. It is distinguished by the level of specialisation on its trial team, which is the advantage of having people such as Annette Hurst and Diana Rutowski in the fold. Hurst – the lead member of the firm’s board of directors – is an IP heavyweight who has fought and won plenty of high-exposure or legally novel cases, many centred on the technology industry. She is currently representing Williams-Sonoma in a hard-fought suit again Amazon, with ramifications for brand owners in the retail and consumer goods spaces. With her on this, Rutowski sees complex cases from all angles, thanks to the creative problem-solving experience she has gained from her diverse litigation, strategic counselling and portfolio practice. Orrick isn’t just in this for the fight, though: it also conducts prosecution with brio, making good use of its international presence to do so globally. Names to note for brand protection include Beth Goldman and WTR 1000 newcomer Betsy Wang Lee, a seasoned partner and up-and-coming star respectively who make a great team for prestigious patrons such as Vera Wang Group and Salesforce.com.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP

Constant involvement in major brand-related litigation positions Orrick at the leading edge of trademark law. It is distinguished by the level of specialisation on its trial team, which is the advantage of having people such as Annette Hurst and Diana Rutowski in the fold. Hurst – the lead member of the firm’s board of directors – is an IP heavyweight who has fought and won plenty of high-exposure or legally novel cases, many centred on the technology industry. She is currently representing Williams-Sonoma in a hard-fought suit again Amazon, with ramifications for brand owners in the retail and consumer goods spaces. With her on this, Rutowski sees complex cases from all angles, thanks to the creative problem-solving experience she has gained from her diverse litigation, strategic counselling and portfolio practice. Orrick isn’t just in this for the fight, though: it also conducts prosecution with brio, making good use of its international presence to do so globally. Names to note for brand protection include Beth Goldman and *WTR 1000* newcomer Betsy Wang Lee, a seasoned partner and up-and-coming star respectively who make a great team for prestigious patrons such as Vera Wang Group and Salesforce.com.

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP

A-listers in any sector can breathe easy when entrusting their prize IP assets to Pillsbury: it has a well-balanced team of experts, including adept prosecutors and litigators, who – sensitive to clients’ risk profiles – give tailored advice which facilitates critical strategic decision making. Percipient litigator Vijay Toke thinks several steps ahead to map out the most viable paths towards successful outcomes, which he has a fine record of achieving. He does this on the prosecution and portfolio side of his multifaceted practice, by designing protection matrices that minimise the potential of future disputes. He often works closely with fellow litigator Kenneth Keller, a “top-drawer trial lawyer with a great breadth of insightful IP knowledge”. Together, they recently secured a $5 million consent judgment for Hyundai Motor Company in a parallel import trademark infringement action against Direct Technologies. Focused on prosecution and enforcement, meanwhile, are Carolyn Toto and Patricia Cotton, who both receive special plaudits. “A thorough lawyer who also provides clear and concise counsel, Carolyn makes timely and specific recommendations that inspire confidence.” She has carved a niche in the internet and social media fields, and writes extensively on the subject. “Patty is highly responsive, attentive and diligent, and a wonderful person all round. She really understands business.”

Pranger Law PC 

Brand owners that engage Pranger Law have at their disposal hands-on, senior-level and exceptionally well-trained attorneys; the popular boutique has as many partners (four) as it does other fee earners, and is modelled to give a high-quality, agile and cost-effective service. Judging from superlative client feedback, it is delivering resoundingly on all fronts: “Pranger Law is one of the finest boutiques in the United States and has great lawyers who handle all trademark needs efficiently.” Some of the warmest praise is reserved for founding partner Holly Pranger, a “world-class” lawyer who “navigates the most difficult challenges with incredible confidence and skill”. “She stays focused on business goals and budget concerns and offers unmatched value for money.” Also singled out, Gail I Nevius Abbas has “tons of worldwide prosecution experience” and manages complex projects with ease. For Solera Holdings, which owns over 1,000 records in 100 or so countries, she recently completed an EU-to-national applications conversion effort in 27 jurisdictions, working collaboratively with foreign associates to get the job done. For a staunch ally in fraught litigation, look no further than Scott Lonardo.

Reed Smith LLP

Reed Smith has a supremely capable line-up of trademark practitioners in its Silicon Valley and San Francisco offices, whose collective know-how spans the brand spectrum. Hailed as a “phenomenal prosecution lawyer”, Katherine Basile leverages deep private practice and in-house experience to give a made-to-measure service. Jason Garcia – who has also worked in-house and as a USPTO trademark examiner – is likewise “first class in prosecution”. Sources appreciate his “level-headed, strategic approach to managing large portfolios”. Cited as “one of the best IP advocates on the market”, Robert Phillips cuts a dash in contentious scenarios.

Seyfarth Shaw LLP 

No matter how much trademark work it is plied with, Seyfarth Shaw delivers crisp results, deploying lean and nimble teams backed by cleverly designed support and collaboration systems. The insight, experience and pedigree of its leading lawyers frequently prove game changing on complex and sensitive briefs. Take Kenneth L Wilton, for example: he has proven himself time and again as a litigator, with sophisticated strategies born of an all-encompassing knowledge of IP law, not just of trademarks. The national trademark practice chair does a great job bringing together experts from different offices in the service of Fortune 500s. Joan Kupersmith Larkin is likewise gifted at navigating the global trademark market and getting from it what clients need for their business. She’s great with people and falls into a nice rhythm with those she represents, leading to better, faster results.

Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP

Well equipped for any trademark assignment, Sheppard Mullin is home to accomplished all-round brand lawyers flanked by some of the best IP trial attorneys in the business. For protection-plus-enforcement duties, both Lisa Martens and Michelle Kahn fit the bill perfectly. Martens “delivers work of unmatched quality while keeping costs low” and demonstrates impressive agility in tailoring her service to different-sized companies. Kahn takes care of the details when managing large portfolios, but sees the big commercial picture, too; she also has a facility for protecting brands online. Clients take confidence from the ability of Jill Pietrini and Carlo Van den Bosch to back them all the way should enterprise-threatening infringement issues arise. Pietrini is cited as a “top-of-the-line litigator who is very aggressive, but without ever crossing that line where things become personal”. A seasoned courtroom lawyer, she also has unbeatable experience in TTAB proceedings, of which she has handled hundreds. Van den Bosch has numerous benchmark wins to his name, but he isn’t someone who will fight for the sake of it; he plays an important strategic counselling role for clients, which keeps his horizons broad.

Sideman & Bancroft LLP 

An outpouring of positive feedback reflects well on the high-calibre performance of Sideman & Bancroft’s brand integrity and innovation group, which enjoys prime status within the full-service firm. “The team is flexible, business sensitive and extremely responsive, and can take many client enquiries and distil them down to a smaller number of necessary ones before giving pragmatic determinations. It exemplifies the highest level of professional capability and always delivers.” With 360-degree brand mavens such as Kelly P McCarthy, Béatrice Martinet and Ian K Boyd, and enforcement aces Jeffrey Hallam and Zachary J Alinder on deck, there are simply no gaps in its service. Executive committee member and chair of trademarks McCarthy has cracked the code of global trademark portfolio growth and value creation: “She provides detailed analyses, but formats her reports in way that makes them easy to digest – and she makes clear what’s to be done, which aids quick and effective decision making. She is prompt and well organised, and makes her clients’ lives easier.” Varian Medical Systems is one company to which she provides total support, acting alongside Martinet, who “delivers an excellent quality product when there are many tasks to complete in a short turnaround”. “Béatrice is well prepared from an operational perspective and works quickly, giving you enough runway to reflect on the options available. Her guidance and commentary are concise and to the point.” Moreover, “her team specialises in accurate logo and design searching, which is a huge advantage over other firms that lack this capacity”. Boyd is the ensemble’s top lawyer for TTAB proceedings, but also prosecutes, litigates and licenses IP rights with alacrity. Managing partner Hallam has helped to make anti-counterfeiting a key specialty of the firm; his investigative work has been fundamental to the success of many companies in the fight against fakes. Alinder “takes care of complex and significant cases with exceptional efficiency and cost-effectiveness”, for which patrons such as Lululemon Athletica and Cisco Systems are grateful.

Tucker Ellis LLP 

Tucker Ellis impresses with its comprehensive contentious/non-contentious trademark protection skillset, but is best known for its authority in the area of online brand enforcement. Both experts in this regard, David Steele and Howard Kroll come in for considerable praise from those who know them best. “David thinks outside the box and is exceptionally creative; he’s pragmatic, too, and keeps budgets in mind without sacrificing quality. His insight on cyber issues is highly beneficial and the quality of his service is great – he is responsive on all matters, large and small, and his billing practices are very fair.” In a cybersquatting and trademark infringement and dilution case of first impression, he is currently representing Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp in seeking to impose liability on an ICANN registrar and its privacy company for failure to disclose the identity of its cybersquatting customers. Also involved in this matter, Kroll “protects his clients in a smart, positive and energetic way, while facilitating business rather than being a barrier to it”.

Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati

Acting for many innovative companies that develop exciting new products and services, Wilson Sonsini’s trademark practitioners get to handle a lot of cutting-edge brand-related legal issues – and do so with confidence and poise. Characteristically tenacious and rigorous, the team pursues well-thought out strategies to advance the interests of leading internet and software names and an abundance of venture capital-backed emerging tech companies looking to make a splash with a strong brand. At the forefront of the practice is the gold-ranked John Slafsky, who gives first-rate primary care and helps to secure favourable outcomes to tricky disputes. Hugely appreciated by clients, “John has many years of experience, is deeply strategic in his thinking and does thorough, accurate, error-free work in a timely manner”.

Winston & Strawn LLP 

Incredible responsiveness and dedication only partly explain the appeal of Winston & Strawn’s trademark team; proficiency on all issues that touch clients’ brand and world-class trial skills further help to fill in the picture. Between them, San Francisco and Silicon Valley-based partners Laura Franco and Jennifer Golinveaux cover all the bases for top brands. Portfolio management star Franco “does great work in a timely fashion and stands ready to provide sound advice on filings and potential oppositions”. She blends knowledge of copyright and advertising law into her practice and understands how to negotiate and litigate licences and other contracts, giving her a well-rounded toolkit for problem solving. “Jennifer is an expert on trademark strategy and litigation and a smart, diligent and personable lawyer of the utmost professionalism. Her insights are hugely valuable when you have important business decisions to make.”

Other recommended experts

Tsan Abrahamson has a fine-grained appreciation of social media and advertising and marketing law, and often advises on promotions conducted via the leading social media platforms. The Cobalt lawyer is well pedigreed, having previously practised at Cooley; she also has in-house experience on her résumé. “Britt Anderson covers everything – USPTO office actions, EU trademark searches, Chinese filing strategies, multi-jurisdictional disputes, you name it. He gives business-friendly, practical advice, is always available and brings projects home successfully within tight deadlines.” Perkins Coie’s Palo Alto office is his base of operations. Brand value creation is the metier of Carole Barrett, a lawyer who is widely recognised for her strategic perspicacity. She takes the lead on trademark counselling and transactions at Barrett IP Law. Commercial litigation and intellectual property are the twin pillars of Marcy Bergman’s retail-centred but wide-ranging practice at Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner. She is a “phenomenally good and very tough litigator”. Klarquist Sparkman’s Lisa Caldwell is one of the rare attorneys with deep expertise in both trademarks and patents. Clients admire her as a “resourceful, customer-focused lawyer” and an “excellent team player”. Michelle Cooke sticks by clients as they evolve and brings hugely valuable institutional and business know-how to her engagements. “Michelle has a great personality and is excellent to work with – she’s a talented lawyer, but one with outstanding communication skills. She runs her team very well – her associates are knowledgeable, quick and amazingly responsive.” She leads the IP protection and enforcement group at Manatt. Chair of the IP and technology group at Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith, Daniel DeCarlo earns credit for the integrity with which he practises law. He isn’t focused on money, but on getting the right results, and goes above and beyond to do so in and out of the courtroom. As one high-profile example of this, in a dispute which ran hot over a lengthy period, he secured a trial and appellate ruling that client Omnia Italian Designs owed plaintiff Stone Creek no damages or profits for its adoption of the plaintiff’s trademark. Andrew Deutsch is endorsed as a “wise lawyer, top litigator and excellent mentor”. He practises at DLA Piper within the US trademark, copyright and media practice helmed by Gina Durham. Also recommended by peers, Durham “does great things as a creative problem solver”. Debuting in the WTR 1000 for 2021, Alesha Dominique chairs the trademark prosecution practice at Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp (MSK), but also makes a strong contribution on the contentious front. She sees clients’ issues in the round, meaning that her advice goes further. MSK has another valuable asset in Karin Pagnanelli, a “hardworking litigator with sound judgement in all types of trademark matters”. She scored a recent win for Activision against the purported owner of trademark rights in the Humvee military vehicle, which accused the videogame publisher of depicting the Humvee without authorisation in its Call of Duty games, adding to her and MSK’s track record of getting strong First Amendment protections for game developers and publishers. Scott Gerien gives “well-thought-out, practical advice in a very fast turnaround time” and is an authority on wine law. He practises at Dickenson Peatman & Fogarty. Dubbed “one of the smartest lawyers in the trademark world” by peers, Peter Harvey runs a “small but extremely high-quality practice” at Harvey & Company. He has a talent for alternative dispute resolution. San Francisco-based Venable partner Susan Hollander strengthens protections for big brands, exercising a gift for preventing third-party encroachment on her clients’ territory. She has made her mark as a litigator, with some high-profile jury trial wins to her name. Anthony Keats of KeatsGatien has a passion for brands, which he has protected and developed throughout his entire illustrious career. He continues to work on a lot of cool stuff involving luxury brands and Hollywood entertainment properties. “Lori Kozak is smart and efficient, and has an excellent strategic perspective on brand matters.” The Fox Rothschild trademark group co-chair has a deft touch on filings and enforcement in Latin America, Asia and other parts of the world. Russ August & Kabat partner Irene Lee is a master of all IP trades who understands everything that goes into creating, protecting, enforcing and monetising patents, trademarks and other rights. “David Martinez has weapons-grade knowledge of the minutiae of prosecuting trademark applications and defending infringement cases, and works tirelessly and with great enthusiasm for the parties he represents.” He anchors Robins Kaplan’s practice on the West Coast. Thomas McCarthy is an IP Hall of Fame member whose treatise on trademark and unfair competition law has been cited in thousands of judicial opinions, including multiple times in the Supreme Court. He is of counsel at Morrison & Foerster. Leydig Voit & Mayer’s Anne Naffziger has cultivated an extensive global network and keeps her finger on the pulse of international trademark law. Her advice on brand development and enforcement is always well informed, particularly as it relates to online protection matters. Gary Nelson has successfully registered trademarks in myriad countries throughout the world – numbering more than 150 at last count – and is a seasoned lead counsel in TTAB and other enforcement proceedings. The Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie lawyer also has domain name disputes and internet law on lock. He has great perseverance and the fortitude to overcome problems and achieve clients’ goals. Kenneth Parker recently joined Gibson Dunn from Haynes and Boone. As a battle-tested patent, trademark and commercial trial lawyer, he will fit right in at a firm known for taking – and winning – the toughest cases. Staci Jennifer Riordan handles cutting-edge trademark issues arising in fashion and retail; she understands how business works in the sector and, recognising that no two cases are the same, offers customised, practical solutions. She runs a vibrant counselling and litigation practice at Nixon Peabody. Her West Coast colleague Robert Weikert co-leads the firm’s complex commercial disputes practice and is a polished trademark, trade dress and trade secrets litigator. Having seen and done so much in the IP field, he solves problems nimbly and – sensitive to costs and commerce – gets results without automatic recourse to costly litigation. Having previously run his own eponymous firm for over a decade, Mike Rodenbaugh joined Loza & Loza in August 2020, bringing unparalleled ICANN expertise to its fast-growing IP group. Coblentz Patch Duffy & Bass’s Lawrence Siskind is a venerated name in intellectual property in Northern California. Leveraging vast litigation experience, he puts in place IP protections and strategies that minimise potential business disruption from disputes. Kirkland & Ellis’s Los Angeles office has a crack IP and commercial litigator in Diana Torres. Trademark, false advertising and unfair competition cases – typically with high stakes – are a major thread in her practice. She frequently links up with Dale Cendali in New York, creating a pairing that is not to be trifled with. One of Arnold & Porter’s select trial lawyers, Rhonda Trotter always has a busy docket, but never drops the ball on anything. Experian Information Solutions is one of the clients she supports; she recently secured it an appellate reversal of an adverse decision in a case regarding the copyrightability of marketing databases. Recommended by peers for his “smart and practical counsel”, Steven Marc Weinberg of Holmes Weinberg continues to feature in the WTR 1000 rankings for prosecution and litigation. He has a wide sphere of operation, but brands are central to his mission of giving strategic, commercially attuned general counsel to clients. Able to protect whatever content patrons create, Los Angeles-based Davis Wright Tremaine partner Alonzo Wickers is a go-to in the media and entertainment space. He recently successfully defended Showtime Networks and BBC in a trademark litigation suit brought by Bobby Brown and the estate of Bobbi Kristina Brown, alleging violations of the Lanham Act and state right of publicity law arising from trademark use in a documentary about Whitney Houston. “Philip Zender has a complete command of trademark law and advocates strongly for clients. His advice is extremely thorough and reflects the strategic aspects of his thinking. Highly responsive, he has a way of making each client feel like his only client – his service is second to none. Philip and Squire Patton Boggs are essential business partners and stand ready and willing to assist on any brand matter in any jurisdiction, while consistently delivering on quality.”

Individuals: enforcement and litigation

  • Andrew P Bridges - Fenwick & West LLP
  • John W Crittenden - Cooley LLP
  • Bobby Ghajar - Cooley LLP
  • Gregory S Gilchrist - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Peter Harvey - Harvey & Company
  • Robert N Phillips - Reed Smith LLP
  • Jill M Pietrini - Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP
  • John L Slafsky - Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  • David Steele - Tucker Ellis LLP 
  • Perry J Viscounty - Latham & Watkins LLP
  • Jedediah Wakefield - Fenwick & West LLP
  • Karen Webb - Fenwick & West LLP
  • Raffi V Zerounian - Hanson Bridgett LLP
  • Britt Anderson - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Eric Ball - Fenwick & West LLP
  • Ian C Ballon - Greenberg Traurig LLP
  • Jennifer Barry - Latham & Watkins LLP
  • Ian K Boyd - Sideman & Bancroft LLP 
  • Andrew L Deutsch - DLA Piper
  • Gina L Durham - DLA Piper
  • David R Eberhart - O’Melveny & Myers LLP
  • Michael Friedland - Knobbe Martens
  • Jennifer A Golinveaux - Winston & Strawn LLP
  • Valerie M Goo - Crowell & Moring LLP
  • Jeffrey Hallam - Sideman & Bancroft LLP 
  • Jeff K Joyner - Greenberg Traurig LLP
  • Anthony M Keats - KeatsGatien LLP
  • Kenneth Keller - Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • Howard Kroll - Tucker Ellis LLP 
  • Christian W Liedtke - Acuminis LLP
  • David Martinez - Robins Kaplan LLP
  • Larry W McFarland - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Susan M Natland - Knobbe Martens
  • John Paul Oleksiuk - Cooley LLP
  • Anne H Peck - Cooley LLP
  • Mark A Steiner - Duane Morris LLP
  • Vijay K Toke - Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • Diana Torres - Kirkland & Ellis LLP
  • Rhonda R Trotter - Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP
  • Carlo F Van den Bosch - Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP
  • Jane Shay Wald - Irell & Manella LLP
  • Steven Marc Weinberg - Holmes Weinberg PC
  • Dennis L Wilson - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Kenneth L Wilton - Seyfarth Shaw LLP 
  • Lynda J Zadra-Symes - Knobbe Martens
  • Zachary J Alinder - Sideman & Bancroft LLP 
  • Rochelle D Alpert - Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP
  • Marcy J Bergman - Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP
  • Ryan Bricker - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Noel M Cook - Hanson Bridgett LLP
  • Michelle A Cooke - Manatt Phelps & Phillips LLP
  • Daniel C DeCarlo - Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP
  • Michelle Donovan - Duane Morris
  • Angela Dunning - Cooley LLP
  • Laura Franco - Winston & Strawn LLP
  • Kathryn Fritz - Fenwick
  • Kent B Goss - Crowell & Moring LLP
  • David W Grace - Loeb & Loeb LLP
  • Lisa Greenwald-Swire - Fish & Richardson
  • David Grossman - Loeb & Loeb LLP
  • Susan E Hollander - Venable LLP
  • Annette L Hurst - Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP
  • Joan Kupersmith Larkin - Seyfarth Shaw LLP 
  • Scott Lonardo - Pranger Law PC 
  • Andrew MacKay - Donahue Fitzgerald LLP
  • Lisa M Martens - Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP
  • Carla B Oakley - Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP
  • Karin Pagnanelli - Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp LLP
  • Kenneth G Parker - Gibson Dunn
  • Joseph E Petersen - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Ali Razai - Knobbe Martens
  • Staci Jennifer Riordan - Nixon Peabody
  • Mike Rodenbaugh - Loza & Loza
  • Diana Rutowski - Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP
  • Daniel Schacht - Donahue Fitzgerald LLP
  • Sharon Smith - Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP
  • Carolyn S Toto - Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • Robert A Weikert - Nixon Peabody LLP
  • Alonzo Wickers - Davis Wright Tremaine LLP

Individuals: prosecution and strategy

  • Sally M Abel - Fenwick & West LLP
  • Jorge Arciniega - McDermott Will & Emery
  • Jennifer D Arkowitz - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Katherine M Basile - Reed Smith LLP
  • Connie L Ellerbach - Fenwick & West LLP
  • Beth M Goldman - Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP
  • David W Grace - Loeb & Loeb LLP
  • Susan L Heller - Greenberg Traurig LLP
  • John L Slafsky - Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  • Jane Shay Wald - Irell & Manella LLP
  • Karen Webb - Fenwick & West LLP
  • Raffi V Zerounian - Hanson Bridgett LLP
  • Carole F Barrett - Barrett IP Law
  • Ian K Boyd - Sideman & Bancroft LLP 
  • Noel M Cook - Hanson Bridgett LLP
  • Michelle A Cooke - Manatt Phelps & Phillips LLP
  • Patricia Cotton - Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • John W Crittenden - Cooley LLP
  • Laura Franco - Winston & Strawn LLP
  • Jason E Garcia - Reed Smith LLP
  • J Scott Gerien - Dickenson Peatman & Fogarty
  • Bobby Ghajar - Cooley LLP
  • Jennifer A Golinveaux - Winston & Strawn LLP
  • Lisa Greenwald-Swire - Fish & Richardson
  • Anne Hiaring Hocking - Donahue Fitzgerald LLP
  • Melanie J Howard - Loeb & Loeb LLP
  • Jonathan A Hyman - Knobbe Martens
  • Michelle Kahn - Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP
  • Joan Kupersmith Larkin - Seyfarth Shaw LLP 
  • Anthony J Malutta - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Lisa M Martens - Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP
  • Béatrice Martinet - Sideman & Bancroft LLP 
  • Kelly P McCarthy - Sideman & Bancroft LLP 
  • Susan M Natland - Knobbe Martens
  • John Paul Oleksiuk - Cooley LLP
  • Anne H Peck - Cooley LLP
  • Scott Pink - O’Melveny & Myers LLP
  • Holly Pranger - Pranger Law PC 
  • Diane Reed - Knobbe Martens
  • Carolyn S Toto - Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • Jeffrey Van Hoosear - Knobbe Martens
  • Steven Marc Weinberg - Holmes Weinberg PC
  • Kenneth L Wilton - Seyfarth Shaw LLP 
  • Tsan Abrahamson - Cobalt LLP
  • Rochelle D Alpert - Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP
  • Britt Anderson - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Jennifer Barry - Latham & Watkins LLP
  • Sarah Bro - McDermott Will & Emery
  • Lisa Caldwell - Klarquist Sparkman LLP
  • Alesha Dominique - Mitchell Silberberg
  • Michelle Donovan - Duane Morris
  • Stacey R Halpern - Knobbe Martens
  • Catherine J Holland - Knobbe Martens
  • Anthony M Keats - KeatsGatien LLP
  • Candice E Kim - Greenberg Traurig LLP
  • John Kim - IPLA
  • Lori S Kozak - Fox Rothschild LLP
  • Jennifer Lantz - Haynes and Boone LLP
  • Irene Y Lee - Russ August & Kabat
  • David Martinez - Robins Kaplan LLP
  • Anne Naffziger - Leydig, Voit & Mayer, Ltd
  • Gary Nelson - Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP 
  • Gail I Nevius Abbas - Pranger Law PC 
  • Dawn Newton - Donahue Fitzgerald
  • Carla B Oakley - Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP
  • R Gwen Peterson - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Staci Jennifer Riordan - Nixon Peabody
  • Daniel Schacht - Donahue Fitzgerald LLP
  • Mark A Steiner - Duane Morris LLP
  • Carlo F Van den Bosch - Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP
  • Betsy Wang Lee - Orrick
  • Garner K Weng - Hanson Bridgett LLP
  • Philip R Zender - Squire Patton Boggs

Luminaries

  • J Thomas McCarthy - Morrison & Foerster LLP
  • Lawrence J Siskind - Coblentz Patch Duffy & Bass LLP