United States: Washington

Firms

  • Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
  • Perkins Coie LLP
  • Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Dorsey & Whitney LLP
  • Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP 
  • Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  • Foster Garvey
  • Lane Powell PC
  • Stokes Lawrence PS

Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC

With a rich tradition of excellence in all facets of trademark practice, Seattle boutique COJK has long established itself as a go-to in the Pacific Northwest for an attentive, partner-led, high-quality service at reasonable rates. It built out its trademark group in 2020 with the hire of former Lane Powell attorneys Frances Jagla and Peter Becker, each of whom brings something special to the practice. Rights holders find that Jagla frequently makes the difference with her eminently practical, legalese-free advice and sparkling interpersonal qualities. Cut from the same cloth, Becker is someone whom businesspeople love to work with: the former in-house counsel has rock-solid portfolio management skills, but also understands commercial risk. They join Melissa Nowak and Jerald Nagae, who continue to shine in their roles – Nowak as a hybrid patent and brand counsellor, and Nagae as a true IP all-rounder. Coming in for special praise, Nowak is “more than just a lawyer, but a trusted adviser” to clients: “Melissa is extremely conscientious and responsive, and has a thorough understanding of what you need as a brand owner.” She frequently collaborates with Nagae in support of patrons such as International Paper Company and JBT Corporation, making an incredibly effective pairing. Nagae stands out for his amazing depth of IP knowledge – if you have a question, he will almost certainly have the answer.

Davis Wright Tremaine LLP

Davis Wright Tremaine practises at the vanguard of trademark law: as examples, it understands the most nuanced brand issues emanating from the development and rollout of new technologies, and has also designed innovative methods for shutting down counterfeiters and other infringers in a global context. A deep bench is another distinguishing feature of the firm, which has five individuals listed in the WTR 1000 2021, up from three in 2020. The newcomers are Jeff Nelson and Bonnie MacNaughton, both of whom garner rave reviews. “Deeply committed, Jeff is a tremendous practitioner who delivers considered, practical guidance. Greatly deserving of recognition, he is also a man of integrity with a self-effacing nature in a profession that often rewards those who engage in bombastic self-aggrandisement. When disputes arise, those in the know turn to Jeff, who is excellent at thinking outside the box and resolving matters cost effectively.” “Bonnie is hugely knowledgeable on the subjects of cybercrime and trademark infringement. Benefiting from her previous experience at Microsoft, she understands clients’ business and goals, and uses her creativity to realise them.” Also strongly endorsed are brand strategist Matthew Moersfelder and seasoned international rights protector Cindy Caditz, who make a return to the rankings once again this year. “Matthew has a thoughtfulness and acuity about him that set him apart from other counsel. He does tremendous work educating marketing departments on trademark best practice and is prompt and thorough in his interactions with everyone, including adverse parties and their representatives.” “Cindy has a lifetime of experience and is a tough, highly skilled negotiator.” Patrons include K-2 Sports, which has an extensive portfolio of valuable ski and sporting brands. All of these lawyers are comfortable handling contentious matters; but for hardcore litigation, Stuart Dunwoody is the person to call.

Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Advising on intellectual property to advance business development is the raison d’être of Dorsey & Whitney’s superb trademark, copyright and advertising group. The team knows which way the winds are blowing and how quickly paradigm shifts such as offline to online commerce can happen, and relishes matters of strategic significance that require fresh thinking. In line with this, the firm also has the confidence to litigate trademark cases involving sophisticated issues that don’t fit neatly into defined categories – meat and drink to crack litigators and trial lawyers such as Michael Keyes. Keyes anchors the practice in Seattle and is an essential ally for litigants when the stakes are high.

Foster Garvey

A major player in the Pacific Northwest, full-service outfit Foster Garvey deploys a well-rounded IP team of experienced prosecutors, portfolio managers and litigators to take care of the total brand needs of dynamic companies large and small. An “amazing lawyer – and person – who fights hard for her clients”, Claire Hawkins is the key contact for all things trademark related. She has a keen eye for IP value creation, which informs her trademark protection, licensing and enforcement efforts.

Lane Powell PC

Recent departures have thinned the bench at Lane Powell in Seattle, but the respected commercial firm still has pull for regional rights holders thanks to the one-stop shopping opportunity it affords, along with international – and particularly Asia-Pacific – business expertise. For a dyed-in-the-wool trademark and IP specialist, look to Paul Swanson, who acts as both sword and shield for companies in the food and agribusiness sectors.

Perkins Coie LLP

Safeguarding IP rights in the United States, China and all around the world, Perkins Coie is not just a hot IP brand in Washington and the surrounding region, but globally. There’s nothing that its phalanx of trademark specialists cannot handle: it manages a vast number of filings and registrations and keeps infringers at bay, often working on cutting-edge issues in areas such as online enforcement. Several stars in its constellation base themselves in Seattle, including trademark, copyright, internet and advertising practice chair Patchen Haggerty; arts and entertainment industry group leader Lynne Graybeal; and high-flying litigator William Cheever Rava – three lawyers about whom clients have great things to say. “Patchen accomplishes things with trademark portfolios that lawyers at other firms give up on trying. She is smart, creative and a delight to partner with.” “Lynne has incredible knowledge born of deep experience and provides pragmatic guidance on international trademark registration and disputes.” “Will isn’t afraid to fight hard, but is extraordinarily reasonable, as well as tenacious. He seeks the best resolutions for clients and goes about things in a practical way.” James Vana and Grace Han Stanton also make vital contributions in the form of great leadership and versatility. Vana serves a host of international brands and does a superb job coordinating with foreign associates to get results quickly and efficiently. In terms of fundamental prosecution skill, Stanton is hard to beat; she also stands out for her cool, calm and collected demeanour, which helps her take care of complex projects under pressure with time to spare.

Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP 

Seattle boutique Seed IP traces its roots back 60 years and has since become synonymous with excellence in both patent and trademark practice. Its ability to serve the full IP needs of innovative companies is central to its identity; as are its tailored service and high-quality output. In Russell C Pangborn, it has one of the city’s most respected IP professionals: the former Microsoft man is a “remarkably dedicated practitioner who is utterly devoted to the success of his clients”. “He has an innate ability to bring people together and is a wonderful dealmaker.” Counselling is the focus of his practice; as it is for Kevin S Costanza, whose value lies in his blended patent and trademark expertise. Marc C Levy takes point on litigation and enforcement matters, but does a lot of behind-the-scenes strategic work for clients.

Stokes Lawrence PS

Stokes Lawrence has a sterling reputation among in-house counsel, thanks to its non-transactional approach to relationship building, holistic IP and other capabilities, diversity and international network. Brand owners can expect rigorous support through all phases of the trademark lifecycle and the close attention of seasoned pros such as Leslie Vander Griend and Shannon Jost. With creative flair and a knack for quick problem solving, Vander Griend is hailed as a “pragmatic, conscientious lawyer who puts clients first, goes the extra mile and provides great value”. She puts her prosecution, enforcement and litigation skills to good use on behalf of famous names such as Pearl Jam, for which she recently recovered several infringing domain names. Meanwhile, Jost is appreciated for her persistence and proactivity as a litigator.

Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati

Strategic brand building and must-win litigation are fortes of Wilson Sonsini’s sophisticated trademark team, which is a prime pick for companies at the bleeding edge of technological innovation. Its attorneys engage in original thinking and see round corners to eliminate trademark problems before they become major obstacles to business success. Aaron Hendelman does this brilliantly for many household-name internet and software brands, making a lasting impression in the process. “Aaron is an exceptionally intelligent and accomplished attorney whose expertise extends across all aspects of trademark, copyright, advertising and related areas of law. He is particularly good in transactional scenarios and handles extremely complex licensing negotiations with great skill.”

Other recommended experts

Great references from high places put Stephen Coates in the WTR 1000 for the first time this year. “He has a sharp, focused mind and sees the big picture as well as the detail. His years of in-house experience have given him a practical, business-friendly approach to the work. He also responds rapidly and accurately, and carries out instructions for a low cost.” He runs an IP, marketing and privacy law boutique under his own name. Miller Nash Graham & Dunn’s Robert Cumbow is a venerated name in intellectual property in the Pacific Northwest and one of the region’s savviest trademark minds. He handles all types of matters for all manner of clients, which translates into 360-degree counsel. K&L Gates has an ace up its sleeve in Pam Jacobson, a former scientist turned legal practice innovator whose solutions ensure airtight protection and take a load off the shoulders of busy in-house counsel. Patrons include Seattle-based Zillow Group, which instructs her on a wide variety of IP matters. Co-chair of the trademark prosecution practice at Cozen O’Connor, Lorraine Linford acquits herself with distinction as a global portfolio builder and manager.

Individuals

  • Cindy L Caditz - Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
  • Robert C Cumbow - Miller Nash Graham & Dunn LLP
  • Stuart R Dunwoody - Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
  • Lynne E Graybeal - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Patchen M Haggerty - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Frances M Jagla - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Russell C Pangborn - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP 
  • Grace Han Stanton - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Peter Becker - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Stephen Coates - Coates IP 
  • Kevin S Costanza - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP 
  • Claire Hawkins - Foster Garvey
  • Aaron Hendelman - Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  • Pam Jacobson - K&L Gates LLP
  • Shannon M Jost - Stokes Lawrence PS
  • J Michael Keyes - Dorsey & Whitney LLP
  • Marc C Levy - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP 
  • Lorraine Linford - Cozen O’Connor
  • Bonnie E MacNaughton - Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
  • Matthew Moersfelder - Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
  • Jerald E Nagae - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Jeff Nelson - Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
  • Melissa A Nowak - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • William Cheever Rava - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Paul D Swanson - Lane Powell PC
  • James L Vana - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Leslie C Vander Griend - Stokes Lawrence PS