The National Law Journal released the 2016 Intellectual Property Hot List: a special report recognizing 15 law firms that performed exceptionally well in intellectual property. In no particular ranking, each of the 15 firms stood out for handling remarkable IP cases in 2015. Ranging in size, from Biglaw to small, IP boutiques, some firms lead victorious cases that impacted major industries.
Jenner & Block gained recognition for saving rapper, Jay-Z, who faced a copyright infringement battle for using a sample of an Egyptian composer’s song in one of his own in 2000. Andrew Bart, partner at Jenner, argued and won the case on the first day of trial. The Chicago-based firm also claimed big wins on the patent side for their clients: Hospira Inc., Dow Chemical Co., and Nissan North American Inc. Attorneys at Jenner are now working on new litigation cases over the innovative technology associated with gene editing.
According to the NLJ report, California-based Cooley faced a $500 million patent infringement case representing Qualcomm Technologies Inc. against ParkerVision Inc. involving converting electromagnetic signs from high to low frequency. Timothy Teter, a younger generation partner at Cooley, argued the case, resulting in the three-judge panel reversing the original verdict.
Biglaw Kirkland & Ellis made the IP Hot List, in large part, due to their extraordinary patent litigation team. Kirkland partners, Dale Cendali and Daniel Bond, handled a copyright case for Nike Inc. in 2015. Photographer Jacobus Rentmeester accused the Nike brand of copying a 1984 photo he took for Life magazine of Michael Jorden to use for its famous “Jumpman” logo—a $2 billion brand. New York partner Greg Arovas told NLJ, “There’s really substantial trial work done by some of the less senior people in the department.”
Los Angeles-based Sheppard Mullin, a firm less than half the size of Kirkland, won a unanimous case against the U.S. Supreme Court. Incredibly, the case in point, Hana Financial v. Hana Bank, was one that had not been brought to the high court in almost 100 years. Sheppard also gained a notable win in its six-year litigation fight in Intellect Wireless v. HTC, ultimately resulting in the court awarding HTC Corp. $4.1 million. According to the National Law Journal, the firm’s IP practice has grown three times in size since 2006.
Among the other dominating Intellectual Property firms that made the 2016 IP Hot List were: Covington & Burling, Debevoise & Plimpton, Fish & Richardson, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, Goodwin Procter, Irell & Manella, Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton, Morrison & Foerster, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox, and Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr.
Contact Bill Sugarman for more information.
The National Law Journal released the very first NLJ 500 this year: a compilation of the 500 largest U.S.-based law firms. This year, in addition to the annual report of the top 350 largest firms, NLJ included 150 more law firms and ranked those into two tiers: “mid-tier” and “on-the-cusp-of-Big-Law” firms.
Dentons, previously one of the largest U.S. firms, has been removed from the NLJ 500 due to its expansion and large number of attorneys in China. In order to make the cut, firms must have more lawyers in the U.S. than in any other country. It comes as no surprise that Baker & McKenzie is leading the chart for a second year with a mass of 4,363 lawyers.
San Francisco based Farella Braun + Martel just made the cut making them the smallest firm in the top 350. Overall, the smallest firms that made the NLJ 500 were Davis, Brown, Koehn, Shors & Roberts in Des Moines; Goldberg Kohn in Chicago; and BatesCarey in Chicago. The most shocking decline on the NLJ 500 for 2015 was Kenyon & Kenyon’s 29% decrease in head count of attorneys.
For more information, contact Bill Sugarman.
The National Law Journal recently released a review of the major legal news in Washington’s ‘big law’ for 2015, including reports on the paramount moves and mergers, influential administrative changes, and the “reinvention” of the D.C. law practice.
Dentons continues its reign as the world’s largest firm, announcing ten “tie-ups” with other firms in 2015, including those in China, Australia, and Mexico, among other countries (as reported by the National Law Journal).
Litigators with multi-millions in portable business and experience in the federal government were in high demand, according to the National Law Journal, since “the hotbed of white-collar enforcement activity is now centered squarely in Washington, D.C.” (Debevoise & Plimpton partner David O’Neil, as quoted by The National Law Journal). Many former representatives and senators flocked to the ‘big law’ D.C. firms in search of positions in lobbying and legislative practice groups.
In fact, despite the financial drawbacks of lobbying as a legal practice, the National Law Journal announces that “the large law firms in Washington still want to do it.” And lobbying certainly got its fair share of the limelight when Former House Speaker Dennis Hastert, a Washington lobbyist, pleaded guilty to federal charges of evading currency-reporting requirements by illegally structuring cash withdrawals.
Read more about these and the other legal trends of 2015 in the National Law Journal.