IP Law

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )
User avatar
whatchootalkinbout
Posts: 113
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2009 11:13 am

IP Law

Postby whatchootalkinbout » Tue Jan 26, 2010 2:44 pm

I have a quick question which may have been addressed in previous threads, so please link me if it has. I am interested in pursuing Intellectual Property Law, and I know several law schools have programs specifically designed for IP Law, but I was wondering if it is necessary to go to a school with an IP program in order to become an IP lawyer or if the knowledge/experience can be achieved via summer internships, gaining visiting student status at neighboring universities with said programs, etc. While I know coming from a T14 school would put me in a favorable position for purusing IP law, I'm referring more to T20 and T30 schools. For example, W&L is one of my top choices, but it doesn't have a specific IP program. If I went there, would I still be able to vie for positions at (successful) IP firms?

So I realized that wasn't exactly a "quick question," but if someone could shed some light on the topic, that would be great.

User avatar
nealric
Posts: 2391
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 9:53 am

Re: IP Law

Postby nealric » Tue Jan 26, 2010 2:49 pm

but I was wondering if it is necessary to go to a school with an IP program in order to become an IP lawyer or if the knowledge/experience can be achieved via summer internships, gaining visiting student status at neighboring universities with said programs, etc. While I know coming from a T14 school would put me in a favorable position for purusing IP law, I'm referring more to T20 and T30 schools. For example, W&L is one of my top choices, but it doesn't have a specific IP program. If I went there, would I still be able to vie for positions at (successful) IP firms?


No, it doesn't matter all that much. One thing that can make a difference is that certain schools (like GW) may attract more IP employers to on-campus interviews. However, what's far more important is your technical background.

User avatar
UFMatt
Posts: 404
Joined: Sun Jul 26, 2009 2:59 pm

Re: IP Law

Postby UFMatt » Tue Jan 26, 2010 2:52 pm

First priority should be overall ranking. Only after that would I consider the specialized IP ranking as well as the market that the school feeds into. In the T20-T30 range, GW in DC is generally considered a strong choice for IP law.

I'm also planning on IP law, but I'm mostly concerned with overall rank combined with the scholarship offer the school is willing to provide. I didn't even apply to GW given how expensive it is.

edit: Two Lionel Hutz avatars in a row!

User avatar
S de Garmeaux
Posts: 434
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2009 2:00 pm

Re: IP Law

Postby S de Garmeaux » Tue Jan 26, 2010 2:53 pm

nealric wrote: However, what's far more important is your technical background.


are you referring to a background in science or engineering?

User avatar
UFMatt
Posts: 404
Joined: Sun Jul 26, 2009 2:59 pm

Re: IP Law

Postby UFMatt » Tue Jan 26, 2010 2:54 pm

sdegarmo wrote:
nealric wrote: However, what's far more important is your technical background.


are you referring to a background in science or engineering?


I think by that, he meant that certain technical fields require different levels of education for IP law. Biology, for instance, is best served with a PhD, whereas engineers can largely get by with a bachelors.

therealfp
Posts: 55
Joined: Fri May 02, 2008 12:15 am

Re: IP Law

Postby therealfp » Wed Jan 27, 2010 4:58 pm

UFMatt wrote:
sdegarmo wrote:
nealric wrote: However, what's far more important is your technical background.


are you referring to a background in science or engineering?


I think by that, he meant that certain technical fields require different levels of education for IP law. Biology, for instance, is best served with a PhD, whereas engineers can largely get by with a bachelors.


I'd also include previous employment (as an engineer or scientist) in the 'technical experience' bucket

User avatar
BigFatPanda
Posts: 319
Joined: Wed Jan 20, 2010 10:47 am

Re: IP Law

Postby BigFatPanda » Wed Jan 27, 2010 5:05 pm

whatchootalkinbout wrote:I have a quick question which may have been addressed in previous threads, so please link me if it has. I am interested in pursuing Intellectual Property Law, and I know several law schools have programs specifically designed for IP Law, but I was wondering if it is necessary to go to a school with an IP program in order to become an IP lawyer or if the knowledge/experience can be achieved via summer internships, gaining visiting student status at neighboring universities with said programs, etc. While I know coming from a T14 school would put me in a favorable position for purusing IP law, I'm referring more to T20 and T30 schools. For example, W&L is one of my top choices, but it doesn't have a specific IP program. If I went there, would I still be able to vie for positions at (successful) IP firms?

So I realized that wasn't exactly a "quick question," but if someone could shed some light on the topic, that would be great.


I am not sure if you're referring to trademark or patent IP.

1. If you're talking about trademark, then any school in the T20-T30 range should be fine.
2. If you're talking about patent, you'll get more opportunity with IP firms if you go to a school with patent track. See Emory TI-CER if you believe GWU is too expensive. Overall, you should be in good shape as long as you do well in a T20-T30 range school.

Regardless of tracks, what is important is that you need to emphasize on networking, a school career service will only get you so far. It is up to you to nail any opportunity that comes your way.

User avatar
Aeon
Posts: 583
Joined: Mon Nov 16, 2009 10:46 pm

Re: IP Law

Postby Aeon » Wed Jan 27, 2010 7:44 pm

Most law schools offer at least a class or two on intellectual property law. Some have many more classes on the subject (like Berkeley and Stanford). To be honest, I'd say that you'd be better off going to the overall best law school that you can, as chances are you'll be able to take at least a couple IP law classes there, and in any case, you might find that you prefer a different type of law altogether (and a more prestigious degree can give you greater flexibility in finding a job in any legal specialty).

An interesting resource is Brian Leiter's assessment of the "Best Faculties" at the top law schools. Although it covers only the top 16 or so schools, it might be helpful just as a reference point.

User avatar
whatchootalkinbout
Posts: 113
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2009 11:13 am

Re: IP Law

Postby whatchootalkinbout » Wed Jan 27, 2010 9:37 pm

Thanks for the responses!

blueberrymuffin
Posts: 54
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2009 6:58 pm

Re: IP Law

Postby blueberrymuffin » Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:37 pm

I've been told by a practicing attorney that the most important thing is to learn the general "lawyering skills"- the rest is just frosting on the cake, so to speak. Another thing that they pointed out is that swamping your schedule with IP related classes in place of some of the more "standard" bar-related classes might mean extra learning on your own later when you go to take the state bar. I am taking both factors into consideration.

User avatar
Aeon
Posts: 583
Joined: Mon Nov 16, 2009 10:46 pm

Re: IP Law

Postby Aeon » Fri Jan 29, 2010 11:16 am

blueberrymuffin wrote:I've been told by a practicing attorney that the most important thing is to learn the general "lawyering skills"- the rest is just frosting on the cake, so to speak. Another thing that they pointed out is that swamping your schedule with IP related classes in place of some of the more "standard" bar-related classes might mean extra learning on your own later when you go to take the state bar. I am taking both factors into consideration.

You learn a great deal of what most states' bars require in your 1L classes. Then, it's standard practice that you take a Bar Review course after law school before taking the actual bar exam. Taking classes in 2L and 3L with the sole aim of preparing for the bar exam is, in my opinion, a waste of your tuition money. If you're interested in a specific field of law, and your school offers classes in that field, why not take advantage of that opportunity? Chances are, you won't get another chance like it once you graduate from LS.




Return to “Choosing a Law School”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: no exit, Socratease, WamBamThankYouMaam and 1 guest