Intellectual property litigator salary?

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jeremyxx45
Posts: 7
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 12:36 am

Intellectual property litigator salary?

Postby jeremyxx45 » Sat Mar 19, 2011 11:13 pm

Would an IP litigation attorney make more money than a regular IP attorney?

Omerta
Posts: 381
Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2010 6:47 pm

Re: Intellectual property litigator salary?

Postby Omerta » Sat Mar 19, 2011 11:31 pm

Probably if the IP lit attorney could sit for the patent bar. If you're a random social sciences major who just fucking loves IP, then you'll probably get the same salary. Most firms have the higher starting salary contingent on sitting for and passing the patent bar.

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dresq
Posts: 154
Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 3:05 pm

Re: Intellectual property litigator salary?

Postby dresq » Sat Mar 19, 2011 11:58 pm

jeremyxx45 wrote:Would an IP litigation attorney make more money than a regular IP attorney?

No, assuming you're talking about firm work and what you will make as a junior associate. IP litigators generally make what other attorneys make in the relevant geographic market. (The two caveats I know of are (1) Banner & Witcoff I think paid $5k above market, which is trivial IMO, and (2) Finnegan used to give a $10k bonus to PhDs. Either or both of those may no longer be true, and maybe they are.) In general, lock-step is lock step. It's not like there is a shortage of credentialed patent-lawyer wannabees out there these days (even if they're slightly in higher demand than in other fields). Moreover, because general litigators often handle IP litigation (e.g. WilmerHale often does this, with IP core attorneys to assist with any technical matters along the way), it's not like you're super-special as a litigator, at least no more than an other specialized litigator. That said, advancement opportunities may be more available in litigation, if you're in a firm that focuses on litigation and just does prosecution as a service its litigation clients. Patent litigation is generally a more profitable enterprise that patent prosecution, but that does not typically spill over into associate salary, except that firms that focus more on prosecution generally--but not always--pay less (e.g. Finnegan, Fish, Kenyon, and BigLaw pay more than Oliff & Berridge and the like).

Omerta wrote:Probably if the IP lit attorney could sit for the patent bar. If you're a random social sciences major who just fucking loves IP, then you'll probably get the same salary. Most firms have the higher starting salary contingent on sitting for and passing the patent bar.

Not true. The patent bar mostly just tests you on how to push paper at the PTO. It's not particularly difficult to pass, nor is it much of a feather in anybody's cap if they plan to practice patent law. It's more of an expected, rather than a value-added, credential. And if you haven't already passed it, most firms will pay for you to prepare for and take it. They certainly won't pay more to you if you already have it, though. Maybe it's a marginal boost in getting hired, but probably not much of one.




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