Patent Litigation

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alphasteve
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Re: Patent Litigation

Postby alphasteve » Wed Aug 06, 2014 11:30 am

lacrossebrother wrote:I'm confused by the doc review/strict liability thing with regards to willfulness. Why doesn't that basically make your job the same as any case with scienter involved?

I can add 2 keywords into a document search to give to client to find out whether there was ever a discussion of the patent before the suit. That search is almost ALWAYS a zero hit search. Thus, you actually rarely have doc review on willfulness. In fact, D. Del. has adopted a new model order for patent law with a presumption that no email discovery should occur, and the parties wanting it have to justify it. And for the most part, the "knowledge" comes from a demand letter by the plaintiff, and everyone knows when the willfulness or indirect infringement clock starts.

skri65
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Re: Patent Litigation

Postby skri65 » Wed Aug 06, 2014 12:16 pm

dood wrote:
eric922 wrote:Those hours don't sound too bad. The week before trials sounds brutal, but I imagine its the same before deadlines in a lot of professions.


yeah you are 100% correct. most people who complain about big law hours just havent been in a real profession before. but if you did banking/consulting/maybe serious engineering, etc - its about the same. and of course there are slackers who work even less.


OK, so why does patent lit drain the life out of people if the hours aren't so bad?

As an aside, on a day to day basis, how often are patent litigators utilizing their technical background?

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alphasteve
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Re: Patent Litigation

Postby alphasteve » Wed Aug 06, 2014 12:21 pm

skri65 wrote:
dood wrote:
eric922 wrote:Those hours don't sound too bad. The week before trials sounds brutal, but I imagine its the same before deadlines in a lot of professions.


yeah you are 100% correct. most people who complain about big law hours just havent been in a real profession before. but if you did banking/consulting/maybe serious engineering, etc - its about the same. and of course there are slackers who work even less.


OK, so why does patent lit drain the life out of people if the hours aren't so bad?

As an aside, on a day to day basis, how often are patent litigators utilizing their technical background?

I've not seen or heard of patent lit being any worse than any other part of biglaw.

It depends on what is meant by using, but probably not day to day as you aren't digging into and understanding the accused technology day to day. Big ramp up in use at the beginning of a case, then claim construction, expert reports, and then trial. Basically any time you touch the asserted patents.

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ExBiglawAssociate
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Re: Patent Litigation

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Wed Aug 06, 2014 3:24 pm

alphasteve wrote:
Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:
senorhosh wrote:How hot is patent lit right now? Are median t14s who would have otherwise gotten 0-2 offers still getting a handful from IP like the past couple years?


Im a chem major with one year industry experience. How competitive am i for patent lit?
Sorry to hijack, but seems like there are more knowlegeable responses in this thread


not as hot as it used to be

Ehh.. I don't know about that. It's still pretty fucking hot, especially when you see the additional work in post-grant review proceedings. It's opened up a ton of additional work - many defendants are essentially front-loading their invalidity case and hoping for a stay of the litigation. I think filings are still up, as well.


Filings are up because everyone is bifurcating everything, including IPR petitions. Some people are filing three of four petitions on the same patent, and then you sometimes get another company doing the same thing on the same patent. It's all copying and pasting, though, after the first petition, so it's not high-hours work.

New case filings are up because of AIA.

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alphasteve
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Re: Patent Litigation

Postby alphasteve » Wed Aug 06, 2014 3:28 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:
Filings are up because everyone is bifurcating everything, including IPR petitions. Some people are filing three of four petitions on the same patent, and then you sometimes get another company doing the same thing on the same patent. It's all copying and pasting, though, after the first petition, so it's not high-hours work.

New case filings are up because of AIA.

Right... but that is more work, rather than less work, at any rate. I mean, its not like these things were going to trial more often pre-AIA. I don't think we are seeing any slowing in terms of demand for associates and recruiting.

supra135
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Re: Patent Litigation

Postby supra135 » Wed Aug 06, 2014 7:43 pm

alphasteve wrote:
Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:
Filings are up because everyone is bifurcating everything, including IPR petitions. Some people are filing three of four petitions on the same patent, and then you sometimes get another company doing the same thing on the same patent. It's all copying and pasting, though, after the first petition, so it's not high-hours work.

New case filings are up because of AIA.

Right... but that is more work, rather than less work, at any rate. I mean, its not like these things were going to trial more often pre-AIA. I don't think we are seeing any slowing in terms of demand for associates and recruiting.


Is a promotion to junior partner the only possibility for a change in your general responsibilities? Or are there other milestones - and how do you reach them?

I know a patent prosecutor who was recently promoted to junior partner (without having had any clients yet) - his job changed considerably because now he is mostly concerned with gathering clients for prosecution. Albeit until he is bringing a a certain minimum flow of revenue to the firm, he still needs to submit billable hours. So I am curious how similar or different the responsibilities are of a partner who ascended via litigation.

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alphasteve
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Re: Patent Litigation

Postby alphasteve » Wed Aug 06, 2014 8:43 pm

supra135 wrote:
alphasteve wrote:
Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:
Filings are up because everyone is bifurcating everything, including IPR petitions. Some people are filing three of four petitions on the same patent, and then you sometimes get another company doing the same thing on the same patent. It's all copying and pasting, though, after the first petition, so it's not high-hours work.

New case filings are up because of AIA.

Right... but that is more work, rather than less work, at any rate. I mean, its not like these things were going to trial more often pre-AIA. I don't think we are seeing any slowing in terms of demand for associates and recruiting.


Is a promotion to junior partner the only possibility for a change in your general responsibilities? Or are there other milestones - and how do you reach them?

I know a patent prosecutor who was recently promoted to junior partner (without having had any clients yet) - his job changed considerably because now he is mostly concerned with gathering clients for prosecution. Albeit until he is bringing a a certain minimum flow of revenue to the firm, he still needs to submit billable hours. So I am curious how similar or different the responsibilities are of a partner who ascended via litigation.


Partners take witnesses at trial and generally handle the deposition of experts. They will also likely argue the key terms at a Markman. Associates of all ranges have taken depositions, argued claim terms, and been on trial teams (at least at my firm). A lot of our young partners are still not bringing in business. Frankly, where prosecution is not all that expensive, litigation can be. So, GC's don't want to deal with non-partners when determining who to send a case to. Other than that, partners oversee the case as it goes along. Midlevels and younger associates do all of the motion practice, discovery, and are substantively involved in technical expert reports - though some partners may take control at this point. I actually feel like I have a significant amount of experience given my class year - I've taken 9 depos and defended 1. Granted, most of those were in a federal court pro bono matter, but two of them were of named defendants in non-patent IP lit case in federal court.




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