Litigation Practice Group Leader, Kurt Glitzenstein, discusses the benefits IP specialists offer clients and why they have an edge at trial in a Law360 two-part series:
1.) They Offer a Comprehensive View
“The post-grant proceedings brought before the board can be very challenging—legally, technically and procedurally—according to Kurt Glitzenstein, head of the litigation group at IP boutique Fish & Richardson PC. To have a real edge at trial, lawyers need to be familiar with the practice at the PTAB and understand the law and technology deeply, he said.
‘We have a large docket of both patent cases and inter partes review matters, and that means we’ve seen and done it all,’ he said. ‘Frankly, there are few, if any, litigation or post-grant strategies we haven’t faced. These IP areas are where getting it right is absolutely critical. There is no margin for error on these issues.’”
2.) They Have an Appreciation for Nuance
“‘The facts and technical history for the underlying patents are so critical for the presentation of the issues,’ he said. ‘We have a natural advantage right from the start in terms of understanding what the technology in the dispute is.’
Having a technical degree also allows attorneys to strengthen bonds with their clients, he said.
‘When we sit down with chemists or electrical engineers, it gives them comfort to know their matters are being handled by lawyers who appreciate the work they do,’ he said. ‘That makes for an environment that is conducive to comfortable exchanges to understand what technology is and to prepare if we need to go to trial.’
Jurors want to deliberate on the evidence while having a clear understanding of the technology in dispute, and trial attorneys who generalize or oversimplify the issues aren’t necessarily helping jurors arrive at a decision, according to Glitzenstein.
‘I had a case go to trial that involved what happens to light as it travels through fiber optics,’ he said. ‘You couldn’t see the light passing through fiber, but our ability to understand the fundamental physics of what was going on allowed us to effectively explain the very special way light propagate through a small optical fiber. We could really educate the jury about the underlying physics to allow them to deliberate on the core questions of the case.’”
3.) Their Trial Knowhow is Only Going to Grow
“In 2015 alone, Fish & Richardson tried 12 patent cases— nine district court cases and three at the U.S. International Trade Commission—and Glitzenstein isn’t worried about competition coming from general trial lawyers.
‘I have not seen a situation where I think a general lawyer would be naturally better at handling an IP case for some reason,’ he said. ‘That lawyers isn’t going to resonate in the same way as my colleagues who can take complex issues and present them in ways that are effective in helping juries understand what the issues are and reach a verdict.’
And he said client demand for his firm’s patent litigation specialists speaks for itself.
‘We are hired for patent litigation matters more than twice as often as our nearest competitor,’ he said. ‘It shows that clients recognize the benefits of specialization.’”
Read the entire Law360 story “3 Reasons IP Specialists Have An Edge At Trial” by clicking here.
The opinions expressed are those of the authors on the date noted above and do not necessarily reflect the views of Fish & Richardson P.C., any other of its lawyers, its clients, or any of its or their respective affiliates. This post is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be and should not be taken as legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is formed.