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Juanita R. Brooks is a nationally recognized trial and appellate attorney who focuses on complex intellectual property, product liability, and mass tort litigation. She is an innovative, formidable litigator with a demonstrated, near-perfect winning record in complex, high-stakes lawsuits that few trial attorneys can match.

A master storyteller, Ms. Brooks paints pictures with words to explain the complex technologies at the center of her matters to judges and juries in a way that is both understandable and compelling and will be remembered throughout the trial. Law360 named her an “Icon of IP” for her “skill at trying complicated patent cases without getting bogged down in the technical weeds” and said she is a “jury whisperer.” She has also been heralded by the American Lawyer as “a titan of the patent bar” upon receiving the Litigator of the Year honors.

Her skill at connecting with courtroom audiences has made her a go-to litigator when the stakes are high for companies that range from startups to Fortune 10 corporations. Ms. Brooks’ successes in patent litigation have protected billions of dollars in sales for her clients and have helped define the ever-evolving landscape of patent and IP law. Her clients represent a cross-section of cutting-edge industries including software, medical device, pharmaceutical, and electronics.

Having handled more than 150 trials during her career, Ms. Brooks is highly skilled at cases that rest, in large part, on expert analysis, testing, and testimony.  Utilizing Fish’s science and technology-intensive expertise, she crafts novel, outside the box legal strategies. Her ability to present and challenge expert testimony in court has been a decisive factor in courtroom victories. In one case the trial judge noted that the opposing expert’s “credibility was eviscerated on cross-examination” by Ms. Brooks.

Throughout her 41-year career, Ms. Brooks’ numerous trials have resulted in notable wins. In 2018, the Federal Circuit unanimously affirmed a decision for her client Gilead Sciences in which Ms. Brooks successfully wiped out a $200 million damages award by convincing the court that opposing party Merck was guilty of unclean hands. In defense of client Microsoft, Ms. Brooks scored a huge jury win in 2017 in which the plaintiff originally demanded $63 million in damages. The jury returned a noninfringement verdict on every claim, awarding nothing to the plaintiff. Also, in 2017, Ms. Brooks represented GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in a patent infringement lawsuit involving GSK’s highly-successful drug Coreg. By utilizing a novel patent infringement theory, she convinced a jury that the defendant had willfully infringed and GSK was award $235 million in damages.  In 2016, she led a team that successfully defended one of the largest mass tort/wrongful death cases in the United States, which included 12,000 cases (some of them class actions representing hundreds of individual plaintiffs).

As a Latina, Ms. Brooks has shattered gender and ethnic barriers to become one of the U.S.’s top IP litigators, having received numerous honors for her courtroom successes and her devotion to the practice of law. In October 2018, she received a National Women In Law Lifetime Achievement Award from Corporate Counsel. In 2017, Ms. Brooks was inducted into the California Bar Trial Lawyer Hall of Fame, the first Latina honoree and only the third inductee from San Diego to receive this honor.

While she tries cases nationally, she is also very active in her local community and played a significant role in drafting the original and the subsequent amendments to local patent rules for the Southern District of California.

As an elected member of the firm’s Management Committee, Ms. Brooks has championed policies that have changed the culture and diversity of Fish and become blueprints for similar policies at other firms.

After graduating from Yale law school, Ms. Brooks returned to San Diego and worked for Federal Defenders, Inc. She eventually opened her own practice, the first Latina to become a criminal defense solo practitioner in the community. She went on to be a partner in a preeminent international law firm before joining Fish in 2000.


Yale Law School 1977

San Diego State University 1974


  • California 1977
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • California Supreme Court

Memberships & Affiliations

Board Member and pro bono counsel, Western Center on Law & Poverty 2005-2014
Founding member, Wallace Inn of Court 2005-present
Member, Fish & Richardson Management Committee 2005-2008, 2016 – present
Member, Lawyers Club of San Diego, 1978 - present

Other Distinctions


Ms. Brooks has been honored for her successful trial career, superior legal skills and numerous contributions to the legal profession. Her many recent awards include:

Top IP Lawyers, Daily Journal 2016 – 2020
San Diego Top Lawyers 2020, San Diego Magazine 2020
Patent Litigator of the Year – California, LMG Life Sciences 2019
SD500 Most Influential People in San Diego, San Diego Business Journal 2019
Women Leaders in Tech Law, The Recorder 2019
Best Lawyers in America 1983 – 2021
National Women In Law Lifetime Achievement Award, Corporate Counsel 2018
IP Leader, World Intellectual Property Review 2018
Chambers USA Leading Attorneys 2014 – 2019
Chambers Global Leading Attorneys 2020
Super Lawyers 2007 – 2019
Top 10 Female Litigators in the U.S., Benchmark Litigation 2018
Top 250 Women in Litigation, Benchmark Litigation 2012-2015, 2018-2020
Top 250 Women in IP, Managing Intellectual Property 2016 – 2018, 2020
Top 100 Lawyers in California, Daily Journal 2013, 2016 – 2018
Top Women Attorneys, Daily Journal 2014, 2016 – 2018
Life Sciences Star, LMG Life Sciences 2012-2014, 2018 – 2019
Leading Patent Professional in California, IAM Patent 1000 2018, 2020
California State Bar Litigation Section’s Trial Lawyer Hall of Fame 2017
Game Changer, The Recorder 2017
Trademark IP Star, Managing Intellectual Property 2017, 2019, 2020
Influential Woman, Daily Transcript 2017
Winning: High Stakes, Significant Victories, National Law Journal 2016
100 Influential Leaders in San Diego, Daily Transcript 2016
Intellectual Property (IP) Trailblazer, The National Law Journal 2016
Trial Ace, Law360 2015
Litigation Star for California & National Litigation Star Benchmark 2013-2015
Litigator of the Year, American Lawyer 2014
IP Star Attorney, LMG Life Sciences North America 2014
20 Most Influential Women In IP Law, Law360 2014
Client Service All-Star, BTI 2014
San Diego’s Best Attorneys, San Diego Metro 2014
Best of the Bar, San Diego Business Journal 2014


Little Mexican Girl, Art of Trial, & We’re Crying,” Heels of Justice podcast, March 2019

Cross Examining Experts, California Lawyers Association Annual Meeting 2018

Mock Trial Showdown, American Bar Association Litigation Conference 2018

Effective Cross Examination: Case Studies from Recent Trials, Women in Litigation Joint Conference 2017

Recent Flip Flops in IP Law/Legal Ethics and Unclean Hands, LEAD 2017

Critical Issues at the Forefront of the Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology, and Life Sciences Industries, Life Sciences Summit, Berkeley Center for Law & Technology-High Tech Law Institute-Fish & Richardson 2016

Issues and Trends in How Patent Jury Trials are Conducted, NYU Law: Trial by Jury of Patent Cases Conference 2016

Strategy and Tactics from the Grand Masters on Presenting Case Themes, American Bar Association Annual Meeting 2014

Relief: Damages, Injunctions and Compulsory Licenses, Patent Litigation Seminar – Federal Judicial Center 2014


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“I refer to her as the judge whisperer. They will always listen to her. She’s one of the best I’ve seen in front of a judge. She owns that courtroom. She should be anyone’s first choice as a first chair trial lawyer. She could do any type of trial, she’s just amazing.”

“I frequently interacted with Juanita Brooks, who I found to be brilliant.”

“She’s one of the best trial lawyers I’ve ever seen, she’s just exceptional.”

“Juanita Brooks is very highly regarded here. She has very experienced and skilled trial expertise. She has a deep team, and she appropriately delegates to the team. We very much value diversity, as does she.”

— Client testimonials, 2019 Chambers and Partners

“Still at the top of the list is Juanita Brooks, a paradigmatic lead trial lawyer with some of the best narrative skills in the country, sharpened over the course of an incredible 150-plus trials. She is unlimited in terms of her technical range.”

— 2019 IAM Patent 1000

Featured Videos
5 For 5: EMPOWER Series with Women Who Lead | Juanita Brooks

Juanita Brooks Shares Her Thoughts on Working for Fish & Richardson

A Conversation about Diversity

What's trending with Juanita

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August 12, 2020
Fish & Richardson Receives Top “Gold” Ranking from IAM Patent 1000 for National Litigation Practice; National Rankings in the Plaintiff Firm and Prosecution Firm Categories
Press Release
August 11, 2020
Fish & Richardson Featured in Nine Categories of the LMG Life Sciences Awards 2020 Shortlists
Press Release
August 7, 2020
Fish & Richardson Principals Juanita Brooks and Betsy Flanagan Named to 2020 “Top 250 Women in Litigation” List by Benchmark Litigation
Press Release
August 4, 2020
32 Fish & Richardson Attorneys Named 2020 “IP Stars” by Managing Intellectual Property Magazine
June 2, 2020
Fish & Richardson Receives Top “Band 1” National Rankings for Intellectual Property and ITC Practices in Chambers USA 2020
Press Release
May 26, 2020
Juanita Brooks Quoted in Bloomberg Law Article, "Judges Weigh Bigger Rooms, Cleaner Mics as Jury Trials Restart"
Media Mention
May 26, 2020
Juanita Brooks Quoted in The Recorder Article, "Judges Get Creative as Patent Jury Trials Gear Back Up to Resume"
Media Mention
March 18, 2020
Fish & Richardson Receives Top “Band 1” 2020 Rankings for Patent and ITC Practices from Chambers Global
Press Release
March 16, 2020
Three Fish & Richardson Attorneys Named to the San Diego Top Lawyers 2020 List
Press Release
Media Mention
February 11, 2020
Fish Named Law360 Life Sciences Practice Group of the Year
Media Mention
November 19, 2019
Fish & Richardson’s Juanita Brooks Named a Women Leader in Tech Law
Press Release
October 2, 2019
Fish & Richardson Receives Top Firm Rankings from LMG Life Sciences in Four Practice Areas
Press Release
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