Practice Areas & Industries: Hill, Farrer & Burrill LLP


Intellectual Property Litigation Return to Practice Areas & Industries

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Practice/Industry Group Overview

The intellectual property litigation group handles virtually all disputes in this fast changing area of the law. We have successfully represented both plaintiffs and defendants through judgment in patent matters. We have handled cutting edge copyright disputes ranging from litigation over rights in electronic databases to computer software and even disputes over fabric design. We regularly protect our client’s rights in trademark by litigation in both the courts and before the Trademark Trial and Appeal  Board (the TTAB).

Representative Matters

  • Handled numerous adversary proceedings before the TTAB.
  • Successfully represented a manufacturer of halal foods in a challenge to its trademark.
  • Representing a manufacturer of mystical candles in litigation in Federal Court to protect its trademarks.
  • Successfully represented a major producer of salsa in litigation to protect their thermometer trademark.
  • Obtained injunctive relief, and ultimately favorable resolution of an action which accused a client’s competitor of copyright infringement in the format and layout of the structure of a searchable database, while at the same time obtaining summary judgment on the competitor’s antitrust counter-claim.
  • Obtained injunctive relief, and ultimately a favorable resolution of the action for a client in a case involving copyright violations incident to theft of database case. The parties had collaborated on a business venture which required sharing of data for a specific project. We proved that following the project, the contracting party had retained and used our client’s data to fill in gaps in the contracting party’s database.
  • Successfully handled two 146 actions in District Court following decisions by the Board of Patent Interference, wrote the briefs and argued the appeal before the Federal Circuit Court of Appeal
  • Obtained  summary judgment of literal infringement in favor of an inventor on a patent for a commercial product in wide use.
  • Obtained summary judgment in favor of client who was accused of infringement of a patent for a method of searching data, as well as summary judgment on related trade secret and breach of contract claims.
  • Obtained summary judgment on behalf of defendant accused of breaching royalty agreement in connection with licensing of computer “flow charts” underlying regulatory banking software. Decision upheld by United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
  • Represented leading California commercial and residential pest control company in a variety matters, including misappropriation of intellectual property and trade secrets, unfair competition, breach of employment agreement, intentional interference with contractual business relationship and prospective economic advantage, and trade libel. 
  • Represented production company and its principal owner in connection with celebrity’s complaint for statutory and common law right of publicity, negligence, breach of contract, and Lanham Act violation claims. After mediation and extensive subsequent settlement negotiations, obtained highly favorable settlement.
  • Served as lead counsel for plaintiff manufacturer of stainless steel products that were sold to the United States Government for military purposes in an action against a competitor for intentional interference with contract and related business torts. Tried the case to a successful verdict in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California and prevailed on the subsequent appeal before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal.


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