Theodore C. Max: Lawyer with Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP

Theodore C. Max


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AV® Preeminent

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Experience & Credentials Ratings & Reviews

Practice Areas

  • Entertainment, Technology and Advertising
  • Intellectual Property
  • Fashion, Apparel and Beauty
  • Litigation
  • Emerging Growth/Venture Capital
University Hobart College, B.A., summa cum laude, with high honors, 1980 Rhodes Scholar Finalist, Student Trustee
Law SchoolNew York University School of Law, J.D., 1983 Editor-in-Chief, New York University Review of Law and Social Change, Won NYU Moot Court Competition, Mendes Herschmann Prize
Admitted1983, Massachusetts; 1985, New York


•Chair, Publications Committee, International Trademark Association
•Past Editor-in-Chief, The Trademark Reporter, 1999-2001
•Previous United States Original Articles Editor
•Previous International Original Articles Editor
•SubCommittee Chair, International Annual Review of Developments in Trademark Law and Practice, The Trademark Reporter
•Member, Copyright and Trademark Committee of the Entertainment and Sports Law Committee of the New York State Bar Association and the Federal Bar Council
•Member, Copyright and Trademark Committee of the Entertainment and Sports Law Committee, New York State Bar Association and the Federal Bar Council


Theodore C. Max is a member of the Entertainment, Technology and Advertising and Intellectual Property Practice Groups in the New York office, where he focuses on counseling clients on intellectual property issues and litigation. He is co-leader of the firm's Fashion and Apparel team. Mr. Max combines his skill and experience as a trial attorney with his knowledge of copyright, trademark and intellectual property law in servicing the firm's diverse clientele.

Mr. Max has counseled clients on and litigated numerous cases involving issues on the cutting edge of copyright and trademark law. He has assisted clients in identifying, protecting and preserving their intellectual property assets, including seeking registration of rights in the United States and internationally and taking action against infringements of copyrights, trademarks and trade dress. He also has experience developing and implementing anti-counterfeiting programs and pursuing civil and criminal enforcement remedies. Mr. Max has actively litigated intellectual property issues, as well as licensing and franchise disputes, and the rights of publicity and privacy. He successfully has represented clients in all types of civil litigation, including alternate dispute resolution proceedings and mediation, trials and appeals.


•Intellectual Property Star, Managing Intellectual Property, 2015
•Leading Trademark Professional, World Trademark Review, 2015
•Intellectual Property, Media and Advertising, Legal 500, 2013-2015
•New York Super Lawyer - Intellectual Property Litigation, Super Lawyers, 2008-2015
•Named as one of the Legal Elite Litigation List, Avenue Magazine, 2011


He has counseled representatives of some of the world's finest designers of fashion apparel and accessories with respect to their intellectual property concerns and problems, including Louis Vuitton Malletier, Emilio Pucci, Celine, Donna Karan, Kooba, Tarina Tarantino and Daryl K. In addition, he has assisted such rising stars in the fashion world as Peter Som and Rafe. He also has extensive experience in litigating commercial disputes in New York state and federal courts.

Publications & News


Mr. Max has lectured widely and authored numerous publications.

Authored a chapter in the book, Fashion Law: A Guide for Designers, Fashion Executives & Attorneys, which is entitled Celebrities and Fashion Models: Endorsement and Promotion Agreements.

Coloring Outside the Lines in the Names of Aesthetic Functionality: Qualitex, Louboutin, and How the Second Circuit Saved Color Marks for Fashion, The Trademark Reporter, September/October 2012

Litigating Trademark And Copyright Cases In The Metaverse, The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel, January 25, 2012

Tweet Me! - The Southern District of New York Answers Copyright Questions Raised by Twitter and Twitpuc Use, Terralex's Intellectual Property Newsletter, September 2011

Congress Has Designs For Piracy Prevention Legislation, Daily Journal, August 9, 2011

Charting A Safe Course In The Perfect Storm Of Consumer Privacy Laws, The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel, June 2011

Authored a chapter in the book, Inside the Minds: New Developments in Evidentiary Law in New York, 2011 ed. , Aspatore Publishing, April 2011.

Trademarks in the Veldt: Do Virtual Lawyers Dream of Electric Trademarks? The Trademark Reporter: The Law Journal of the International Trademark Association, Vol. 101, No. 1, January-February, 2011.

Project Runway: The Am Law Daily Edition, The AmLaw Daily, February 19, 2009

House Okays Watered Down PRO IP Act, World Law Media, June 1, 2008

Designer Hotels Are In Fashion: But Care Should Be Taken To Avoid A Major Faux Pas, Hotel Executive.Com, May 1, 2008

When Copyright and Trademark Infringement Goes Online, New York Law Journal, October 29, 2007

When Keywords Trigger Sponsored Links, Be Mindful of WhenU and the Split in the Circuits Before Choosing Your Forum Court, Bloomberg Law Reports, September 10, 2007

Authored a chapter in the book, Intellectual Property Assets in Mergers and Acquisitions, which is entitled Acquisitions and Licensing of Famous Name Trademarks and Rights of Publicity in the United States.

Authored a chapter in the book, Handbook of Fashion Rights, which is entitled Intellectual Property Protection and Fashion in the United States.

Total Recall: A Primer on a Drastic Form of Equitable Relief, published in The Trademark Reporter, in May-June 1994

Dilution Act May Limit Commercial Parodies, published in The National Law Journal

Contributed a chapter in the book, The New Role of Intellectual Property in Commercial Transactions, entitled Available Remedies For Dispute Resolution in International and Domestic Trademark Licenses.

Fashion & Apparel Law Blog Posts
• Will The FTC Issue Native Advertising Guidelines in 2015? May 18, 2015
• There's No Such Thing As a Free Sample, May 18, 2015
• Trending Information: The Connection Between Data Brokers and the Fashion Industry, July 24, 2014
• International Safe Harbor Privacy Compliance: What You Need to Know, July 14, 2014
• Too Good To Be True: FTC's Crackdown On L'Occitane's Body Slimming Almond Extracts, July 11, 2014
• Fur Flies and West Hollywood (“WeHo”) Fur Ban Is Upheld By Federal Court, July 3, 2014
• New Updated FTC Care Labeling Rules: 'Do's and Don'ts,' June 26, 2014
• Second Circuit Digs Its Heels Into Louboutin Dispute; Finds Red Sole Trademark Protectable, But Limited in Scope, September 19, 2012

Intellectual Property Law Blog Posts
• The Innovative Design Protection and Privacy Prevention Act: Will Design Protection Be In Vogue in Congress? September 1, 2010
• What Is the Jurisdictional Pre-Requisite for Copyright Litigation? July 14, 2009
• Joseph Abboud Is Back: Personal Name Trademark Controversy Continues, July 13, 2009
• Second Circuit Resolves Split Between the Circuits Regarding Sale of Keywords to Trigger Sponsored Links and Use in Commerce Under the Lanham Act, April 10, 2009
• Gibson's Patent Action Against Activision Hits Wrong Chord With Court In Guitar Hero Dispute: Summary Judgment Granted, April 10, 2009
• S.D.N.Y Holds eBay Not Liable in Closely Watched Trademark Case, July 14, 2008

Social Media Law Update Blog Posts
• How to Legally Protect Your Brand in the New Millennium, November 16, 2010


•Co-author, The International Comparative Legal Guide to: Copyright 2016 (2nd ed): Chapter 30- U.S.A.

Speaking Engagements

• Designing a Greater System of Protection for Fashion: The Future of Fashion Law, New York University School of Law, February 19, 2015
• Hot Topics for 2013: What You Need to Know to Avoid Fashion Jeopardy? New York, February 13, 2013
•“IP Enforcement and Litigation 2011: Civil and Criminal Update” Practising Law Institute, March 30, 2011


•Accommodating Disabilities with Acumen, Protecting Data with Diligence, and Avoiding Class Actions with Class

Retail Best Practices

September 29, 2015
•ACC-GNY Retail Practice Group Summer Social

2015 Mid-Summer Mingle: Let's Get Mad!

July 28, 2015
•Brand Protection and the Future of Luxury

Third Thursday Emerging Company Webinar Series

via WebEx, July 16, 2015
•ACC-GNY Seminar & Cocktail Reception

Retail Practice Group CLE: Best Practices for Retail Counsel

April 29, 2015
•Facing a Blizzard of Legal Challenges as In-House Counsel

Spring 2015 New York Fashion Week

February 17, 2015
•How to Protect Your Brand

Third Thursday Emerging Company Webinar Series

via WebEx, August 21, 2014
•Crisis Management in the Fashion and Retail Industry

Sheppard Mullin's Fashion Week Seminar

February 18, 2014
•It's All About the Brand!

New York Fashion Week Seminar - Fall 2013

September 12, 2013
•Branding Your Company in the World of Social Media, Instant Celebrity and Virtual Reality

Third Thursday Emerging Company Webinar Series

via WebEx, July 18, 2013
•Breakfast With Your Finance and Bankruptcy Lawyers

Intellectual Property Issues in Bankruptcy: Assumption and Assignment, Distinctions Between Patents, Copyrights and Trademarks, Distressed Acquisitions and How to Protect Your IP

Sheppard Mullin New York, June 11, 2013
•How to Legally Protect Your Brand

Third Thursday Emerging Company Webinar

WebEx, November 17, 2011
•Got GOTS?

Sheppard Mullin, New York, June 28, 2011
•How to Legally Protect Your Brand in the New Millennium

Third Thursday Emerging Company Webinars

WebEx, October 21, 2010
•Digital Media Law Forum: Building Brands In a Digital World

Silicon Valley Bank, 3005 Tasman Dr, Santa Clara, CA 95054, September 22, 2010


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Office Information

Theodore C. Max

New YorkNY 10112


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