Trademarks, Copyrights, Trade Secrets and Unfair Competition

Our Intellectual Property attorneys assist clients in obtaining trademarks and copyrights, perform searches and render registrability opinions. Duane Morris has been repeatedly ranked among the top trademark filing law firms by Trademark Insider, IP Today and IP Law360. We file and maintain thousands of applications to register trademarks, current trademark registrations and copyrights each year in the U.S. We also coordinate with our international networks of law firms to file and maintain thousands of trademark applications and registrations throughout the world. We offer our clients technology solutions for real-time trademark docket management through the Duane Morris IP Portal, giving clients anytime/anywhere access to information on their IP holdings, including status updates on filings and alerts to upcoming deadlines.

We help clients establish, enforce and challenge trademark rights, both in the United States and abroad. We also counsel clients in trade dress and unfair competition matters under Section 43(a) of the Lanham Act as well as matters involving both IP and antitrust laws such as tying arrangements and covenants not to compete, and disputes regarding publishing rights and piracy.

Our IP trial lawyers litigate trademark claims in federal courts throughout the country, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board and the International Trade Commission. We have recovered thousands of domain names from cybersquatters and we counsel clients on domain name strategies, domain name acquisition and the protection of IP rights on the Internet, including through international proceedings of ICANN and WIPO. Duane Morris is a registered trademark agent with ICANN's Trademark Clearinghouse (TMCH), a global repository of validated trademarks. Our attorneys can help clients register their trademarks with TMCH to protect their intellectual property with regard to domain names and brand identity. Our attorneys also have significant experience with pharmaceutical trademark and trade dress matters.

In trademark litigation, we focus on protecting the goodwill and brand value that our clients have worked to develop through their trademarks and trade dress. Our attorneys handle an array of trademark, trade dress and unfair competition disputes, including those concerning consumer product trademarks, business names, trademark dilution, trademark counterfeiting, false advertising, and clothing and accessory designs and other forms of trade dress.

We often represent copyright owners in actions against people and businesses that sell infringing items. Similarly, we represent composers, authors, software developers and publishers in protecting their copyrighted works against unauthorized copying, distribution and performance. Our lawyers have obtained ex parte orders to seize counterfeit goods under both the copyright and trademark laws.

Our IP lawyers regularly counsel clients about beneficial strategies to protect their trade secrets and represent them in disputes involving alleged misappropriation of confidential information. Because we are a full service firm, our IP lawyers work with our employment lawyers to draft employment contracts to ensure the protection of corporate-owned trade secrets. Our knowledge of trade secret law enables us to give clients the information and tools they need to safeguard their valuable intellectual property assets.

Our attorneys have handled trade secret litigation concerning a range of diverse technologies, prosecuting and defending claims of trade secret misappropriation in both state and federal courts across the country.

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Diversity

"In my discussions with Duane Morris leaders, they frequently speak about how diversity within their firm has enabled them to better serve their diverse clients. They understand that investing in diversity is a wise business decision that positions them for the marketplace of the future."

Don Liu
Senior VP, General Counsel & Corporate Secretary
Xerox Corporation

At Duane Morris, achieving diversity is paradoxical. By supporting and celebrating the differences of our attorneys - and the individual strengths that they bring - our firm culture expands, fostering creative solutions for our clients. But diversity at Duane Morris does not mean that we have a certain number of diverse attorneys; true diversity means that it is no longer noteworthy to see diverse lawyers leading our practice groups or managing client relationships. Ascending to positions of leadership and greater responsibility and providing the highest levels of client service is simply what is expected of all our lawyers. Diversity is another strong asset that adds to our collective abilities to meet the needs of our clients.

Our vision of diversity at Duane Morris is to realize an environment in which our lawyers' outstanding qualities are not just measured by ethnicity, race, gender and sexual orientation, but more importantly, that our lawyers are remarkable as excellent attorneys above all else. Only then can we celebrate our differences while focusing on the common pursuit of legal excellence which everyone shares at Duane Morris.

To reach this goal, Duane Morris understands that the familiar diversity strategies and policies that most law firms have are needed. Without demanding results from such policies, most law firms are bound to fail in even achieving numerical hiring and retention goals. Duane Morris has been proactive and ambitious in its efforts to improve diversity at the firm, and has set deadlines for reaching the milestones which mark our progress. To create a more diverse law firm, Duane Morris is:

  • Committed to strategically increasing our diversity levels, which is currently at 10 percent.
  • Bringing together our Diversity Committee and our Hiring and Retention Committee to raise diversity as an important factor in our hiring decisions.
  • Dedicated to improving retention by building upon our monitoring and mentoring program for all diverse associates.

Combining new initiatives with our longstanding diversity efforts, Duane Morris has seen increasingly positive results. In the Minority Law Journal's annual diversity survey of the nation's largest 260 firms, Duane Morris continued to improve its regional and national ranking, rising to number 136 of all firms surveyed. Our strides in Philadelphia are encouraging; in a city known for both the racial diversity of its population and the lack thereof in its law firms, Duane Morris is one of only two law firms to exceed the national average of minority partners at all law firms. Additionally, Duane Morris leads all national law firms based in Philadelphia in the number of Latino partners. Nearly 30 percent of all of our attorneys are women, and more than 20 percent of our partners are women.

In our approach to diversity, progress in racial, gender and cultural diversity cannot be measured in numbers alone. Duane Morris has focused our diversity initiatives on both increasing the number of diverse associates and addressing the challenges diverse attorneys face in building lasting careers and rising to senior and leadership positions. While several of our key practice groups are led by diverse partners and female partners, Duane Morris endeavors to create a culture which will foster a deep pool of such attorneys who can then develop into the firm's future leaders. Duane Morris understands that simply hiring diverse associates will not change the diversity of the firm; Duane Morris is working to mentor and retain diverse associates so that our progress in racial, gender and cultural diversity is also reflected at the highest levels of leadership within the firm.

Our progress on gender diversity has been profound. We have no glass ceilings: women hold positions of leadership at all levels of management at the firm. Women lead a number of our key practice groups, including our Energy, Immigration and International practices, and serve on the firm's Executive Committee. The success of our female attorneys at Duane Morris has not gone unnoticed. Barbara Adams was chair of the firm's Finance Practice until her appointment by Pennsylvania Governor Edward Rendell to serve as General Counsel of the Commonwealth. In 2004, our longtime General Counsel, Gene E.K. Pratter, was approved by the United States Senate and is now a judge for the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

Our efforts to improve diversity extend beyond our firm's walls. The chair of our Diversity Committee, Nolan N. Atkinson, Jr., recognized the lack of diversity in Philadelphia's legal community and formed the Philadelphia Diversity Law Group. Nolan now serves as the chair of the organization, a consortium of 25 law firms and corporations that commits to employing at least one diverse first-year law student each as a summer associate. From this program, law students of diverse backgrounds gain access to what was once an exclusive legal community, and now have the opportunity to learn and develop their legal careers with experience at Philadelphia's top law firms.

In addition to our involvement in the Philadelphia area, Duane Morris has increased our presence at national conferences and events focused on diversity. We sponsor the Hispanic National Bar Association and its job fair. Duane Morris is also a longtime supporter and sponsor of the Equality Forum, a national gay and lesbian rights organization. Duane Morris continues to sponsor the Minority Corporate Counsel Association, and is active in other associations of diverse attorneys including: the Asian American Bar Association of the Delaware Valley; the Charles Houston Bar Association; Cuban Bar Association; Korean American Lawyers Association; National American Indian Housing Counsel and the National Bar Association.

The challenge of improving gender, ethnic and cultural diversity at Duane Morris is an ongoing effort that has the support of the entire firm. Duane Morris has been at the vanguard in supporting gender diversity throughout the firm beginning a generation ago. Our diversity programs are leading to similar success in improving racial and national origin diversity at Duane Morris. But even as we share these examples of Duane Morris attorneys and our involvement in numerous legal events, associations and programs for diversity, our hope is that such examples will no longer be necessary to mention in the future. We hope that through our efforts, and the efforts of other law firms, these stories become so common that they are no longer the remarkable accomplishments they are today, but simply routine aspects of the legal world tomorrow.