Updated October 30, 2020:

Top Patent Law Firms

Top patent law firms are legal firms that exist specifically to handle such matters as litigation and transactional and advisory matters related to patents and are considered to be the highest in rank regarding quality. These patent law firms have impeccable track records helping tech start-ups, leading corporations, and universities take care of matters including licensing, litigation settlement, technology transfer, joint research, and other areas regarding patent protection.

A high quality patent law firm should have extensive experience with patent litigation. This means that they will have a vast amount of experience dealing with infringement cases both on the appellate level and the trial level. These law firms should also be able to prove that they have an influential presence among forums such as the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the International Trade Commission (ITC).

Look for patent law firms with significant experience working on ITC Section 337 cases.

These firms should also employ specialist practitioners with extensive knowledge in IP litigation and ITC regulations.

Working with a top patent law firm is becoming even more important today because complex disputes are being brought to the ITC in higher volumes.

There has been a marked disruption in patent prosecution due to multiple factors including the following:

  • Larger firms putting more competitive pressure on IP boutiques
  • In-house counsel shaping IP priorities
  • Cheaper alternatives to ending patent disputes.

After the introduction of the Defend Trade Secrets Act, the arena of trade secrets has also been largely disrupted.

An Introduction to Top Patent Law Firms

The firms listed below include both non-contentious and contentious expertise.

These legal experts have a comprehensive understanding of everything related to intellectual property, including anti-trust, tech issues, and employment regulations. Advice in the tech realm is even more important today due to the heightened risk of breaches in cybersecurity.

For non-contentious expertise, look for patent law firms that showcase strengths in both transactional and advisory work, as well as portfolio management and prosecution.

The majority of patent law firms included in this article include legal experts with high levels of experience in enforcement work, anti-counterfeiting, cancellations and oppositions, and other administrative proceedings.

The demand for legal expertise related to non-contentious trademarks has been rapidly increasing over the years and any top patent law firm that you work with should demonstrate a profound amount of knowledge in this area.

Reasons for the marked growth in the need for non-contentious trademarks include non-traditional trademark registration and trade dress. Lastly, many top law patent firms consult their clients in the best uses of trademarks in the social media realm.

The Top Patent Firms of 2016

These patent law firms are ranked according to the number of utility patents issued in 2016 and those firms were included on the front of all issued patents. All of these patent firms have secured a minimum of 50 utility patents.

  1. Ropes & Gray LLP
  2. Alston & Bird LLP
  3. Baker & Hostetler LLP
  4. Ballard Spahr LLP
  5. Banner & Witcoff, Ltd.
  6. Barnes & Thornburg LLP
  7. Brinks Gilson & Lione
  8. Cooley LLP
  9. Covington & Burling LLP
  10. DLA Piper LLP
  11. Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
  12. Fenwick & West LLP
  13. Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garret & Dunner LLP
  14. Fish & Richardson P.C.
  15. Fitzpatrick, Cella, Harper & Scinto

The Best Intellectual Property Law Firms by 2018

  1. Fish & Richardson P.C.
  2. Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Carrett & Dunner, LLP
  3. Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP
  4. Morrison & Foerster LLP
  5. Kirkland & Ellis LLP
  6. WilmerHale
  7. Cooley LLP
  8. Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  9. Irell & Manella LLP
  10. Fenwick & West LLP
  11. Latham & Watkins LLP
  12. Perkins Coie LLP
  13. Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  14. Jones Day
  15. Covington & Burling LLP
  16. Orrick, Herrington, & Sutcliffe LLP
  17. Ropes & Gray LLP
  18. Sidley Austin LLP
  19. Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
  20. Alston & Bird LLP
  21. DLA Piper
  22. Baker Botts LLP
  23. Goodwin
  24. Greenberg Traurig, LLP
  25. Foley & Lardner LLP
  26. Winston & Strawn LLP

Need additional information related to finding top patent law firms? Don’t hesitate to post your legal need on UpCounsel’s marketplace. UpCounsel accepts only the top 5 percent of lawyers to its site. Lawyers on UpCounsel come from law schools such as Harvard Law and Yale Law and average 14 years of legal experience, including work with or on behalf of companies like Google, Menlo Ventures, and Airbnb