United States: Washington

Firms: litigation

  • Perkins Coie LLP
  • Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Fenwick & West LLP
  • Knobbe Martens
  • Susman Godfrey LLP
  • Dorsey & Whitney LLP
  • Lowe Graham Jones

Firms: prosecution

  • Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Perkins Coie LLP
  • Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Cooley LLP
  • Knobbe Martens
  • Lee & Hayes, PC 
  • BakerHostetler
  • Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP

Firms: transactions

  • Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Knobbe Martens
  • Perkins Coie LLP
  • Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP


What stands out about BakerHostetler’s Seattle lawyers is their worldly sophistication. Michael Swope has abundant high-technology industry experience, having worked in General Electric’s Astro-Space Division and at Apple; Timothy Casey dedicates a significant portion of his practice to advising on global IP and technology policy issues; and Michael Stein is pacing the artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and blockchain fields. They are great examples of the sort of versatile practitioners that BakerHostetler turns out: insightful on all facets of patent practice, they are adept problem solvers.

Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC

There’s nothing that COJK can’t do in patent practice. Its attorney roster is chock-full of seasoned technologists – most of whom have industry experience – and the group is extremely collaborative: everyone supports each other, which elevates the service and paves the way for joined-up solutions. Presiding over the patent group and promoting this connectivity, David Sheldon brings his A-game in the computer science and software fields. His counterparts in the life sciences are George Renzoni, Melissa Nowak and Rhys Lawson, who likewise garner rave reviews. “George has a great intellect and can quickly grasp complex issues and provide clear and concise strategic advice while meeting tight deadlines.” “Melissa is exceptionally responsive, trustworthy, discreet, business minded, cost conscious and reliable. She also has excellent interpersonal skills and a fantastic global network.” “A man of integrity, Rhys has a passion for his craft and cares about the people he works with and represents. A terrific communicator and high-calibre lawyer, he is someone you want in your inner circle.” Unafraid to look at things differently and shift paradigms, COJK is focusing on innovative ways to resolve IP disputes outside the courtroom, with co-managing member John Denkenberger and Brian McMahon spearheading this effort. Clients never complain about their bills, thanks to the efficiency with which the pair secure results. They frequently link up with Brandon Stallman, who has notched up some significant inter partes review victories recently. Deftly harnessing the ensemble’s many talents, Stallman serves as the key relationship partner for several key patrons. Recommended for prosecution, opinions and transactions, Jerald Nagae impresses for his “top-quality work, attention to detail and cost-effectiveness”.

Cooley LLP

Cooley’s local patent group in Seattle is “expanding considerably under Bill Christiansen”. The life sciences transactional supremo runs an operation that “synergises well with his firm’s corporate practice”, making Cooley an essential choice for pharmaceutical and biotechnology patent commercialisation. Adding to its appeal in these industries is the presence of Carol Laherty, whose ability to align patent strategy with business goals is first rate.

Dorsey & Whitney LLP

The trend towards outside counsel consolidation is serving Dorsey & Whitney well. Existing clients are sending it more prosecution work, which speaks to its superior performance and attentive service. Technology companies like to integrate Kimton Eng et al in their harvesting efforts, leveraging the team’s insight into industry trends and keen eye for patenting opportunities. Eng was recently promoted to head of the patent department, having previously co-chaired it with Denver-based Lee Osman, who moves to the firm’s policy committee. Central to Eng’s value proposition is deep-domain technical expertise in the electrical and computer areas – something that appeals to pioneers such as Micron, a producer of advanced memory and semiconductor technologies. The firm has enjoyed a strong year on the contentious front, too, with IP litigation co-chair Geoffrey Godfrey integrating a number of laterals and capitalising on the diversified staffing options available to him. He tends to run teams leanly under a billing-rate structure that allows for senior people to be hands-on. He understands the risks that each case poses and is excellent at dialling up or down his approach accordingly. One of the most seasoned partners in the group is Paul Meiklejohn – in the game for over four decades, he has first-chaired patent infringement litigations in the triple digits.

Fenwick & West LLP

Silicon Valley darling Fenwick & West has been “thinking creatively about how to make prosecution affordable to start-ups and is great at managing costs while still providing a high-quality legal service”. In Seattle, though, it is the litigation practice that commends the firm. Top local advocates Melanie Mayer and David Tellekson have been surging recently, propelled by their success representing Cray at the Federal Circuit: its In re Cray decision set the standard for determining what constitutes a ‘regular and established place of business’ for the purposes of proper venue in patent cases. The conclusion to this came in April 2019, when a district court in Wisconsin, to which the case was remanded, granted summary judgment of non-infringement; San Francisco-based Bryan Kohm put in the argument for Cray on this one. Mayer performs well whatever the technology at issue, but is at her best in the biotechnology area. She co-chairs the life sciences industry group. Gold-ranked trial attorney Tellekson is a veteran of notable campaigns in the life sciences, chemical and medical device industries.

Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP

IP powerhouse Kilpatrick Townsend has a “very steady leader” in Roger Wylie, who is brilliant in his role as firm managing partner. Away from his associated duties, he runs an outstanding software practice that caters to technology industry forerunners innovating in cutting-edge areas such as AI. A sage counsellor, Wyle is “able to find solutions in situations where people are in disagreement”. He collaborates closely with Jesse Bennett, a trusted adviser with sharpened prosecution and portfolio management skills. Immunology PhD Andrew Serafini is the main draw of the local biotechnology and pharmaceutical practice. Both technical specialist and commercial attorney, he knows the business value drivers of these industries and the science that underpins them.

Knobbe Martens

“Knobbe Martens is incredibly impressive from a technical talent standpoint. It has upwards of 180 registered patent attorneys and therefore fields experts in any technical or scientific discipline. The overall quality of lawyer there is really high, too.” Some of the best are based out of Seattle, including Mauricio Uribe, Maria Anderson and Melanie Seelig – “people you can trust with your most strategic cases and be confident of receiving consistently high-quality work and excellent results”. The business-focused Uribe’s 2019 was defined by continued success in software prosecution and portfolio development and the licensing of standard-essential patents. Anderson’s practice in the computer science field remains state of the art. Navigating several sectors with a broad technical compass, Seelig adds value through incisive landscape analyses. Local managing partner Carol Pitzel Cruz, meanwhile, litigates in the pharmaceutical space with poise.

Lee & Hayes, PC 

With several of its individuals receiving lavish praise, commercially oriented IP boutique Lee & Hayes is clearly operating on an elevated strategic plane. Some of the most effusive feedback is reserved for Richard Allen, whose “compassion, dependability, work ethic and professionalism are exemplary”. “He perceives an idea and puts powerful patents on paper in a manner that requires little alteration, saving money for clients. He empowers you to make informed decisions.” He has a background in mechanical engineering; as does Rob Hartman, a “brilliant substantive patent prosecutor who finds unique ways to add business value”. Chemical engineering is the forte of Brett Nelson, “a truly outstanding leader whose efforts to promote entrepreneurial activities are to his great credit”. Life sciences devotee C Rachal Winger is “whip smart, practical, personable and responsive, and connects easily with inventors”. Other key names for the address book include computer science anchors Rob Peck and Bea Koempel-Thomas; and David Divine, a strong all-rounder with diverse industry experience and utility and design patent expertise.

Lowe Graham Jones

A one-stop shop for patent services, IP specialist Lowe Graham Jones is especially admired for its dexterous handling of complex patent litigation. Putting in resonant performances in district courts across the land, as well as at the PTAB and the Federal Circuit, accomplished advocates Mark Walters and Lawrence Graham bring comfort when trouble brews.

Perkins Coie LLP

In Seattle, Perkins Coie is unrivalled for depth in patent practice. It adroitly collates and analyses the wealth of patent-related data now available to help technology companies take the optimal decisions; its devs design custom dashboards for clients which make the management of data and the provision of strategic guidance a simple process. A prime innovator in this regard is “wonderful communicator” Stephen Bishop, who “sees things others don’t, thanks to his years of private practice and in-house experience”. The former Amazon.com associate general counsel is a software and electrical technologies authority. Other leading lights on the high-technology side include Maurice Pirio, whose blockchain and AI understanding is fine-grained; and founder and co-chair of the firm’s 5G industry group Christopher Daley-Watson. There’s a constellation of medical device stars in the Perkins Coie firmament, too: the galactic centre is Paul Parker, with Aaron Poledna and John Wechkin in close orbit. Parker has enjoyed amazing success building strong portfolios for companies that get acquired for immense sums; while chair of prosecution Poledna is another steadfast partner from incubation to exit. In addition to medical devices, versatile portfolio planner Wechkin has a well-founded knowledge of the semiconductor and light-emitting diode processing fields, among others. For world-class representation in patent litigation, you’d be hard pressed to find better than Ramsey Al-Salam and Jerry Riedinger anywhere in the country. “Ramsey has a relaxed but engaging style and you can tell judges enjoy listening to his arguments. When you hear his presentations, you think, ‘Of course, that’s right.’” Riedinger has honed his advocacy skills over nearly four decades and close to 70 patent cases in which he has served as lead counsel. Patent and trade secret litigation is also the metier of Ryan McBrayer. He co-chairs the 5G group with Daley-Watson and is a premier choice in disputes concerning wireless technology. Chun Ng is the person to call for inter partes reviews. The PTAB is a natural home for this 360-degree patent prosecutor, litigator and deal maker.

Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP

Seed IP has all the technical expertise you could ask for and is rich in extremely well-rounded patent strategists, making it the perfect match for technology and life science entities looking to enhance their portfolios and create IP value. The venerable Seattle boutique is distinguished by its proficiency in electrical engineering and life sciences, and has multiple IAM Patent 1000 inductees representing both sides. In high technology, take your pick from Shoko Leek, Brooke Quist, David Carlson, Kevan Morgan and Steven Lawrenz, and emerge with ironclad protection and a clear business path forward. “Shoko is very thoughtful and detail oriented, and excels at complex problem solving”; Lawrenz joined the firm in Summer 2019 after an 18-year partnership stint at Perkins Coie. The top names in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology arenas are Stephen Rosenman, Karl Hermanns and Samuel Webb. Hermanns is a gifted scientist and former post-doctoral researcher at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre; he also spent several years at a biotechnology start-up. Hermanns plays an important strategic counselling role for his early-stage clients. Webb has in-house counsel experience and a business insider’s knowledge of the pharmaceutical industry. Traversing the chemical and mechanical areas, Jeffrey Sakoi is a trusted adviser to players in the energy and medical device sectors.

Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP

For thought leadership on software technology, IP policy and the business of intellectual property, Shook is a must. Bart Eppenauer stands out as one of the most cerebral patent experts in the country: well known for his Microsoft background – he served as chief patent counsel there for more than a decade – he has an exceptionally full-bodied understanding of where patent law has been and where it is going. Subject-matter eligibility continues to be a hot topic, making Eppenauer a hot commodity.

Susman Godfrey LLP

Susman Godfrey’s trial lawyers have a striking ability to weave compelling narratives around complex technology – which they do a stellar job of breaking down for judges and juries. Extremely results focused, it takes many cases on a contingency fee basis and is flexible in negotiating other billing arrangements. In Seattle, Parker Folse III and Genevieve Vose Wallace do more than they need to uphold the firm’s reputation for tenacity and sure-footedness in the courtroom.

Other recommended experts

Frank Abramonte is the full package when it comes to patent procurement, being technically adroit, an excellent draftsmen and a smart business thinker. He co-chairs Cozen O’Connor’s patent prosecution practice. Schwabe Williamson & Wyatt added instant depth to its litigation practice when it brought William Abrams on board in September 2019. Abrams is a heavyweight trial and appellate lawyer with over 30 years’ experience. Formerly director of patent licensing at Microsoft, Neil Calvin is a master of the art of IP commercialisation. He now operates out of his own firm. Larry Harris commands immense respect in the patent world. Having served at Amazon.com as associate general counsel, with responsibility for managing the company’s patent portfolio, the Athorus founder “stands out for his incredible business knowledge and experience”. Polsinelli’s IP growth has certainly attracted attention in many parts of the country – including Seattle, where the addition of Emily Peyser has turned heads. The agile electrical, mechanical and chemical engineer spent the first 18 years of her private practice career at COJK. Michael Rosato is among just a handful of post-grant specialists in Seattle. He leads the USPTO contested proceedings practice at Wilson Sonsini. Patrick Santos is a software authority with extensive engineering experience at Microsoft on his CV. The Han Santos founder plays a quasi-in-house counsel role for clients, which he supports on strategic IP endeavours. Douglas Stewart chairs the IP litigation group at Bracewell. His experience comes from many forums – including the ITC, PTAB and Federal Circuit – so he is well prepared wherever a case leads him. His well-rounded patent expertise stands him in good stead, too. VLP Law Group’s Jim White dispatches computer-related instructions with an assured hand; he has cracked the code when it comes to protecting software patents. Even in Seattle, where many private practice attorneys have in-house backgrounds, Gregg Wrenn stands apart, having worked in five companies, including household names Adobe Systems and Yahoo! The Pragmatica Law partner is a percipient software and internet technology adviser.

Individuals: litigation

  • Ramsey M Al-Salam - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Parker C Folse III - Susman Godfrey LLP
  • Jerry A Riedinger - Perkins Coie LLP
  • David K Tellekson - Fenwick & West LLP
  • William F Abrams - Schwabe Williamson & Wyatt
  • John D Denkenberger - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Geoffrey Godfrey - Dorsey & Whitney LLP
  • Lawrence Graham - Lowe Graham Jones
  • Melanie L Mayer - Fenwick & West LLP
  • Ryan J McBrayer - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Brian McMahon - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Paul T Meiklejohn - Dorsey & Whitney LLP
  • Carol Pitzel Cruz - Knobbe Martens
  • Douglas Stewart - Bracewell LLP
  • Michael Swope - BakerHostetler
  • Genevieve Vose Wallace - Susman Godfrey LLP
  • Mark P Walters - Lowe Graham Jones

Individuals: prosecution

  • Frank Abramonte - Cozen O’Connor
  • Maria Anderson - Knobbe Martens
  • Stephen C Bishop - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Bill Christiansen - Cooley LLP
  • Christopher Daley-Watson - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Kimton Eng - Dorsey & Whitney LLP
  • Bart Eppenauer - Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP
  • Larry Harris - Athorus PLLC
  • Chun M Ng - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Melissa A Nowak - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Paul T Parker - Perkins Coie LLP
  • George Renzoni - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Andrew T Serafini - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Mauricio Uribe - Knobbe Martens
  • Jim White - VLP Law Group LLP 
  • Roger Wylie - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Jesse S Bennett - Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
  • Timothy D Casey - BakerHostetler
  • John D Denkenberger - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • David Divine - Lee & Hayes, PC 
  • Rob Hartman - Lee & Hayes, PC 
  • Karl R Hermanns - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Bea Koempel-Thomas - Lee & Hayes, PC 
  • Carol Laherty - Cooley LLP
  • Steven Lawrenz - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Rhys Lawson - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Shoko I Leek - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Alan Minsk - Lane Powell PC
  • Kevan L Morgan - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Jerald E Nagae - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Brett Nelson - Lee & Hayes, PC 
  • Rob Peck - Lee & Hayes, PC 
  • Emily C Peyser - Polsinelli PC
  • Maurice Pirio - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Aaron Poledna - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Brooke W Quist - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Michael Rosato - Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
  • Stephen J Rosenman - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Jeffrey M Sakoi - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Melanie Seelig - Knobbe Martens
  • David Sheldon - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Brandon C Stallman - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Michael D Stein - BakerHostetler
  • Michael Swope - BakerHostetler
  • Samuel E Webb - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • John M Wechkin - Perkins Coie LLP
  • C Rachal Winger - Lee & Hayes, PC 

Individuals: transactions

  • Maria Anderson - Knobbe Martens
  • Stephen C Bishop - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Neil P Calvin - The Law Offices of Neil P Calvin PLLC
  • David V Carlson - Seed Intellectual Property Law Group LLP
  • Timothy D Casey - BakerHostetler
  • Bill Christiansen - Cooley LLP
  • Christopher Daley-Watson - Perkins Coie LLP
  • John D Denkenberger - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Bart Eppenauer - Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP
  • Larry Harris - Athorus PLLC
  • Jerald E Nagae - Christensen O’Connor Johnson Kindness PLLC
  • Paul T Parker - Perkins Coie LLP
  • Patrick Santos - Han Santos PLLC
  • Michael Swope - BakerHostetler
  • Mauricio Uribe - Knobbe Martens
  • Greg Wrenn - Pragmatica Law LLP