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LES Spring Meeting — Boston, MA – May 19-21, 2010

I will be part of a Workshop entitled “A Shot Across the Bow – The Process Behind the Making and Responding to Demands to License Patented Technology” scheduled for May 21st at 930AM. The other speakers will be Robert Sloss of Farella Braum & Martell, Ted Chan of Biovail and Susan Stoddard of the Mayo Foundation. The short title of this workshop could be “Fending off the NPE’s,” but, of course, not all “license seekers” are Trolls and sometimes, it is better to flee to the shelter of a reasonable license than it is to push your gladiator (read “litigator” ) into the ring.

Schwegman Lundberg & Woessner Ranked High On “Patent Scorecard”

Schwegman Lundberg & Woessner is approaching its 17th anniversary with about 80 attorneys in three offices and 12 satellite locations. The firm has remained unique in both not having a litigation department and in not maintaining a large incoming “foreign” docket. As a result, most of the patents that we draft and prosecute originate with U.S. clients. That leaves us pretty far down on the list of firms when rankings come out based only on total number of attorneys or number of patents issued per year.

However, it was heartening to see the “’Patent Scorecard” published in the April 2010 issue of Intellectual Property Law Today. Schwegman Lundberg & Woessner ranked second of the 25 firms ranked. The rating and ranking system was developed by The Patent Board and “is complied with natively-filed patents, excluding those with a foreign priority…since patents with a foreign priority have usually been drafted according to the requirements of a specific foreign jurisdiction.”

The total Technological Strength Score accorded to a firm was based on metrics named Current Impact, Science Linkage, and Innovation Cycle Time, but you can guess that using “natively- filed” patents as a starting point eliminating the monster patent-issuers like Oblon Spivak, Sughrue, Birch Stewart, and Oliff & Berridge, all of whom obtained over 2000 patents in 2009. So it was particularly gratifying to rank so high on a list mostly made up of older, better known firms, when we “only” issued 808 natively-filed patents in 2009. (Just based on the number of such patents, we were ranked 5th.) Of course, I agree with the summary of the Patent Board: “In this difficult economy, Patent Analytics offer a vital perspective that can help maximize returns on investment for clients and law firms alike.” Write on!


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