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Patent Litigation - Appeals

A strong and experienced advocate on appeal

Finnegan attorneys have briefed and argued more cases before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit than any other law firm. The cases have covered a wide range of industries and issues that require meticulous attention to the details of the technologies involved and that demand a thorough understanding of appellate law, Federal Circuit practice, and the strategies necessary for victory. Our success in these cases derives from the firm’s singular focus on intellectual property (IP) law, the technical backgrounds of our attorneys, and their particular experience directly related to appellate practice. Knowing Finnegan’s reputation, both appellants and appellees seek our advice and representation.

Concise, accurate, and powerful arguments

Appellate cases are a highly specialized area of patent litigation. Finnegan is widely known for the quality of its briefs and oral arguments. Our comprehensive understanding of the technology and the law allows us to quickly identify the one or two arguments with the most promise to persuade. Our experience before the Federal Circuit helps us craft concise and persuasive arguments for our clients. With only one or two briefs and 15 minutes of oral argument to make your case, Finnegan brings the type of experience that can make all the difference.

Being there when it counts

The appeals process often starts well before the actual filing of the appeal. Clients retain us at the trial stage to help them look ahead at post-trial appeal issues. And in other instances, they retain us after trial to assist with post-trial motions to make sure that issues are properly preserved for appeal. Frequently, we are retained to assess how a case may fare on appeal. This assessment includes analyzing the patent(s), the lower court’s opinions, and other significant rulings; identifying the strongest issues for appeal; and advising on how to best present and argue the issues.

A long history of insight into the Federal Circuit

Finnegan has had a close and lasting involvement with the Federal Circuit and its predecessor courts. More than 40 of the firm’s attorneys have served as judicial law clerks to judges on the Federal Circuit or its predecessor courts. As clerks, they worked closely with the judges, helping to draft opinions and gaining insight into the deliberative process and protocol of the court. In addition, several of our attorneys have served in leadership roles on the court’s Advisory Council. They also helped found the Federal Circuit Bar Association, an organization in which many of our attorneys actively serve on committees and in leadership positions. Other Finnegan attorneys coauthored the leading treatise on Federal Circuit practice, Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit—Practice and Procedure, published by Matthew Bender.

Experience at the highest level of IP appeals

In recent years, the U.S. Supreme Court has taken a greater role in shaping IP law. Finnegan’s extensive appellate experience has led parties to turn to Finnegan attorneys in many important IP cases. Finnegan has represented both petitioners and respondents before the Supreme Court and has assisted amici curiae in filing briefs at both the certiorari and merits stages. Our attorneys have participated in briefing more than 50 cases, and they have argued several cases before the Court, including the landmark cases Bilski v. Kappos and Bonito Boats v. Thunder Craft Boats.

  • Briefed and argued more Federal Circuit cases than any other law firm 
  • Appeared in 100+ Federal Circuit cases in the last five years 
  • More than 40 former law clerks from the Federal Circuit or its predecessor courts 
  • 30 Finnegan lawyers with experience arguing before the Federal Circuit

Our success in upholding and reversing judgments that can threaten the very existence of a company derives from the specialized focus of our practice, the combined technical and legal backgrounds of our attorneys, and our particular experience in appellate practice.” –Mike Jakes, former chair of Finnegan’s appellate practice and former CAFC law clerk

Drafting a brief for the Federal Circuit is an important and intense process. You have a short period of time to identify and then capitalize on one or two key arguments from highly complex litigation that may have spanned several years. We have the technical expertise and experience before the Federal Circuit to zero in and get it right. This makes a critical difference for our appellate clients.” –Kathleen A. Daley, partner in Finnegan’s appellate practice and former CAFC law clerk