The patents: prosecutions (including re-examination and post-grant proceedings) section recommends firms for their breadth and depth of technical expertise in drafting and prosecuting US patents for domestic and international clients.Under the America Invents Act (AIA), ex parte re-examination proceedings, which have unique rules and procedures, remain an important option to consider when challenging the validity of a patent.
The firms listed in the copyright table are assessed on their capabilities across advisory, transactional and litigation matters.
Those firms that do most or all of these things well are ranked highest, although there is also room for specialists with niche expertise.
Uncharted territory at the intersection of copyright and new technologies is fertile ground for the legal market, with clients seeking advice and representation in high-stakes litigation that is often not just bet-the-company but bet-the-industry.
After the 2014 Supreme Court decision against Aereo, and its business model of capturing over-the-air television and retransmitting it over the internet, disputes have intensified over other internet television services; prominent examples are Aereokiller, Dish Network and TVEyes.
Similar disputes exist in the music area, where internet radio service Pandora Media has continued its litigation over royalty rates.
In addition to these and other headline-grabbing first impression cases, there is also a large volume of more traditional copyright work that keeps practices busy.
The patent litigation: full coverage ranking features firms with strong, demonstrable expertise in handling patent infringement cases at both trial and appellate level, and with an active presence before the specialist forums of the International Trade Commission (ITC) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
The number of cases filed has remained steady over 2015, with an increasing emphasis on inter partes reviews as a crucial part of defense litigation strategy; this, along with the increased number of post-Alice motions concerning patentable subject matter, has resulted in the continual decrease in the volume of claims filed by non-practicing entities.
Competitor cases remain prevalent nonetheless, with major companies increasingly seeking protection and enforcement of their patent rights, and the market has seen a significant number of Hatch-Waxman cases related to the production and marketing of generic drugs.