IPethics & INsights

Blog Authors

Latest from IPethics & INsights

The Covid-19 pandemic and very recent societal upheaval have caused unprecedented times of stress and fear throughout all ranks of the legal profession. These difficult times have especially hit hard those who are in law school and are in the earliest phases of their professional careers. On June 18, 2020, at 1:00 pm ET, a panel of experts will be presenting a 90-minute FREE (to ABA members) webinar. This will be worth your time, so…
On Monday, June 1, 2020, I will be moderating an ethics webinar panel discussion on behalf of the ABA’s Intellectual Property Law Section (for which I serve as Chair of the Ethics and Professional Responsibility Committee). The webinar is entitled “A Look at the USPTO’s Focus on Declarations” and will focus on ethics issues relating to signature practices on trademark and patent filings. Our panelists will address why signatures have become an issue of interest…
These days, it’s good to be a trusts and estates lawyer. While the rest of legal field is scrambling to figure out how to survive the next few weeks and months with little new business coming in and much existing business on hold, attorneys who represent the elderly and infirm report a boom in business. Everyone, it seems, is feeling vulnerable and thinking about their own mortality. How could you not? If it is not…
The Office of Enrollment and Discipline wants registered Patent Agents to know that they cannot practice trademark law. Patent agents are one of the few individuals who are legally authorized to provide legal services without being a member of a State Bar.  Patent agents, like other registered patent practitioners, are authorized to engage in the limited practice of patent law before the USPTO.   Pursuant to federal regulation, a registered patent agent is authorized to “practice…
by Charles Lundberg, Esq. Reprinted with permission. Published March 30, 2020 in Minnesota Lawyer. In a span of less than two weeks, the coronavirus outbreak has caused unprecedented disruption in law firms and created a host of new issues for firm general counsel and ethics partners. Here is a sampling of new ethics and risk management issues that have arisen almost overnight: A new paradigm for civility and reasonableness? Last week, a statement by…
Inequitable conduct is supposed to be personal to each individual who owes a duty of disclosure to the USPTO. Thus, just because an inventor may have knowingly and intentionally lied to the USPTO does not mean that prosecution counsel did so as well. Indeed, most prosecutors are in a position where they must rely upon the apparent veracity of their clients and often do not have the time or resources to independently “verify” or “corroborate”…
On February 25, 2020, Michael E. McCabe, Jr. was quoted in Law360 (including the lead story in IP360 and Legal Ethics360), in an article entitled “$32M Dentons Verdict Could Put Vereins in the Crosshairs“ by Aebra Coe. The Law360 article addresses the ethical risks of the Swiss verein structure as it relates to conflicts of interest. The case involved a claim that Dentons committed legal malpractice arising from an alleged conflict of interest in…
From the now-I’ve-heard-everything category, there is this: A plaintiff in a federal action claims that during the course of a mediation of her employment discrimination case, counsel for the defense–a partner with a major international law firm– allegedly “shook his butt” at plaintiff’s counsel while uttering profanity. Plaintiff demands sanctions of $7,000 for the alleged, er, exposure. For its part, the defendant denies that its (now former) counsel engaged in any such lascivious gyrating of…
While in college, Joe Varsity is arrested for public intoxication. Joe pleads no contest, and the charge is dismissed after he completes an alcohol education class. Joe’s conviction is later expunged (or erased). Under the laws where Joe’s arrest occurred, “any person who shall have been the subject of such an erasure shall be deemed to have never been arrested and may so swear under oath.” Joe’s lawyer tells him that he is “good to…
The USPTO’s Office of Enrollment and Discipline (OED) exists, in large part, to ensure that patent and trademark practitioner are practicing ethically and in accordance with the Office’s Rules of Professional Conduct.  The OED’s staff includes a dozen attorneys, many of whom have practical experience in the area of IP law.  Whether you have been practicing law for many years or are just starting in the field of IP law, here are five things you…