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Change of Pace — Law Firms Hiring, not Firing

published November 14, 2008

( 7 votes, average: 3.6 out of 5)
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11/14/08

Some areas of law have suffered a great deal in the tumultuous economy, but some have managed to remain steady and even flourish. Intellectual property is one such field that, according to the article, ''hasn't fallen into the malaise that some areas of law have suffered in the wake of the economic downturn, say law firms that are hiring lawyers to meet demand in the area.''

The NLJ reports Merchant & Gould; Wildman, Harrold, Allen & Dixon; and McAndrews, Held & Malloy are some of the firms that have brought on new team members and attorneys recently in an effort to keep up with demand from clients for counsel and advisement of patents and general counseling. These firms have hired between two and nine attorneys each. That might not sound like many, but in the wake of constant layoffs, it's a breath of fresh air in the legal community.

In reference to the law firms that have made cuts in response to the financial crisis, Merchant & Gould Managing Director Randall King told the NLJ, ''‘So far, we've been insulated from what other law firms are experiencing out there. Generally, I think IP firms are somewhat insulated.'''

Lawyers at these firms believe that, ''Despite the economic pressures, companies want to protect their patents from rivals to ensure the revenue that flows from them. They're also still maintaining defenses against so-called ''patent trolls'' and seeking counseling on other aspects of intellectual property matters,'' said the National Law Journal.

Amy McCormack, who leads the Chicago recruiting firm McCormack Schreiber Legal Search Inc., also spoke to the NLJ and said ''Patent litigation work picked up along with general litigation in the past three to six months, even though intellectual property work generally stayed strong in the past two years while general litigation flagged.''

Companies are apparently not shying away from investment in intellectual property litigation. Intellectual property law concentrates on the legal rights available to creations of the mind, such as musical, literary, and artistic works; inventions; and symbols, names, images, and designs used in commerce, including copyrights, trademarks, patents, and related rights. Under intellectual property law, the holder of one of these abstract properties has certain exclusive rights to the creative work, commercial symbol, or invention by which it is covered.

Correct and proper ownership of intellectual property is very important to companies, because it can directly affect their revenue. In times such as now, ensuring revenue streams are as high as possible is highly important to remain on top and afloat.


( 7 votes, average: 3.6 out of 5)
What do you think about this article? Rate it using the stars above and let us know what you think in the comments below.

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