Allen M. Sokal

Counsel

Washington, D.C.
T +1.202.861.1539
F +1.202.861.1783

Overview

After serving as a patent examiner for five years and clerking for Judge Jack Miller on the United States Court of Customs and Patent Appeals for two years, Allen Sokal entered private practice in 1976. He practices patent litigation, with a particular concentration in appellate practice in the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Although Allen’s district court litigation experience has focused primarily on the pharmaceutical and chemical fields, throughout his career Allen has handled appellate cases in an array of technologies. He has briefed and argued more than 50 cases at the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and other regional circuits, and has been retained as a patent law expert witness in infringement suits. Allen has lectured extensively throughout the world on patent law, licensing, and legal ethics issues for bar organizations and clients, as well as on chemical patent practice for the Patent Resources Group and C5. Allen is also on the American Arbitration Association's list of neutrals.

Select Experience

  • Represented a client in a multibillion-dollar patent litigation involving the fan stages of jet engines. Rolls-Royce Plc v. United Technologies Corporation (E.D. Va.). The court granted summary judgment in favor of the client, finding noninfringement.
  • Represented a client in the Federal Circuit appeal of an International Trade Commission (ITC) ruling of noninfringement by the client's cellular telephones. In re Certain 3G Mobile Handsets and Components, 337-TA-613 (ITC). The Federal Circuit reversed the noninfringement ruling. 
  • Represented patent owners in a case involving the blood-thinner Lovenox®. Aventis Pharma S.A. v. Amphastar Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (C.D. Cal. and Fed. Cir.).
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Experience

  • Represented a client in a multibillion-dollar patent litigation involving the fan stages of jet engines. Rolls-Royce Plc v. United Technologies Corporation (E.D. Va.). The court granted summary judgment in favor of the client, finding noninfringement.
  • Represented a client in the Federal Circuit appeal of an International Trade Commission (ITC) ruling of noninfringement by the client's cellular telephones. In re Certain 3G Mobile Handsets and Components, 337-TA-613 (ITC). The Federal Circuit reversed the noninfringement ruling. 
  • Represented patent owners in a case involving the blood-thinner Lovenox®. Aventis Pharma S.A. v. Amphastar Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (C.D. Cal. and Fed. Cir.).
  • Represented the patent owners in a case concerning the antidepressant Prozac®. Eli Lilly and Company v. Barr Laboratories, Inc. (S.D. Ind. and Fed. Cir.). The Federal Circuit upheld the client’s basic patent and held a later patent invalid for double patenting.
  • Represented a pharmaceutical company in suits filed against Abbreviated New Drug Applications (ANDA) applicants.
  • Represented a client as amicus curiae before the United States Supreme Court. Samsung Electronics Co. v. Apple Inc. (S. Ct.).
  • Represented the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America as amicus curiae before the United States Supreme Court. KSR International Co. v. Teleflex & Technology Holding Co. (S. Ct.).
  • Represented a client in the Federal Circuit appeal of a willful infringement ruling. Innovention Toys, LLC v. MGA Entertainment, Inc. The Federal Circuit reversed the willful infringement ruling. The Supreme Court subsequently vacated and remanded the case for further consideration in view of its ruling in Halo Electronics, Inc. v. Pulse Electronics, Inc. (2016).
  • Represented a client as amicus curiae before the en banc Federal Circuit and orally argued after taking the position (lack of subject matter jurisdiction) that neither party was asserting. In re Alappat (Fed. Cir.).

Recognitions and Memberships

Recognitions

  • Managing Intellectual Property: IP Star (2013 to 2015)
  • The Best Lawyers in America© (2008 to Present)
    • Washington, D.C.: Litigation – Intellectual Property
    • Washington, D.C.: Litigation – Patent
  • Washington, D.C. “Super Lawyer” (2009 to 2010, 2013 to 2019)

Memberships

  • Federal Circuit Bar Association: Member
    • Bench Bar Conference Planning Committee (2014)
    • Hutchinson Writing Competition Committee
      • Vice Chairman (2016)
      • Chairman (2015)
      • Co-Chairman (2013 to 2014)
  • American Bar Association
  • American Intellectual Property Law Association
    • AIPLA Quarterly Journal, Editorial Board: Member (2010 to 2013)
  • Giles S. Rich American Inn of Court

Community

  • The Choral Arts Society of Washington

Pro Bono

  • Depth of experience handling pro bono asylum cases, including initiating and administering an extensive law firm asylum program. 

Prior Positions

  • Technical Advisor and Law Clerk for the Honorable Judge Jack R. Miller, United States Court of Customs and Patent Appeals (1974 to 1976)
  • United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO): Patent Examiner (1968 to 1973)

Admissions

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Registration No. 26,695
  • District of Columbia
  • Virginia

Education

  • J.D., Georgetown University Law Center, 1972
  • B.S., Chemical Engineering, University of Pennsylvania, 1968, cum laude

Blog

In The Blogs

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IP Intelligence: Insight on Intellectual Property
IPO's "Gender Diversity in Innovation Toolkit" Aims to Address Disparities in Inventorship
By Lesley M. Grossberg
November 14, 2019
While women are awarded 53% of PhDs, they accounted for only 12% of named inventors on U.S. patents granted in 2016. Fewer than 30% of Patent Cooperation Treaty applications name a woman inventor. After the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office...
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IP Intelligence: Insight on Intellectual Property
The theory of “trademark neutralization.” What is it and will it likely be adopted in the US?
November 11, 2019
Have you heard of the theory of “trademark neutralization?” It was developed by the European Union (EU) General Court and the European Union Court of Justice (“CJEU”) in 2006 (Case No. C-361/04 (ECJ Jan. 12, 2005)) holding PICASSO/PICARO...
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IP Intelligence: Insight on Intellectual Property
Supreme Court to Consider Patent Laches in Wake of Copyright Laches Decision
By Allen M. Sokal
May 17, 2016
When we last discussed patent laches here, the Federal Circuit had voted to rehear, en banc, SCA Hygiene Products’ patent infringement claim, which invoked a laches defense. At that time, the Supreme Court had recently decided in Petrella...
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IP Intelligence: Insight on Intellectual Property
Federal Circuit Denies Rehearing on Whether Section 337 Includes Digital Imports
By Allen M. Sokal
April 8, 2016
The Federal Circuit debate begun in Suprema, Inc. v. International Trade Commission, 796 F.3d 1338 (Fed. Cir. 2015) (en banc), continued with the court’s denial of rehearing en banc in ClearCorrect Operating, LLC v. International Trade...
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IP Intelligence: Insight on Intellectual Property
Federal Circuit Judge Bryson Denies Motion to Disqualify Plaintiff’s Counsel
By Allen M. Sokal
March 3, 2016
Providing a rare glimpse into a Federal Circuit judge’s views on the rules of professional conduct governing conflicts of interest, on February 26, 2016, Federal Circuit Judge William Bryson, sitting as a trial judge, denied a motion to...
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