Patent Litigation Certification

The National Board of Trial Advocacy (NBTA) is offering a new certification in patent litigation.

Chief Judge Rodney Gilstrap, who heads the National Board of Patent Litigation Lawyers, a newly created division of the NBTA, says it will provide a “new level of recognition” for patent litigators. “This provides a tangible means of identifying and properly recognizing those lawyers of both proven knowledge and established skill in the development and trial of patent cases,” he said. “There has been a need for this certification for some time. I believe this new level of recognition will serve both the bar and the bench very effectively.”

To be certified, attorneys must meet the requirements of relevant patent experience, pass an examination and satisfy high ethical standards, continuing legal education requirements and peer review. The initial requirements allow applicants to gain credit for different activity related to patent litigation, but in most categories only up to a certain point, and as I count the points, applicants must have been lead counsel in at least three patent jury trials. Bill Lee and Morgan Chu refer to this requirement as “last month.”

The certification lasts for five years, after which the lawyer must seek recertification. The certification can also be revoked at any time for violations of the NBTA’s general principles and standards.