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Kathleen Sullivan of Quinn Emanuel, Urquhart & Sullivan.(Photo: Jason Doiy)

Tell us about your top U.S. Supreme Court or federal circuit court victory over the past year and how you and your team achieved the win. Samsung v. Apple was the U.S. Supreme Court’s first design patent case in over 120 years. To win the case for Samsung, we had to show that Apple was not entitled to Samsung’s total profit on its smartphones based on design patents covering merely narrow, partial features of the phones’ appearance. The easy part was convincing the court that such a result made no sense. The hard part was showing why we were right as a matter of statutory interpretation, which our team did by exhaustive research on Patent Act legislative history, 19th century dictionary definitions, PTO manuals and policy, and the practical consequences of the competing rules.

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Lisa Helem

Lisa Helem is the editor in chief of The National Law Journal. Contact her at lhelem@alm.com. On Twitter: @lhelemNLJ

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