Rex Hwang, the sole remaining intellectual property partner at Los Angeles-based Glaser Weil Fink Howard Avchen & Shapiro, has joined Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell.
Hwang started working at Jeffer Mangels two weeks ago as a partner in the firm’s litigation department and its patent litigation group. His departure from Glaser Weil follows the retirement in September of former IP practice leader Adrian Pruetz, whose boutique Glaser Weil absorbed in late 2011.
Pruetz was followed out the door by her daughter, Erica Van Loon, who joined Lathrop Gage along with fellow former Glaser Weil partner Andrew Choung, a former head of the firm’s patent and technology practice. Van Loon previously led Glaser Weil’s copyright, trademark and media practice. Hwang called his decision to leave the firm “a good way to get a fresh start.”
“[Jeffer Mangels] has a really strong IP group, I felt like at this point of my career that joining [this firm] would be a better platform for me,” Hwang said.
According to Glaser Weil’s website, the firm no longer has any partners dedicated to IP work, just of counsel Steven Basileo and three associates. Peter Weil, managing partner of the firm, did not return a request for comment on the matter. Hwang said his now former firm does still have work and clients in IP-related areas.
At Jeffer Mangels, Hwang will continue to focus his practice on litigating complex copyright, patent and trademark disputes. Before joining Glaser Weil in 2013, Hwang worked at Newport Beach, California-based Lee, Hong, Degerman, Kang & Waimey. Hwang made partner at Glaser Weil in 2015.
“We are excited to welcome Rex to the firm,” said a statement from Stanley Gibson, chair of Jeffer Mangels’ lateral hiring committee and patent litigation group. “His background in complex litigation matters will enhance the depth and quality of the patent litigation group and he will be an exceptional resource for our clients.”
Hwang has represented a wide range of clients, such as Bally Gaming International Inc.; BEA Systems Inc.; the British Broadcasting Corp.; Fuji Xerox Co. Ltd.; LG Electronics Inc.; Oracle Corp.; SHFL Entertainment Inc.; and Vizio Inc., Jeffer Mangels said. He also has years of experience litigating complex copyright, patent and trademark disputes, handling America Invents Act proceedings before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and counseling clients on IP procurement and development.
“For example, one of the clients I am representing right now is Vizio, and I represented them at [Glaser Weil],” Hwang said. “Coming here made a lot of sense for myself and for that client as well. We can provide top-notch services for rates that are not $1,000 per hour.”
Jeffer Mangels took in $102.5 million in gross revenue in 2017, earning the 119-lawyer firm the No. 192 spot in The American Lawyer’s Second Hundred rankings. This summer, former Jeffer Mangels appellate chair Michael Hassen left the firm to start his own shop in Walnut Creek, California. Jeffer Mangels did hire hospitality and real estate partner Jeffrey Myers earlier this year from Eisner Jaffe, a Beverly Hills-based boutique now known as Eisner.