Tell us about your practice.
I am first and foremost a litigator. I handle all manner of intellectual property and technology disputes. My cases usually center on trademark, copyright, patent, trade secret and privacy issues (such as defamation and false light). I also counsel clients with business advice in these areas. I love that these cases often have injunction proceedings, which allows a fast and furious hearing in front of a judge, something we don’t get to do that often in other types of cases.
What is an interesting trend happening right now related to your field of practice?
The biggest news lately in IP litigation is the Supreme Court recently changed the long-standing rules on venue for patent cases. Previously, plaintiffs could sue a defendant anywhere the defendant made sales. This resulted in a disproportionate number of cases being brought in the plaintiff-friendly forum of the Eastern District of Texas. After the Court’s recent decision in TC Heartland v. Kraft, an alleged infringer must be sued where it is incorporated and where it has committed alleged acts of infringement and has a regular, established place of business. This holding should give more geographic diversity to patent law by spreading the cases more evenly among the circuits but, as a practical matter, will probably result in moving a large cases to Delaware, where most companies are incorporated. This decision is seen by some as a further erosion of the rights of patent owners and evidence of an overall trend in weakening patent rights in the United States over the last several years. On the other hand, the defense bar heralds the change, arguing that it reduces the cost of defense for companies and puts much needed controls on “patent trolls.”
Why did you choose to pursue a career in the legal field?
I had an Uncle, Bill Redick, who practiced law in Nashville for many years representing death row inmates and working tirelessly in opposition to the death penalty. I was always fascinated by his passion and how each case had a unique and important story that it was the lawyer’s job to discover and tell. Although my practice is very different from his, he inspired me to pursue law and to care deeply about my clients and telling their stories.