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   Author  Topic: Patent Law Employment Future  (Read 3900 times)
Portland Patent Lawyer
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Re: Patent Law Employment Future
« Reply #5 on: Jul 11th, 2006, 9:03pm »
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Definitely do some research.  Like Isaac said, the job market is not nearly as good as what it was before the bubble.
 
This will take a little time, but I would suggest doing the following ... go to this page and do a search for "Portland" (or "Seattle")
 
http://des.uspto.gov/OEDCI/index.jsp
 
This will bring up all the registered patent attorneys practicing in Portland.  For each attorney, go to their firm's web site and see what their background is.  Try to find a Seattle U graduate with a BSEE (and no MS) who graduated on or after 2002.  Once you find one, give them a call and ask them how tough it was to get a job.  Also, check to see if their last name is the same as one of the partners at the firm.
 
Alternatively, you can go to this page and find all the firms practicing intellectual property law in Portland.  
 
http://www.martindale.com/Intellectual-Property/Oregon/Portland/1426-LL2 /firms.html
 
Then you can go through the attorney profiles at each firm until you find one with a background similar to yours.
 
You can also find salaries for the firms which pay the best here:
 
http://www.infirmation.com/shared/insider/payscale.tcl?state=OR
 
My impression of the northwest patent law market is that it is tight and is likely to stay tight.  I think you either need an MS, a top-50 law school, or really good grades (top 15%) at a lower-ranked school to get a job right out of law school.  Even at a lower-ranked school, it takes a lot of work to achieve that high of a ranking.
 
If you go to Seattle U and aren't able to finish in the top 10% or 15%, then you will likely face a tough job search.  Your only option may be to go to a better market (like California) for a couple of years to get experience and then lateralling back to the Northwest.  If you do poorly in law school (say bottom 40%), you may not be able to get a job in patent law at all even if you expand your search to include every intellectual property law firm in the country.  
 
Just take a look at the profiles of the associates at Klarquist Sparkman, one of the largest IP boutiques in Portland, to get an idea of the credentials you will need.  You will see a lot of top-50 law schools, a lot of "cum laude" graduates, and a lot of advanced degrees.  
 
http://www.klarquist.com/bios.aspx?Search=True&Title=1
 
Definitely, definitely do your research now before you spend a lot of money on law school.   You can make good money in patent law, but you need the right set of credentials to get in the door.
 
One more thing, you may notice that the partners typically do not have the same stellar credentials as the associates.  This is a reflection of how much more competitive the patent law job market is today as compared to 10 to 20 years ago.
 
In all sincerity, good luck with whatever you choose to do.
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guest
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Re: Patent Law Employment Future
« Reply #6 on: Jul 15th, 2006, 3:43pm »
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Go to law school.
 
The market isn't that tight at least around major cities (I'm in NYC).  I know people with just a BS in non-EE and CS majors and they found a job.  The market is even better for EE and CS.
 
You might need stellar credentials if you want to work at a big firm, but who wants to work 70 hours a week anyway.
 
Also, the market is centered around big cites and development areas (e.g., NYC, Palo Alto, and the development triangle), so the market might be relly difficult outside those areas.
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john j
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Re: Patent Law Employment Future
« Reply #7 on: Jul 18th, 2006, 1:24pm »
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So I am going to attend Seattle U for law school.  I worked this last year as a contractor doing Software testing and am ready to go back to school (very bored with work and very ready to return).
 
I'm ready to work I disagree off and hope for the best.  I did not get into the University of Washington, but I got a pretty damn good scholarship at Seattle U (as long as i keep my grades up---even more of an incentive i guess).  
 
Obvioiusly an intership after my first or second year will boost my chances of a job out of law school so I will try as hard as i can to get one.  I am positive that if I get an internship i will be well-liked by the firm and do good work.  I hope this will turn into a job.  I guess I'm taking a little bit more of a chance in attending a lower ranked school, but hey, maybe I'll help boost their rankings, j/k.  
 
Any more advice or is there anybody out there who wants to interview me for an intership for next summer?  Portland Patent Lawyer--I am positive I'd make a great attorney and employee so keep me in mind if your firm wants a first year intern Smiley.  And thanks for all those useful links.  I'm researching as I type and am finding some comforting info.
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