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Author Topic: Anyone thinking IP Law?  (Read 3336 times)

mixer500

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Anyone thinking IP Law?
« on: November 21, 2007, 09:12:23 AM »
Just wondering whether anyone is considering intellectual property law.  Any indications as to the better schools for IP?  I live in NY and plan to stay here so IP could work for me but I don't have a science or tech background. 

Ender Wiggin

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Re: Anyone thinking IP Law?
« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2007, 09:18:04 AM »
Just wondering whether anyone is considering intellectual property law.  Any indications as to the better schools for IP?  I live in NY and plan to stay here so IP could work for me but I don't have a science or tech background. 

You don't have an engineering degree?  What type of IP are you planning to do?

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Re: Anyone thinking IP Law?
« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2007, 09:45:40 AM »
Although a science/tech background is not required to do copyrights and trademarks... most of the firms that handle those areas are going to hire people who can take on the patent office too.
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Ender Wiggin

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Re: Anyone thinking IP Law?
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2007, 09:57:49 AM »
Although a science/tech background is not required to do copyrights and trademarks... most of the firms that handle those areas are going to hire people who can take on the patent office too.

The IP people I work with say that firms were much more interested in their undergrad degree than their law degree.  (Most of them went to T4 with $$ because it just didn't matter.)

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mixer500

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Re: Anyone thinking IP Law?
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2007, 08:22:23 PM »
Well, to start with there is a great deal of intellectual property to be dealt with that isn't pharmaceutical, technical, science-based, etc.  There are, as PennyLane notes, copyrights, trademarks and the like.  My background is deep in entertainment and I do not want to work in entertainment law.  Clearly, there are places to work (Time/Warner, Universal, Viacom, Google, Apple to name a few) that have IP issues on the front burner and are not necessarily going to be concerned if I have an EE or biochem degree.  I do love the idea of approaching my own industry from a different perspective and I believe that my background is strong enough to be taken quite seriously if I go this route.  As a non-trad though, I am just beginning to consider whether IP law would be making the job search more difficult on myself and my family than I'd like it to be. 

Also, I am a Government major and I can think of some lobbying groups and NGO's that might be interested in someone with my skill set.

Thanks for all your comments!

MzBubble

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Re: Anyone thinking IP Law?
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2007, 07:44:46 AM »
Well, to start with there is a great deal of intellectual property to be dealt with that isn't pharmaceutical, technical, science-based, etc.  There are, as PennyLane notes, copyrights, trademarks and the like.  My background is deep in entertainment and I do not want to work in entertainment law.  Clearly, there are places to work (Time/Warner, Universal, Viacom, Google, Apple to name a few) that have IP issues on the front burner and are not necessarily going to be concerned if I have an EE or biochem degree.  I do love the idea of approaching my own industry from a different perspective and I believe that my background is strong enough to be taken quite seriously if I go this route.  As a non-trad though, I am just beginning to consider whether IP law would be making the job search more difficult on myself and my family than I'd like it to be. 

Also, I am a Government major and I can think of some lobbying groups and NGO's that might be interested in someone with my skill set.

Thanks for all your comments!

My spouse plans on attending law school a year or two after I start, and will be going into IP.  He's currently a CTO of an internet registrar/registry, and has worked on international IP issues for years, including writing standards for IP.  Most of his counterparts around the world are already lawyers, many without strong tech backgrounds (like his.)  There are a number of NGOs and government organizations who need IP counsel, from ICANN to the IOC.  Also, many developing countries, as well as indigenous populations, are dealing with IP issues more and more, and so it is, from what I can see, a real growth field. 

Good luck. 

mixer500

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Re: Anyone thinking IP Law?
« Reply #6 on: November 25, 2007, 09:03:36 AM »
I've been researching the bios/CV's of attorneys in some large firms and many of them do not have tech or science backgrounds.  Whether there are ample job opportunities for them or not is another question but I find that there is room in the field for us.

epicac

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Re: Anyone thinking IP Law?
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2007, 05:06:33 PM »

The IP people I work with say that firms were much more interested in their undergrad degree than their law degree.  (Most of them went to T4 with $$ because it just didn't matter.)

Really?  I'm looking at schools now and didn't think my Biomedical Engineering degree and science work background would help all that much, except for maybe in admissions.  Do you mind telling me a little more about your friends' experiences/situations?
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plex

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Re: Anyone thinking IP Law?
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2008, 02:43:31 AM »
This is more second hand information, but I believe biomedical engineers get lumped with the biology students, which sucks because there are a lot of biology students and they usually like them to have more than undergraduate degrees. As to admissions, I can tell you with some certainty that it will not matter for law school admissions what your undergrad degree was, they just care about LSAT and GPA. Some schools will put some weight on URM status, though some do not care a single bit about it.

Karma Sucks

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Re: Anyone thinking IP Law?
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2008, 06:53:40 AM »
I'll be doing IP.  My impression (wife is a patent attorney, west coast, so 2nd hand knowledge) is that the IP field is becoming fairly saturated on the copyright/trademark side of things.  Patent IP outlook is still good, especially with advanced degrees.  For engineering/comp sci stuff an MS is nice, but a BS can get you into the field.  For biotech work the firms really do like PHD's, and a BS is not really useful.  Mixer, the CV's you're seeing reflect that 10 years ago the firms couldn't get many advanced degree tech people and so would hire BS types.  That has changed, unfortunately. 

EDit:  As far as schools go, just go for the best general ranking you can get.  IP rankings don't really matter (except for Boalt, where you get the best of both worlds!)