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Patrick J. McElhinny

Fax +1.412.355.6501
Mr. McElhinny is a partner in the firm’s Pittsburgh office. He handles major patent cases involving various technologies. He co-led the team that won 2012’s largest verdict in the U.S. as reported by the National Law Journal. The $1.5 billion judgment in favor of Carnegie Mellon University was one of the largest ever in a patent case. The Pittsburgh Business Times published the linked profile of Mr. McElhinny and his work on the Carnegie Mellon case. Mr. McElhinny also has litigated cases involving trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, non-competition agreements and other complex commercial disputes. Those cases often involved claims for preliminary injunctive relief. He has 30 years of trial experience and is registered to practice before the USPTO.

Professional Background

Partner, associated with K&L Gates since 1988. Since 2006, Chambers and Partners has ranked Mr. McElhinny annually as a leading lawyer in intellectual property litigation in its Chambers USA Guide. Super Lawyers Magazine and Best Lawyers have recognized him annually for Pennsylvania intellectual property litigation. He also has been recognized, as one of Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America for 2012, as Outstanding Pennsylvania IP Litigator in 2014 by Managing Intellectual Property and twice as Litigator of the Week by The AmLaw Litigation Daily.

Professional/Civic Activities

  • Master, Intellectual Property Inn of Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
  • Graduate of Leadership Pittsburgh, Class XXVI
  • Member of Steering Committee of K&L Gates Trial Academy
  • Former Hiring Committee Chair and Pro Bono Coordinator, Pittsburgh Office of K&L Gates

Speaking Engagements

  • Panelist, Lessons for Technology Managers from the Front Lines of Litigation, Association of University Technology Managers, February, 2018
  • Panelist, Current Trends in Litigation Finance, January 2018
  • The Billion Dollar Verdict in Carnegie Mellon University v. Marvell Technology Group, Pittsburgh Intellectual Property Lawyers Association, January 2017:
  • Keynote Speaker, 2014 Federal Circuit Bar Association Advanced Complex Patent Litigation Series, Western District of Pennsylvania, March 2014
  • Speaker on Patent Law, Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Internet Law Update, April 2014
  • US Supreme Court's Decision Limits Patent Owners from Claiming Infringement by Downstream Customers, BNA World Intellectual Property Report, July 2008
  • Speaker, Insurance Coverage For Intellectual Property Disputes, Washington State Bar Association, March 2007
  • Speaker, Discovery Issues in Patent and Trademark Cases, ABA, Section of Intellectual Property Law, April 2005 and 2006
  • Speaker, Preliminary Injunction Proceedings in Pennsylvania State and Federal Courts and Roadmap to a Litigation Matter (firmwide internal presentations)

Additional Information

  • "Insurance Coverage for Natural Resource Damages Claims: Fundamental Principles and Litigation Strategies," presented at a conference entitled “Natural Resource Damages Claims and Litigation,” April 1991
Patent Cases
  • On behalf of Carnegie Mellon University, Mr. McElhinny co-led the team that won one of the largest patent judgments in history in an action against Marvell Technology Group. The technology involved was digital signal processing for computer hard drives.
  • Also on behalf of Carnegie Mellon University, Mr. McElhinny and his team successfully defended two reexaminations in the Patent and Trademark Office that challenged the patentability of the claims asserted in the CMU v. Marvell litigation.
  • Mr. McElhinny led a team that won a multi-million jury verdict on behalf of a private company that develops software for and hosts computer-mediated auctions for financial and legal instruments (on-line auction methods).
  • On behalf of a publicly traded specialty metals company, Mr. McElhinny prosecuted claims of patent infringement for patents covering nickel-based superalloy ingots and settled that case in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania favorably after winning summary judgment on the opposing party’s antitrust claim.
  • On behalf of Louisiana State University won dismissal of an inventorship claim.
  • Represents the University of Minnesota in district court litigation and related IPR involving technology for computer hard drives.
  • Represents Carnegie Mellon University in district court litigation asserting patents relating to digital signal processing for computer hard drives.
  • Secured a favorable settlement for a leading provider of information security awareness and training software in a multi-patent competitor case. Shortly thereafter, client was acquired for $225 million.
  • Secured a favorable settlement for a Fortune 100 Company in multi-patent competitor case involving bar code scanning technology.
  • Mr. McElhinny has litigated other major patent cases involving a broad array of technologies and claims for hundreds of millions of dollars in damages. For example, Mr. McElhinny has pursued patent infringement claims on behalf of a publicly traded manufacturer of semiconductor processing equipment (high energy ion implanters). He has defended a claim for $50 million on a patent for power converters and a multi-patent suit involving computer networking equipment and a damages claim for $150 million. He has defended numerous patent cases for a publicly traded entertainment company. Mr. McElhinny also has handled patent cases involving megasonic cleaning of silicon wafers, PVC pipe connections, personal watercraft docking systems, magnetic media for information storage, medical devices and methods for cleaning contaminated groundwater.
Trade Secret, Non-Competition, Trademark And Copyright Cases
  • Mr. McElhinny has handled many trade secret, trademark and copyright cases, as well as cases arising out of non-competition agreements. These cases often involve claims for preliminary injunctive relief. The information at issue includes: software for optimization of purchasing decisions; steel mill equipment; business information and software for industrial coatings, transportation, medical waste disposal and list compilation businesses.
Complex Commercial Litigation
  • Counsel for a major state university in a confidential mediation that resulted in the largest one time payment for technology transfer in its history.
  • Trial counsel for policyholders seeking hundreds of millions of dollars in coverage for underlying securities and environmental claims.
  • Trial counsel for oil and gas company and obtained preliminary injunction enforcing letter of intent for lease of property for corporate headquarters.
  • Trial counsel to list compiler in numerous commercial and regulatory actions.