Erik focuses his practice on intellectual property litigation and counseling at the intersection of technological innovation, industrial design, and brand building. Whether pioneering new strategies for defining and enforcing product configuration trade dress or crafting creative dispute resolutions, Erik thrives on understanding clients’ business goals and solving complex IP problems.
Erik has been a persuasive advocate at trial, on appeal, at the ITC, and in ADR proceedings, representing both plaintiff and defendant perspectives with zeal. He has represented clients in a wide range of industries — from fitness products to architectural lighting, and of varying sizes — from Fortune 100 to sole proprietors. He is recognized as one of the top five best performing attorneys representing patent owners in inter partes review matters in Patexia’s 2019 IPR Intelligence Report.
Transferring his knowledge and passion for IP litigation to others is evident as Erik teaches and serves as an adjunct professor at Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago teaching Patent Trial Practice. He also wrote a course – Trial Practice in the High Technology Courtroom – based on his experiences simplifying complex patent and design issues for judges and juries. In addition to teaching, Erik is a contributing author to the Patent Trial Advocacy Casebook, Second Edition published by the American Bar Association.
Erik worked at the United States Environmental Protection Agency and in the environmental engineering field after earning a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. An Order of the Coif and cum laude graduate of Northwestern University School of Law, Erik was an associate editor of Northwestern’s Law Review, and published his article, “An Economic Justification for a Broad Interpretation of Patentable Subject Matter” in the Law Review’s Spring 2001 volume. Erik is a member of Banner Witcoff’s Marketing Committee, which is responsible for developing and implementing the firm's marketing plan, along with other initiatives.
- B.S. 1996, Biology, University of Illinois
- J.D. 2001, Northwestern University
- 2001, Illinois
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
- U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin
- Supreme Court of Illinois
- U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
- Ranked among the top five best performing attorneys representing patent owners in inter partes review matters in Patexia’s 2019 IPR Intelligence Report
- Maintains an AV Preeminent® peer review rating from Martindale-Hubbell
- Listed as an Illinois Super Lawyer in the field of intellectual property litigation, 2014-19
- Recognized for his work on post-issuance proceedings in the 2017 edition of Legal 500
- Named an Illinois Rising Star in the field of intellectual property litigation, 2008-13
- Named one of Legal Leaders’ “Chicago’s Top Rated Lawyers of 2015”
- Represented a Fortune 500 company in securing a temporary restraining order, seizure of infringing goods from trade show, preliminary injunction, and award of fees and costs stemming from a Chinese manufacturer’s violations of 13 U.S. design patents.
- Represented a leading footwear and athletic apparel maker in obtaining a temporary restraining order, seizure of infringing goods from trade show, preliminary injunction, and award of fees and costs stemming from a Chinese manufacturer’s violations of 23 U.S. design patents and five registered U.S. trademarks.
- Represented a Fortune 500 company in securing a consent judgment against a China-based importer of shoes infringing various design patents and trademarks, and enforced judgment.
- Represented a leading footwear and athletic apparel maker as patent owner in inter partes review proceedings, successfully defeating 13 petitions pre-institution and two after trials before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board.
- Represented a leading manufacturer of footwear and athletic apparel in litigating an International Trademark Commission investigation and securing a General Exclusion Order on two designs covered by two registered U.S. trademarks.
- American Intellectual Property Law Association
- International Trademark Association
- Federal Circuit Bar Association; 2015 Global Fellows Program Member