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Brett J. Smith
“I enjoy practicing patent law because I believe in rewarding ingenuity and innovation.”

Brett J. SmithPartner

120 South LaSalle Street
Suite 2100
Chicago, IL 60603VCard
312.577.7007 fax
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J.D., Chicago-Kent College of Law, 2009
B.S., Mechanical Engineering, Michigan State University, 2006


Technical Areas

Bar & Court Admissions

IllinoisMichiganU.S. Patent and Trademark OfficeU.S. District Court for the Northern District of IllinoisU.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan


Chicago-Kent College of Law
  • Member, Moot Court Honor Society
  • Recipient of CALI Awards for Legal Writing II and Legal Rights of Children

Brett J. Smith has a decade of experience securing domestic and foreign patents for clients ranging from small startups to large U.S. and global corporations. In addition to patent preparation and prosecution, Brett regularly conducts patentability investigations and infringement and freedom-to-operate analyses. He also negotiates and prepares intellectual property agreements, including licenses, joint development agreements, confidentiality agreements, and other types of commercial agreements involving IP. Brett also counsels clients in privacy matters including advising on GDPR requirements and various state consumer privacy laws.

Brett’s diverse practice also encompasses IP litigation and patent post-issuance proceedings, offering his clients a full array of patent portfolio management tools. He has provided capable assistance in representing clients during all phases of the litigation process from discovery to trial.

Brett counsels clients engaged in a variety of technical areas, including these:

  • Automotive technologies
  • Commercial vehicles
  • Aviation technologies
  • Robotics manufacturing
  • Medical devices
  • Garage door systems
  • Irrigation products
  • Packaging
  • Consumer products
  • Electronic products
  • Acoustic devices
  • Industrial systems
  • Information technology
  • Agricultural machinery

Following Fitch Even’s service credo, Brett strives to gain a keen understanding of each client’s business so he can partner with them to meet their unique needs and achieve their business goals. 

Prepares and prosecutes utility and design patent applications for large medical product company.

Conducts U.S. patent prosecution together with various worldwide patent professionals for non-U.S.-based clientele.

Advised software company regarding privacy matters including creation and implementation of a right to erasure policy.

Prepared and prosecuted numerous foreign and domestic patent applications directed to automotive technologies including powertrains, drivetrains, electrified vehicles, autonomous vehicles, vehicle control systems, braking systems, body structures, batteries, seating, and climate control for major American multinational automaker and several large manufacturers of automotive components.

Developed and managed extensive domestic and international patent portfolio for leading foodservice packaging company.

Managed extensive patent portfolio and application strategy for large acoustic device company.

In addition, Brett was an integral member of the litigation team for the following matters:

Transcenic, Inc. v. Google, Inc., et al. (D. Del. 2011–15). Represented the plaintiff in a patent infringement action involving spatially referenced street-level imagery for web-mapping applications. Settlement was reached.

TK Holdings Inc. v. CTS Corporation and CTS Automotive Products (E.D. Mich. 2008-14). Defended claims of infringement under patents relating to automotive seat weight sensors. Obtained summary judgment rulings that client’s sensors do not infringe and that the asserted patents are invalid for multiple reasons.

Deere & Company v. Bush Hog, LLC and Great Plains Manufacturing, Inc. (S.D. Iowa 2009). Represented plaintiff in a patent infringement action involving the design of pull-behind rotary cutters.

McDavid Knee Guard, Inc. et al. v. Nike USA, Inc. (N.D. Ill. 2008). Represented plaintiff in a patent infringement suit involving protective athletic apparel. Resolved on a confidential basis.

Bridgetree, Inc. v. Red F Marketing LLC, et al. (W.D.N.C. 2010). Represented plaintiff in a software trade secrets case. Successful jury verdict obtained.

  • Chicago Youth Sports Alliance (nonprofit organization supporting social and academic development of Chicago-area children) 
    • Member, Board of Directors, 2011–16
  • Michigan Intellectual Property Law Association
  • State Bar of Michigan
    • Intellectual Property Law Section

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