Internet and Intellectual Property Justice Clinic

In the Bay Area, a hub of invention and innovation, companies and individuals need lawyers to help them protect their intellectual property. Students in USF’s Internet and Intellectual Property Justice Clinic have the opportunity to do just that.

Under the supervision of faculty, students take on pro bono clients, handling patents, trademark and copyright cases from intake to resolution. Clients are individuals and startups working toward social and environmental change, inventors, artists, entrepreneurs, as well as small companies in trademark disputes against larger companies.

Students become temporary registered agents under the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Certification Program, allowing them to practice both trademark law and patent law (under faculty supervision) before the USPTO, and to file trademark applications, defend trademark oppositions/cancellations, and file patents. The Clinic does a wide-variety of other work, such as assisting with copyright registrations, IP licenses and assignments, NDAs and other contracts, and internet-related tasks such as assisting clients with privacy policies, terms of service, and domain disputes.

Regardless of whether students decide on a career in intellectual property law, the practical skills learned in the clinic — from negotiating disputes to performing risk analysis to contract drafting skills — make participants highly desirable to any law firm. These skills include:

  • Performing risk analysis for potential use of a trademark or patent
  • Filing patent and trademark applications
  • Responding to trademark and patent examiner office actions
  • Negotiating trademark disputes
  • Participating in trademark oppositions and cancellations
  • Filing copyright applications and reconsiderations
  • Contract drafting and negotiation
  • Case research and memo writing
  • Client communication and management
  • Case file management and time tracking

In order to process patent applications, students must have earned an undergraduate and/or graduate degree in science.

Faculty


Jessica L. Fajfar

Full-Time Faculty
(415) 422-5371

Jessica Fajfar is the Director of the Internet & IP Justice Clinic and Assistant Professor, where she supervises the USPTO Trademark Program. She has worked on many trademark prosecution matters with students, including filing initial trademark applications, responding to office actions, and defending and enforcing TTAB oppositions and cancellations. She also has assisted students with settling other intellectual property matters, including trademark, copyright, and domain-name disputes,...

Education:

BA, Ohio Northern University, JD, Cleveland State University, LLM in Intellectual Property and Technology, University of San Francisco

Amir V. Adibi

Part-Time Faculty
(415) 851-2566

Amir V. Adibi is a patent attorney with Adibi IP Group, PC, an intellectual property law firm based in San Francisco. Amir specializes in patent, trademark, and copyright prosecution, litigation, counseling, and portfolio development. Amir has expertise in drafting and prosecuting patent applications in the areas of semiconductor, power electronics, electric vehicle, control systems, computer hardware, software, and telecommunications technology. Prior to practicing law, Amir held technical...

Education:

Golden Gate University, LLM Taxation, 2019, Santa Clara University, JD 2012, Harvey Mudd College, BS General Engineering, 2007

Expertise:

Intellectual property

Cliff Kuehn

Part-Time Faculty
(415) 705-6379

Cliff Kuehn is Of Counsel at Dergosits & Noah, a full-service intellectual property firm in San Francisco. He assists multinational companies with implementing global trademark prosecution and enforcement strategies and works across several industries including high tech companies, food and beverage brands, fashion labels, and entertainment. His extensive intellectual property experience and education abroad in Germany, Spain, Sweden, and India are the lens through which he counsels and...

Education:

BA, University of California, Irvine, JD, University of San Francisco School of Law, LLM in European Intellectual Property Law, Stockholm University

Paul K. Tomita

Part-Time Faculty
(415) 305-8948

Mr. Tomita is a founder of the intellectual property law firm, Staniford Tomita LLP. Mr Tomita's practice includes patent preparation, prosecution, infringement and invalidity, trademarks, and copyrights. He has extensive experience in a wide range of technologies including electrical, mechanical, medical devices, optical equipment, semiconductor fabrication, computer networks, encryption, cloud storage, and green energy systems. Mr. Tomita also an advisor, lecturer, and mentor for various...

Education:

BS, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, JD, University of San Francisco