Steven D. Smit

Shareholder

DIRECT PHONE: 512.480.5653
DIRECT FAX: 512.480.5853

About

Steve is a licensed patent attorney and trial lawyer who specializes in Intellectual Property Law.  He is also a trained mediator and arbitrator and has been appointed by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) to serve on its international list of neutrals.

Steve has over 20 years of experience in handling lawsuits in Federal and State courts for Plaintiffs and Defendants involving intellectual property issues such as patent infringement, trademark and trade dress infringement, copyright infringement, trade secret misappropriation, domain name disputes, cyber-squatting, internet piracy, and unfair competition.

Steve also routinely represents clients in litigation and arbitration proceedings involving a wide array of other issues ranging from disputes over royalties to helping a large group of foreign investors unravel a multi-million dollar land fraud scheme.

In addition to his active litigation and arbitration practice, Steve represents clients before the United States Patent and Trademark Office in proceedings involving trademark registration, opposition and cancellation.

Se Habla Español.

PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS

  • Admitted to bar, 1988, Texas.
  • Licensed to practice before the United States Patent & Trademark Office.
  • Appointed to International List of Neutrals for resolution of disputes before the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

Education:

  • Dordt College (B.A., 1979, concentration in Biology and Chemistry)
  • University of Texas (J.D., with high honors, 1988).  Order of the Coif, Grand Chancellor, Teaching Quizmaster, Texas Law Review.

REPRESENTATIVE EXPERIENCE

Intellectual Property Enforcement and Litigation

  • Representing the inventor/owner of multiple patents in the fields of interactive media and user interfaces. This representation includes prosecuting federal lawsuits for patent infringement against various companies.
  • Representing clients in arbitration proceedings under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP).
  • Assisting clients in investigating allegations of patent, trademark and copyright infringement and defending clients sued for patent infringement by Non-Practicing Entities (NPEs).
  • Representation of a cargo monitoring business in obtaining a permanent injunction in its lawsuit against a competitor for misappropriation of trade secrets and unfair competition.
  • Representation of a textile treatment business in its patent infringement and trade secret litigation against several large clothing manufacturers.
  • Represented the owner of patented “breathing” toy pets in its federal litigation against an international competitor for patent infringement, trade dress infringement and unfair competition.  The case settled after the client obtained a favorable ruling on claim construction and defeated Defendant’s attempt to invalidate the patent.
  • Defense of copier dealerships and their owners in several lawsuits involving allegations of trade secret misappropriation and unfair competition.
  • Represented an inventor in his fraud claims against his former employer and its lawyers over the rights to a patent on acoustic devices.  The matter was resolved in a settlement under which the client received all rights to the patent and monetary compensation.
  • Represented several software companies in their lawsuits against competitors for misappropriation of trade secrets and unfair competition.
  • Represented various companies in their investigation and litigation against former employees who allegedly misappropriated trade secrets or violated their non-compete agreements.
  • Represented a nationally-recognized jeweler in multiple lawsuits against various infringers of client’s jewelry designs.
  • Represented a designer of ornamental doors in multiple lawsuits against various  infringers of the client’s designs.

Commercial Litigation and Arbitration

  • Representation of a Clinical Research Organization (CRO) in its arbitration with a pharmaceutical company over the failure of a Phase 3 Clinical Trial for pain medication.
  • Representation of a Diagnostics Company in its arbitration over royalties owing under a Joint Development Agreement for patented RNA controls for molecular diagnostic assays.
  • Representation of an investor in a FINRA arbitration regarding losses experienced by the investor as a result of broker errors.
  • Representation of an international broker of food products in a lawsuit for fraud and breach of contract against a nationally-known supplier that failed to provide 60,000 tons of chicken parts for shipment to Russia.
  • Representation of a client in litigation against various foreign and domestic parties over a fraud scheme involving exotic animals.
  • Representation of a land developer in a lawsuit for fraud and breach of fiduciary duty against a real estate broker who secretly participated in buying a large commercial tract of property that the client had intended to purchase.
  • Represented a shareholder in a lawsuit against fellow shareholders about control of the family business.  After a two-week trial, the jury awarded actual and punitive damages against other shareholders.
  • Represented a Mexican pharmaceutical firm in a lawsuit against a large international pharmaceutical company for damages incurred as result of defendant’s wrongful injunction in Mexico.  The suit, which involved issues of Mexican intellectual property law, was litigated in federal court in Pennsylvania.
  • Represented numerous Mexican nationals in filing claims in federal court in Georgia for fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and violations of federal anti-racketeering statutes (RICO), arising from a complex land fraud scheme.  See Maiz v. Virani, 253 F.3d 641 (11th Cir. 2001) (affirming $24 Million RICO judgment).  Steve then assisted the clients in their efforts to set aside fraudulent transfers and collect the Judgment through various proceedings in the United States, Switzerland and Mexico.

Litigation for Trustees and Receivers

  • Assisted government-appointed receivers including FSLIC, RTC and FDIC in collection actions, in the investigation of claims against bank directors and officers, and in lender-liability litigation.
  • Represented a bankruptcy trustee as special counsel in its litigation to set aside preferential and fraudulent transfers made by the debtor after the entry of a multi-million dollar judgment.
  • Represented a court-appointed receiver in efforts to collect a judgment in excess of $100 million against a perpetrator of a massive fraud scheme involving foreign currency exchange.

PROFESSIONAL AFFILIATIONS

  • American Bar Association (Dispute Resolution; Litigation; Patent, Copyright and Trademark Sections)
  • State Bar of Texas (Dispute Resolution; Litigation; Intellectual Property Law Sections)
  • Austin Intellectual Property Association
  • International Trademark Association (INTA)

AWARDS AND HONORS

PUBLICATIONS AND PRESENTATIONS

  • “Make a Copy for the File” – Copyright Infringement by Attorneys, Baylor Law Review, Vol. 46, 1994.