Who We Are

Brinks' President, Gus Siller provides a brief overview of the firm's 100-year history as strategic partners and colleagues to our clients.

Firm History

Over A Century of Service

Brinks Gilson & Lione is one of the largest intellectual property law firms in the US, and helps clients around the world to protect and enforce their intellectual property rights. Our more than 130 lawyers, patent agents and scientific advisors assist clients in all aspects of patent, trademark, unfair competition, trade secret, and copyright law. Brinks attorneys provide informed counsel with respect to innovations in a range of complex and valuable technologies, including pharmaceuticals, chemicals, bioengineering, industrial manufacturing, electronics and software and medical devices. 

Click here to view more of our firm history.

Diversity and Inclusion

Moving forward together

At Brinks, we know that diversity is the way forward—not just for our firm, but for a better and more inclusive legal and business community as a whole. Simply put, we are smarter, stronger and more creative when our ideas reflect different perspectives.

A firm commitment

We don’t just support diversity—we actively seek it out. Reporting directly to our firm president, our Diversity & Inclusion Committee leads an array of initiatives to help people of different races, genders and sexual orientations succeed at Brinks, including:

  • Firmwide cultural competence training

  • Robust mentoring programs

  • Recruitment at minority job fairs and law schools

  • Sponsorship of diverse legal and charitable organizations

  • Active involvement in minority networking organizations

  • Meaningful, high-profile work assignments for all professionals.

Diversity hiring above the national average

Diversity is not a competition—if all law firms excel at it, everyone wins. However, we are proud that our diversity & inclusion recruiting numbers are well above the national average—particularly unusual for an IP-focused firm where the need for scientific and technical backgrounds limits our hiring pool.

We're pleased that in 2017, our fall class was 62% minority and 87%female; our 2017 Summer associate class was 83% minority and women.

Building networks

Success as a lawyer is about more than getting the job and doing great work—it’s about forging relationships outside the firm that will help you advance in your career. We encourage (and financially support) Brinks lawyers who participate and assume leadership roles in minority networking organizations and professional development conferences, including:

  • Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms (CCOM)
  • Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA)
  • Coalition of Women's Initiatives in Law Firms
  • Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession (IILP)
  • National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA)
  • Asian American Bar Association of the Greater Chicago Area (AABA Chicago)
  • Asian Pacific American Affairs Commission of Michigan
  • Indian-American Bar Association of Chicago (IABA)
  • Lambda Legal
  • Lesbian and Gay Bar Association of Chicago (LAGBAC)
  • Black Women Lawyers Association (BWLA)
  • Chicago Council of Black Law Student Associations (CCBLSA)
  • Korean Bar Associate of Chicago (KABA)
  • Minorities in the Profession Committee of the North Carolina Bar Association
  • Chicago Women in IP (ChiWIP)
  • Korean Bar Association of Chicago (KABA)
  • National Bar Association (NBA)

Creating Diversity

If you can't find diversity in the legal profession, make some! Brinks sponsors pipeline education programs in several underserved areas in regions where we have offices. The programs we support introduce elementary, middle, high school and beyond students to the possibilities of a legal career. And we make it possible for them to pursue their dreams by supporting scholarships including:

  • Legal Prep Charter Academy Sponsorships

  • ABA Judicial Internship Opportunity Program

  • Just the Beginning Foundation

Recognized for inclusiveness

We take great pride in the fact that that colleagues and clients have acknowledged our diversity efforts. The Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA) has recognized the firm’s diversity and inclusion efforts and successes by naming BGL as a winner of the MCCA Thomas L. Sager Award for the Midwest Region, an achievement that continues to encourage us.

Portrait of a Pipeline—The Legal Prep Story

We feel a parent’s pride in West Chicago’s Legal Prep Charter Academy—probably because we’ve supported the school since before it had students, teachers or even a building. This unique high school provides a law-themed education for students from a community historically underrepresented in the professions. Every year, more than 20 Brinks lawyers mentor Legal Prep student interns, familiarizing them with the legal environment, working with them on cases and helping them toward successful, productive futures. In 2016, Legal Prep’s first class of graduating seniors boasted an impressive 100% admissions rate to four-year colleges and universities. We couldn’t be prouder!

Brinks Facts

Intellectual Property Team

Attorneys & Scientific Advisors: 130+

Technology areas covered: 60+

Attorneys with advanced degrees: 30+

Languages: 13

Licensed at the USPTO: 100+

Incorporated: 1917

2017 Stats

Patents Applications Filed: 1,993

Patent Grants: 1,847

Trademark Applications Filed: 277

International Patent Applications Filed: 905

International Trademark Applications Filed: 718

Brinks' Docketing System

Flash Docket

Flash Docket is a proprietary software solution that automatically updates clients' patent information by directly connecting Brinks' docketing technology to the Patent Application Information Retrieval (PAIR) system at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

Client Portals

Client Portals offer 24/7 access to your domestic and foreign matters. The Client Portals are implemented as web portals that provide secure access from virtually anywhere to your applications, USPTO correspondence, docket information, and due date reports. Your Client Portal is extensible.

Custom Analytics

Our docketing system captures detailed USPTO data from the PAIR system, including art unit and examiner data. Our docketing system enables client specific analysis of your portfolio to help obtain a better understanding of how your applications are progressing through the USPTO and to identify potential roadblocks in advance.

Community Involvement | Pro Bono

Serving Our Communities

Brinks Gilson & Lione has a firm-wide commitment to pro bono work.  Recognizing that our attorneys have a professional responsibility to contribute time, skills, and other resources to provide necessary legal services to members of the public who could not otherwise afford them, we formally organized and approved a written pro bono policy in 2001 emphasizing that service to persons of limited means is the essence of pro bono. 

We believe our community is stronger and safer as a result of our attorneys participating in our pro bono program. For example, our attorneys have partnered with various legal-aid agencies to:

  • assist immigrant crime victims who have suffered mental or physical abuse and have helped law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of criminal activity;
  • assist members of our community get back on their feet by assisting them with petitioning for executive clemency;
  • assist residents in housing court that are facing improper evictions;
  • act as court appointed guardians to represent the interests of minors; and
  • provide legal advice to artists and art organizations

Our pro bono program permits every attorney to represent need-based clients who qualify for our services.  In addition to the above-matters, attorneys at Brinks Gilson & Lione have assisted members of our communities by handling pro bono matters referred by:

  • Cabrini Green Legal Aid;
  • Chicago Volunteer Legal Services;
  • Federal Circuit Bar Association;
  • Indianapolis Bar Association;
  • Lawyers Committee for Better Housing;
  • Lawyers for the Creative Arts;
  • Legal Services of South Central Michigan; 
  • Utah Courts Office of Guardian ad Litem, and many others 

Brinks Gilson & Lione also serves our community in other ways.  For the past several years, the Firm has assisted the students of Legal Prep Charter Academy, a free legal-themed high school on the West Side of Chicago.  Legal Prep aims to provide a high quality education and increase the population of diverse attorneys in the legal profession.  Our attorneys have mentored high school juniors and seniors through mock-trial and negotiations programs, as well as through ACT tutoring.  Through this program, Brinks aims to prepare these students for the next stages of their education.

Charitable Giving

In addition to the time and skill provided by our volunteer attorneys, the firm makes annual financial contributions to organizations that provide additional legal services to persons of limited means, including:

  • Chicago Bar Foundation Investing in Justice Campaign
  • Coordinated Advice and Referral Program for Legal Services (CARPLS)
  • Legal Aid Society;
  • Public Interest Law Initiative (PILI), and many others

Through these contributions Brink Gilson & Lione strives to ensure that our local legal aid agencies can provide the necessary legal assistance to the members of our communities.

Cristo Rey Program

For more than 13 years, Brinks has sponsored four students as part of the Corporate Internship Program at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School. Each student works at the Firm one day each week in various departments to offset the cost of his or her education, and to experience a real-world work environment. The Firm pays a flat fee that is applied directly to a portion of the students' tuitions. The program was started in order to provide a quality education to students who could not otherwise afford it.

Brinks has been committed to the quality of the students’ hands-on experience. The skills developed in the program become the foundation of the skill sets they use later in their careers.  The Firm is pleased to include two Cristo Rey alumni among its full-time employee ranks.  

Awards and Recognition

Brinks Gilson & Lione is frequently recognized as a leader in all areas of intellectual property.

Best Law Firm - National - Intellectual Property Law, 2016
Tier 1 - IP Litigation, 2018
            Patent Law, 2011-2018
            Trademark Law, 2013-2018
Tier 2 - IP Litigation, 2013-2017
            Patent Litigation, 2013-2018
Tier 3 - Copyright Law, 2017-2018
Ann Arbor
Tier 1 - Patent Law, 2018
Chicago
Tier 1 - IP Litigation, 2018
            Patent Litigation, 2018
            Patent Law, 2018
            Trademark Law, 2018
Raleigh
Tier 1- Biotechnology Law, 2018
           Patent Law, 2018
Tier 3 - Corporate Law, 2018
Tampa
Tier 2 - IP Litigation, 2018
Tier 3 - Patent Litigation, 2018
Washington, D.C.
Tier 3 - IP Litigation, 2018
U.S. News & World Report

Top Ranked for Intellectual Property Law in Illinois, 2003-2018
Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business

Tier 3, Copyright - United States, 2016-2018
Tier 3, Patent Prosecution – United States, 2016-2018
Tier 3, Trademark Prosecution – United States, 2016-2018
Tier 3, Trademark Contentious – United States, 2018
Other Notable Firm, Trademark Contentious – United States, 2017
Tier 4, Patent Contentious – United States, 2016-2017
Other Notable Firm, Patent Contentious – United States, 2018
Highly Recommended, Patent Prosecution – Illinois, 2016-2018
Highly Recommended, Trademark – Illinois, 2016-2018
Recommended, Intellectual Property – North Carolina, 2016-2018
Highly Recommended, Intellectual Property – Michigan, 2016
Recommended, Intellectual Property – Michigan, 2017-2018
Managing Intellectual Property magazine’s IP Stars

Corporate INTL magazine, Copyright Law Firm of the Year - Illinois, 2015, 2017

BTI Consulting - Brand Elite 2017: Client Perceptions of the Best-Branded Law Firms
Honor Roll of Value Driving Firms

BTI Consulting - 2015 IP Outlook
Brinks is one of 12 IP VIPs: the law firms "best-positioned to deliver in all IP aspects-litigation and patents, complex and routine."

Gold Band, Illinois, 2012-2018
Silver Band, National Trademark, 2012-2018
World Trademark Review 1000

Top law firm for Patent Prosecution (Including reexamination and post-grant proceedings, 2009-2017
Top law firm for Trademarks, non-contentious, 2014
Legal 500 - United States

Silver Band, Patent Litigation – Illinois, 2012-2018
Silver Band, Patent Law – Michigan, 2014-2015
Silver Band, Patent Law – North Carolina, 2012-2018
Silver Band, Patent Law – Utah, 2015-2017
Bronze Band, Patent Law – Michigan, 2016-2018
Recommended, Patent Licensing – Illinois, 2012, 2013 
Recommended, Patent Prosecution – Illinois, 2012-2018
Recommended, Transactions - Illinois, 2015-2018
IAM Patent 1000: The World’s Leading Patent Practitioners

Firm of the Year Midwest, Trademark – Contentious , 2013 
Tier 1, Trademark Prosecution - Midwest, 2012, 2013
Tier 1, Trademark Contentious - Midwest, 2012, 2013
Tier 1, Patent Prosecution - Midwest, 2012, 2013
Tier 2, Patent Contentious - Midwest, 2012, 2013
Managing Intellectual Property magazine's North American IP Awards

Trademark Prosecution Firm of the Year - Midwest, 2010-2011
Trademark Litigation Firm of the Year - Midwest, 2009-2011
Patent Litigation Firm of the Year - Midwest, 2010
Managing Intellectual Property magazine's North American IP Award

Top 5 Trademark Practice, 2012
Intellectual Property Today magazine's "Top Trademark Law Practices"

Top 15 Trademark Firms, 2014
Intellectual Property Today magazine's Top Trademark Firms

Top 20 Patent Law Firm in the U.S., 2008-2014
Intellectual Property Today magazine's "Top Patent Firms"       

Ranked in the Top 300 Law Firms, 2012, 2013
National Law Journal

Top 10 Largest IP Law Firm, 2014
Law360

Top 30 Largest IP Practice Groups, 2012     
Law360 

#1 Intellectual Property Firm in Illinois, 2005-2011
Practical Law Company, PLC Which Lawyer? Yearbook

#1 Intellectual Property Firm in Illinois and Chicago, 2009-2011
Best Lawyers in America

Intellectual Property Law Firm of the Year USA, 2010
Finance Monthly

Law Firm of the Year (Intellectual Property) – North America, 2010
InterContinental Finance

Trade Law Firm of the Year: USA, 2014
Lawyer Monthly-Legal Awards

Top 5 Patent Litigation Firm - National, 2010

Top 5 Trademark Litigation Firm - National, 2010

Top 5 Patent Prosecution Firm - Regional, 2010
Managing Intellectual Property magazine's North American IP Awards

Top 10 Indianapolis-Area Intellectual Property Law Firm, 2009-2011
Indianapolis Business Journal

Top 20 Largest U.S. Intellectual Property Law Firm, 2009-2010
Law360's "Largest IP Practices"

Top 20 Largest IP Law Firm in Metro Detroit, 2011
dBusiness Magazine

Top 20 Most Diverse Law Firm in Illinois, 2010
Chicago Lawyer

Top 25 Largest Chicago Law Firm, 2009-2010
Crain's Chicago Business

Top 25 Largest Law Firm in Illinois, 2009-2011
Chicago Lawyer

Recipient of the Decade Award for Outstanding Legal Writing, 2010
The Burton Awards for Legal Achievement