T. Vann Pearce, Jr.


Washington, D.C.

Read full biography at www.orrick.com
Vann wins difficult intellectual property disputes, and helps clients use their intellectual property to build their companies.

As a litigator of patent infringement and related matters, he has obtained judgments, dismissals, and favorable outcomes in federal district courts, the Federal Circuit, the ITC, and in inter partes review proceedings. As a counselor on patent licensing and portfolio development, Vann crafts precise strategies which minimize legal threats and capitalize on emerging industry trends. Whether resolving today’s disputes or helping his clients plan for the future, Vann understands how to lead teams to successful outcomes, on budget, and in demanding circumstances.

Like his clients, Vann approaches his work with an entrepreneur’s mindset. Vann co-founded and is Co-Chair of Orrick's 3D Printing practice. Vann frequently speaks at conferences and universities around the world about the intersection of 3D printing/additive manufacturing and intellectual property law.

Vann draws upon his technical background to quickly understand complex inventions ranging from semiconductors, to imaging and displays, to chemistry. He holds a chemical engineering degree and worked in the medical device and biotech fields before law school.

  • Apple, Inc. v. Motorola, Inc. (Fed. Cir.). Mr. Pearce represented Apple in several appellate matters against Motorola involving smartphone patents. In the first of these matters, the Federal Circuit overturned ITC rulings that a key Apple touchscreen patent was both anticipated and obvious, and reversed the key claim construction on a second patent. These rulings revived Apple's claims of infringement as to both patents at issue. Law360 named Mr. Pearce and his colleagues "Legal Lions" for this victory (August 8, 2013). In another case, Mr. Pearce was instrumental in Apple's successful effort to reverse an unfavorable claim construction on the so-called "Steve Jobs" patent, covering touchscreen control functionality.
  • EMC Corp. v. Pure Storage, Inc. (D. Del.). Mr. Pearce represented plaintiff EMC in a patent infringement lawsuit against its competitor, Pure Storage. Mr. Pearce directed preparation of EMC's damages case, and the infringement and validity case on one asserted patent, through expert discovery. He also successfully argued a discovery motion hearing. A jury awarded EMC $14 million in damages after trial.
  • Fujifilm Corp. v. Papst Licensing GmbH & Co. KG (D.D.C. and PTAB).  Mr. Pearce represents Fujifilm in this patent infringement litigation involving digital cameras, including serving as lead counsel on two inter partes review petitions. The Orrick team lead by Mr. Pearce obtained a final decision from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board ruling all challenged claims unpatentable.  
  • WordCheck Tech LLC v. EMC Corp. (E.D. Tex.). Mr. Pearce represented EMC in a patent infringement lawsuit involving data loss prevention systems. Following the claim construction hearing, the plaintiff voluntarily dismissed case with prejudice, with no monetary payment required by our client.
  • In the Matter of Certain Short-Wavelength Light Emitting Diodes, Laser Diodes and Products Containing Same, Inv. No. 337-TA-640. Mr. Pearce represented respondent Panasonic Corporation in an ITC Section 337 investigation. The complainant voluntarily withdrew its complaint and terminated the investigation shortly before the hearing.
  • St. Clair Intellectual Property Consultants, Inc. v. Fujifilm Corp. (D. Del. and Fed. Cir.). Mr. Pearce represented defendant Fujifilm Corporation in two patent infringement lawsuits involving digital cameras. Mr. Pearce's responsibilities included defending fact and expert witness depositions. On appeal, the Federal Circuit ruled in favor of Fujifilm and reversed the district court's judgment of infringement.
  • NetAirus Techs., LLC v. Apple, Inc. (Fed. Cir.). Mr. Pearce represented Apple in this appeal, successfully upholding a jury verdict of invalidity. The Federal Circuit issued a summary (Rule 36) affirmance in favor of Apple shortly after oral argument.  
  • FastVDO, LLC v. Apple, Inc., et al. (D. Del.). Mr. Pearce represented several defendants in a patent infringement lawsuit involving H.264 video encoding. The defendants won on all key claim constructions in a ruling issued just four days after the claim construction hearing. Mr. Pearce was a primary author of the winning claim construction briefs. The case settled shortly afterwards on favorable terms.

Posts by: Vann Pearce

Hatch Hints at Changes to Patent Law

A Look Forward on Patent Reform, Senator Orrin Hatch, October 2, 2017

Patent law reform legislation reminds us of a horror movie zombie:  it’s never truly dead.  A recent post from Utah Senator Orrin Hatch is the latest evidence that patents remain on Congress’s busy agenda.  Senator Hatch, who served on the Senate Judiciary Committee from 1993 to 2005 and currently chairs the Senate Republican High-Tech Task Force, recently explained which areas of patent law he believes are in most need of reform.  Because of his influence in the Senate, his remarks may indicate which areas of patent law Senate Republicans are considering altering. READ MORE

Alice Strikes Again: Patent for Biometric Identification and Verification System Invalidated as Directed to a “Well-Known” Idea “Humans Have Always Performed.”

Order Granting Motion to Dismiss, IQS US, Inc. et al. v. Calsoft Labs, Inc., et al., N.D. Ill. (August 18, 2017) (Judge Joan H. Lefkow)

Late last month, we reported on an Order from the Southern District of Texas invalidating identify theft prevention software under Alice as being directed to an abstract idea and lacking a sufficiently inventive concept.  There, Magistrate Judge Palermo found that the idea of preventing identity theft was an idea that has “existed since the dawn of civilization” and compared the claimed invention to the age-old practice of signature comparison and the more recent practice of identification cards.  In a similarly-reasoned order, Judge Lefkow of the Northern District of Illinois recently invalidated a patent for a biometric identification and verification system by finding that the patent claimed the idea of comparing known information about an individual to a second set of information for the purposes of confirming an individual’s identity—a “well-known concept that humans have always performed.” READ MORE