Cindy Vreeland is a partner in the Litigation/Controversy Department, and a member of the firm's Intellectual Property Litigation Practice Group.
Ms. Vreeland focuses her practice on patent and trade secret litigation. She has represented clients in a variety of jurisdictions across the country, and has successfully tried cases in federal district courts and the US International Trade Commission in technologies ranging from wireless devices, semiconductor chips and computer storage, to medical devices, pharmaceuticals and superconducting materials. Ms. Vreeland was one of two IP litigators selected by Law360 for its inaugural list of Top Female Trial Attorneys. She has also been recognized by the Best Lawyers in America, Managing IP, IAM Patent 1000 and Boston Magazine for her work in the area of intellectual property litigation.
- Wireless Technology: Represented a major wireless company in a jury trial in the Eastern District of Texas relating to allegedly essential wireless technologies. The plaintiff, an NPE, initially accused our client of infringing 14 patents, previously owned by a leading handset manufacturer, that it claimed were essential to wireless industry standards. The plaintiff ultimately agreed to drop nine of the patents prior to trial. The jury found that each of the five patents asserted at trial was not infringed by our client's products.
- PersonalWeb v. EMC and VMware: Representing EMC and VMware in a suit, initially filed in the Eastern District of Texas, alleging infringement of a portfolio of cloud computing patents. We convinced the Eastern District of Texas to transfer the case to California, and the Northern District of California to stay the case pending our IPR reviews. We subsequently prevailed in each of the IPRs, invalidating all challenged claims of six patents, and the Federal Circuit upheld these rulings in a summary affirmance.
- Cree v. SemiLEDs: Represented Cree in related suits in the District of Delaware alleging infringement of eight Cree patents relating to LED chips. We secured a settlement including an agreed injunction prohibiting the importation and sale of SemiLEDs’ accused products in the United States and a payment for past damages.
- Delano Farms v. California Table Grape Commission: Represented the California Table Grape Commission in a trial in the Eastern District of California relating to patents covering two of the Commission's top selling grape varieties. The court upheld the validity of both of our client's patents.
- Uniloc v. Rackspace: Represented Rackspace in a suit in the Eastern District of Texas alleging infringement of a Uniloc patent relating to floating point numbers. The Court granted our motion to dismiss the complaint on the ground that the asserted claim was not patentable under 35 U.S.C. § 101, in a ruling recognized as a “rare” win in East Texas. 4/1/13 Am Law Daily. Rackspace believes that this was the first time the Eastern District of Texas granted an early motion to dismiss under § 101. 3/28/13 Rackspace Blog
- Yahoo v. Facebook: Represented Facebook in a major patent battle with Yahoo, after Yahoo initiated a lawsuit in the Northern District of California claiming infringement of 10 Yahoo patents. We assisted in mounting a full-scale defense, including a counterclaim for infringement of 10 Facebook patents, described as a “masterful response to Yahoo’s patent trolling.” 4/4/2012 TechCrunch. The parties reached a highly favorable settlement three months later, recognized in the press as “a win” for Facebook. 7/13/2012 Business Insider
- Medtronic v. Globus: Represented Medtronic in a three-week jury trial in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania relating to minimally invasive spinal surgery. The jury found that each of the two patents asserted by our client was valid and infringed.
- Broadcom v. Qualcomm: Represented Broadcom in a three-week jury trial in the Central District of California relating to computer chips for wireless devices. The jury found that each of the three patents asserted by our client was valid and infringed. The broader dispute between the parties subsequently settled for more than $890 million.
- In re. Audio Digital-to-Analog Converters and Products Containing Same: Represented Wolfson Semiconductor in a two-week trial before the US International Trade Commission relating to digital-to-analog circuits. The ITC found the primary patent asserted against our client unenforceable because the inventors failed to disclose highly material prior art to the Patent Office with the intent of deceiving the Patent Office.
- Fonten v. Ocean Spray: Represented Ocean Spray in a two-week jury trial in the District of Massachusetts relating to the marketing of fruit juice products. The jury agreed that our client did not breach a contract between the parties.
- EMC v. Hewlett-Packard: Represented EMC in a three-week jury trial in the District of Massachusetts relating to computer storage devices. The jury found that each of the three patents asserted by our client was valid and infringed. The broader dispute between the parties subsequently settled for more than $325 million.
- Schwarz-Pharma v. Braintree: Represented Braintree in a two-week trial in the District of Delaware relating to gastrointestinal product. The court rejected IP-related antitrust claims against our client.
- In re. Certain Microlithographic Machines: Represented ASML in a five-week trial before the US International Trade Commission in a suit filed by its chief rival, Nikon. At issue was approximately $1.8 billion in annual sales in the market for photolithographic equipment. The ITC found that each of the seven patents asserted against our client was not infringed, invalid and/or unenforceable because of the inventors’ inequitable conduct.
- American Superconductor v. MIT: Represented American Superconductor in the trial of a “patent interference” proceeding relating to high-temperature superconducting materials. The Patent Office intervened in the suit to defend its decision. We successfully reversed the Patent Office’s finding that a patent owned by our client, and a patent application exclusively licensed to it, “interfered.”
- Named among Super Lawyers' "Top Women Attorneys in Massachusetts" in 2013, 2016 and 2017, and the "Top 50 Women Attorneys in Massachusetts" in 2015 for intellectual property litigation; also named a "New England Super Lawyer" (formerly "Massachusetts Super Lawyer") in the 2006-2017 issues of Boston Magazine in intellectual property litigation
- Selected by peers for inclusion in the 2013-2018 editions of the Best Lawyers in America in the areas of litigation: intellectual property and litigation: patent
- Selected as a 2013-2016 IP Star by Managing IP, a guidebook that identifies leading IP lawyers in the United States
- Named a 2015-2017 leading practitioner by IAM Patent 1000: The World's Leading Patent Practitioners
- Recognized among the 2015 Top Women of Law by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly
- Texas Lawyer selected client Apple's success in Core Wireless Licensing v. Apple as a Top IP Defense Win in 2015 in their Top Texas Verdicts & Settlements supplement
- Named among the 2016 and 2013 Top 250 Women in IP by IP Stars, a Managing IP publication that identifies leading female IP attorneys in the US
- Selected as one of Lawdragon Magazine's "500 Leading Lawyers in America" in 2013
- One of two IP litigators selected by Law360 for its inaugural 2012 list of Top Female Trial Attorneys
- Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America, a trial lawyer honorary society composed of less than one-half of one percent of American lawyers
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JD, University of Chicago Law School, 1990with honors
BA, Baylor University, 1987summa cum laude
The Hon. Patrick Higginbotham, US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, 1990 - 1991