Litigation Leaders: Fenwick’s Jed Wakefield on Tech Clients, Staying Connected and Playing the Endgame

Fenwick litigation practice chair Jedediah Wakefield talked to about the firm’s work with technology and life sciences clients, staying connected in the current economic environment and how Fenwick’s litigators differentiate themselves.

Wakefield told that the firm’s unique focus on the needs of technology and life sciences clients, collaborative culture, scalable approach and trial lawyer mentality differentiate its litigators.

Wakefield discussed the work Fenwick’s litigation practice has done over the past year, including defeating patent challenges, securities litigation suits and class actions, and shareholder derivative lawsuits on behalf of technology and life sciences clients such as Amazon, Cray, Loxo Oncology, Peloton Interactive, Tesla, Uber and UCB.

When asked about the firm’s approach to litigating cases, Wakefield said, “Fenwick’s focus on the endgame helps us limit discovery and motion practice to get what we need to win. As an example of that, in a case this year where we saw the opportunity for a rifle-shot summary judgment victory, we focused early fact discovery on that issue, convinced the court to stay expert discovery while we pursued that motion, and ultimately won the case—saving the client considerable expert costs.”

In addressing how Fenwick is coping in the current economic landscape, he noted, “I couldn’t be more proud of how our litigators have come together and continued to deliver outstanding service to our clients in a difficult environment. We were fortunate to have the technology infrastructure in place to make the transition to working from home pretty seamless.

“Along with being there for our clients, we’ve focused on staying connected and supporting our colleagues as we go through this together. That means checking in and communicating even more than we would in the office. As for the economic impacts, it’s highly uncertain how extensive they will be. In past downturns our litigation practice has been countercyclical, but we also plan to use any slowdown as an opportunity to invest even more in the future success of the litigation group and the firm,” he continued.

Wakefield was recently honored among the top intellectual property lawyers in California for 2020 by the Daily Journal and was also recognized by World Trademark Review and Managing Intellectual Property.

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