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For more than four decades, Fenwick & West LLP has helped some of the world’s most recognized companies become, and remain, market leaders. From emerging enterprises to large public corporations, our clients are leaders in the technology, life sciences and cleantech sectors and are fundamentally changing the world through rapid innovation.  MORE >

Fenwick & West was founded in 1972 in the heart of Silicon Valley—before “Silicon Valley” existed—by four visionary lawyers who left a top-tier New York law firm to pursue their shared belief that technology would revolutionize the business world and to pioneer the legal work for those technological innovations. In order to be most effective, they decided they needed to move to a location close to primary research and technology development. These four attorneys opened their first office in downtown Palo Alto, and Fenwick became one of the first technology law firms in the world.  MORE >

From our founding in 1972, Fenwick has been committed to promoting diversity and inclusion both within our firm and throughout the legal profession. For almost four decades, the firm has actively promoted an open and inclusive work environment and committed significant resources towards improving our diversity efforts at every level.  MORE >

At Fenwick, we are proud of our commitment to the community and to our culture of making a difference in the lives of individuals and organizations in the communities where we live and work. We recognize that providing legal services is not only an essential part of our professional responsibility, but also an excellent opportunity for our attorneys to gain valuable practical experience, learn new areas of the law and contribute to the community.  MORE >

Year after year, Fenwick & West is honored for excellence in the legal profession. Many of our attorneys are recognized as leaders in their respective fields, and our Corporate, Tax, Litigation and Intellectual Property Practice Groups consistently receive top national and international rankings, including:

  • Named Technology Group of the Year by Law360
  • Ranked #1 in the Americas for number of technology deals in 2015 by Mergermarket
  • Nearly 20 percent of Fenwick partners are ranked by Chambers
  • Consistently ranked among the top 10 law firms in the U.S. for diversity
  • Recognized as having top mentoring and pro bono programs by Euromoney

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We take sustainability very seriously at Fenwick. Like many of our clients, we are adopting policies that reduce consumption and waste, and improve efficiency. By using technologies developed by a number of our cleantech clients, we are at the forefront of implementing sustainable policies and practices that minimize environmental impact. In fact, Fenwick has earned recognition in several areas as one of the top US law firms for implementing sustainable business practices.  MORE >

At Fenwick, we have a passion for excellence and innovation that mirrors our client base. Our firm is making revolutionary changes to the practice of law through substantial investments in proprietary technology tools and processes—allowing us to deliver best-in-class legal services more effectively.   MORE >

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Harry Potter Case Illustrates Blurry Line in Copyright Law

April 20, 2008

Laurence Pulgram, Chair of the Fenwick & West Copyright Litigation Group, was recently quoted in an Associated Press article entitled "Harry Potter Case Illustrates Blurry Line in Copyright Law."

For a time, "Harry Potter" superfan Steven Vander Ark seemed to be living a geeky dream. His Web site—an obsessive catalog of spells, characters and creatures in J.K. Rowling's novels—was a hit among fellow fanatics. But all that changed after a little-known publishing company, RDR Books, announced it would release a print version of the lexicon. The author and Warner Bros. sued, asking a judge to block publication on the grounds that it violated copyright law, and the case went to trial this week. The dispute has thrust Ark into the middle of a closely watched case that illustrates the muddled state of copyright law enforcement when it comes to the Web.

The author and her lawyers said they were stirred to action by the proposal to move the Potter lexicon from the anything-goes Web, where it was available for free, into book form, where it would compete directly with a Potter encyclopedia that Rowling plans to write herself. The question now for the courts is whether the lexicon itself violates copyright law, and the decision may not be easy. U.S. rules allow for the "fair use" of copyrighted material in unauthorized works, but there are limits.

Pulgram, an intellectual property lawyer who represented Napster in a copyright fight with the rock band Metallica, said deciding where to draw the line is rarely easy. "Fair use is the most erratically applied doctrine in copyright," he said.

Click here to see the full AP article.