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Christopher Scharff


Chris Scharff’s practice includes all areas of intellectual property.  Since the enactment of the America Invents Act, Chris’s practice has included a particular emphasis on inter partes review (“IPR”) challenges of patents before the U.S. Patent Office.   Chris has represented clients in over 65 IPR proceedings in the last five years, resulting in over a dozen early-stage non-institution wins on behalf of patent-owner clients, as well as numerous favorable final decisions or settlements for both patent-challenger and patent-owner clients.  Chris is a frequent speaker and author on IPR topics. 

Chris’s practice also includes patent litigation through discovery, trial and appeal.  Chris is a member of the bar of both the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court.  Chris regularly represents both plaintiffs and defendants in disputes ranging from small cases to ones involving hundreds of millions of dollars.  He has represented clients in patent disputes on technologies as varied as orthopedic implants, infusion pumps, spinal surgery devices, GPS hardware, chemical products, advanced materials, automotive technology, food processing and wireless communication technology.  In addition, Chris also regularly assists clients with patent prosecution, freedom-to-operate opinions, trademark portfolio management, IP due diligence for mergers and acquisitions, licensing negotiations, and other matters.

Honors & Awards

  • Top 100 most active IPR Practitioners in the US, Docket Navigator 2014
  • Rising Star, Super Lawyers, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016

Publications and Presentations

  • Presenter, “PTAB Best Practices and Strategies:  Live Webcast” (October 18, 2016)
  • Presenter, “Challenging Patents in IPRs:  Strategies for Filing Petitions” (August 4, 2016)
  • 5 Factors That Affect PTAB's Inter Partes Review, InsideCounsel (May 2016)
  • 5 Tips for Challenging a Patent Via an IPR, InsideCounsel (December 2015) 
  • 5 Tips for Patent Owners Facing a Dreaded IPR Petition, InsideCounsel (November 2015) 
  • Rethinking Medical Device Damages: Updated Strategies for Calculating Damages and Determining Valuation in Light of Evolving Fed. Cir. Case Law, Presented at ACI Medical Device Conference (March 2014)
  • Overview of the U.S. Patent System and Pharmaceutical Patents, Presented at University of Maryland Masters in Regulatory Science Program (2014)
  • Alternative Damages Theories in Patent Cases, Today's General Counsel (February 2014)
  • Get Them Talking: Ten Tips for Effective Expert Witness Depositions, Today’s General Counsel (April 2013)
  • Think Before Sending That Email, Medical Design Technology (April 18, 2013) View File
  • Ten Tips for Taking More Effective Depositions, Intellectual Property Today (March 2013) View File
  • Think Before You Send: The Legal Risks in Casual Email, Forbes.com (June 2012) View File

Areas of Practice


Bar Admissions / Registrations

  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
  • U.S. Supreme Court


  • Cornell Law School, J.D. cum laude
  • Northwestern University, B.S. Materials Science and Engineering