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Wilhelm L. Rao

(312) 775-8190

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Wil Rao has been with the firm since 1997, and his practice focuses on litigating, procuring and developing intellectual property rights across a wide-range of technologies. He has represented clients from Fortune 50 corporations to small burgeoning businesses, as well as individuals.  Wil has been involved in areas ranging from all facets of patent prosecution, written opinions and reexaminations to licensing and the successful multi-venue, multi-patent, multi-party patent litigation all across the United States, both at the trial and appellate levels.  Wil has represented clients in a range of technology areas, including: medical devices, specialty chemicals, sporting goods and equipment, HVAC, railway wheels, gaming equipment, heavy machinery, baby/children's products, apparel, consumer electronics and accessories, consumer retail products, furniture, fabric design, hardware and tools, dental equipment, pigments and lubricants.

Wil is a trial-experienced litigator, and has touched on all facets of complex litigation, including pre-filing investigations, pleadings and motions, discovery, pretrial (including Markman proceedings), hearings and taking witnesses at trial.  A number of matters that Wil has been involved with have been resolved by alternative dispute resolution, including resolution through the American Arbitration Association.  Wil has also represented clients pro bono, including recently in a state court proceeding.

Related Experience

  • In the Matter of Certain Cast Steel Railway Wheels, Investigation No. 337-TA-655, before the International Trade Commission (pending) (trade secret misappropriation)
  • ICU Medical, Inc. v. ALARIS Medical Systems, Inc., No. 2008-1077 (Fed. Cir. 2009) (appeal, patent  infringement)
  • In Re Certain Catheters, Consoles And Other Apparatus For Cryosurgery, And Components Thereof, Investigation No. 337-TA-642, before the International Trade Commission (2008)  (patent infringement)
  • CryoCor et al v. CryoCath, 08-0031-GMS (Delaware) (patent infringement)ICU Medical, Inc. v. ALARIS Medical Systems, Inc., No. SA CV 04-0689 MRP (VBKx) (C.D. Cal. 2004-07) (patent infringement)
  • Judicial Extern for the Honorable Blanche Manning of the Northern District of Illinois
  • Teaching Assistant: Evidence and Evidence Advocacy; graduate level Advanced Material Strength and Elasticity at Washington University

Honors & Awards

  • Illinois Rising Stars, Super Lawyers, 2007, 2008, 2009
  • Chicago-Kent College of Law Academic Scholar
  • Highest academic honors in Patent Law, Evidence, Trial Advocacy and Practice Before the Federal Circuit

Professional & Community Involvement

  • Member, International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property
  • Committee Member, American Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Patent Office Practice Committee, Federal Circuit Bar Association
  • Member, ITC Trial Lawyers Association
  • Member of IP, Litigation and Law Practice Management Sections, American Bar Association
  • Member, Illinois State Bar Association
  • Past Co-Chair of the Market Power Committee and Patent Litigation Committee, Intellectual Property Owner’s Association
  • Member, Chicago-Kent Trial Advocacy Team


  • Unusual Patent Probe Is Seen Targeting Chinese Device Maker, Medical Device Daily (October 7, 2013)
  • 7 Open Questions In The IP World, Inside Counsel Magazine (February 2013) View File
  • Apple v Samsung: Swipe, Pinch and Zoom to the Courtroom, The Economist (September 1, 2012) View File
  • Annual Review of Intellectual Property Law Developments, American Bar Association (2011)
  • Navigating IP Litigation Landmines in the United States, China Medical Device Manufacturer (August 2011) View File
  • IP Litigation and the ITC: A Primer, MX - Medtech Executive (September 2010) View File


  • “Mitigating Trade Secret Theft: An Update On U.S. Gov’t Enforcement Strategies,” Ocean Tomo’s 2013 Trade Secret Management & Monetization Symposium, September 2013
  • “Guarding the Company Jewels: Tips For Dynamically Securing Trade Secrets,” 2013 Global IP & Innovation Summit (Shanghai), Managing Intellectual Property, September 2013
  • “Where Are Things Really at in Terms of IP Protection in China Now?” 2013 Managing Intellectual Property's IP in China Symposium: Growth and Opportunities for U.S. Companies, April 2013

Areas of Practice


Bar Admissions / Registrations

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


  • Chicago-Kent College of Law, J.D., with honors
  • Washington University, M.S.E.
  • Washington University, B.S., cum laude