Joseph A. Powers


  • Joseph A. Powers
  • Phone: +1 215 979 1842

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  • Duane Morris LLP
    30 South 17th Street
    Philadelphia, PA 19103-4196

Joseph A. Powers has two decades of experience handling patent litigation and prosecution matters on behalf of some of the world’s largest technology innovators, as well as for individual inventors and startup companies.

In enforcement and trial matters, Mr. Powers leads the technical team and is responsible for clearly articulating to the Court and to his clients technical strategies with respect to infringement and invalidity, interfaces with technical experts and oversees substantive discovery. He regularly appears before courts throughout the country, arguing at claim construction, summary judgment and other proceedings involving technology. While Mr. Powers has deep knowledge of his clients’ technologies and those of the patents-in-suit, he understands that his audiences may not.

As part of his litigation practice, Mr. Powers works with the firm’s nationally recognized Patent and Trademark Appeal Board (PTAB) and Inter Partes Review practices in challenging asserted patents.

As part of his prosecution and counseling practice, Mr. Powers provides strategic guidance to executive management on the development and commercialization of products and services, and the implementation of patent strategies. He assists investors in negotiations and transactions involving intellectual property, including due diligence reviews of patents, and assists parties in mergers and acquisitions involving intellectual property of all types. He also prepares intellectual property opinions of counsel, responds to patent demand letters and regularly assists in the settlement of adverse claims.

Mr. Powers has prosecuted and secured patents in diverse areas of technology across the electrical, mechanical and software arts.

Mr. Powers is a registered patent attorney before the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and is admitted in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. He is a 1999 magna cum laude graduate of Villanova University School of Law, where he was a member of the Law Review and elected to the Order of the Coif, and is a summa cum laude graduate of Villanova University, where he received a bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering.

Representative Matters


  • Obtained from district court finding of invalidity of all claims of two widely asserted and previously litigated patents based on indefiniteness.
  • Obtained from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit on behalf of an American multinational telecommunications corporation an affirmance of summary judgment of invalidity of a software patent with computer-implemented means-plus-function claim limitations because the patent failed to disclose corresponding algorithms.
  • Obtained from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit on behalf of an American multinational telecommunications corporation an affirmance of summary judgment of non-infringement of a widely enforced patent purportedly applicable to WiFi and femtocell functionality.
  • Defense counsel for international biometric scanner manufacturer in patent infringement matter. Obtained decisive Markman ruling on patent claim scope, leading to dismissal of action with prejudice.
  • Plaintiff counsel in patent litigation relating to wireless mesh communications. Won significant Markman decision affirming broad application of asserted claims.
  • Defense counsel in patent litigation relating to parimutuel wagering systems. Settled case on terms client found favorable after securing Markman decision limiting claim scope of multiple asserted patents.
  • Counsel to a foreign corporation in defense of a patent-infringement suit before the International Trade Commission relating to controls for injection blow molding machines.
  • Other Matters

  • Counsel in numerous Inter Partes Review proceedings where patents were found invalid and invalidity affirmed by the Federal Circuit.
  • Counsel to power IC design and manufacturing company as startup through purchase by a Fortune 200 company. Guided company in building a patent portfolio from scratch into an industry-leading position.
  • Counsel to leading international semiconductor foundry in obtaining and enforcing both foreign and domestic patents and trademarks.
  • Counsel to a globally recognized world leader in the automatic data capture market.
  • Counsel to local university in patent preparation matters.
  • Counsel to several individuals, startup companies, and small businesses in various fields, such as pet toys, medical devices, automated assembly devices, biometric sensors and computer software.


  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
  • Pennsylvania
  • New Jersey
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey
  • Supreme Court of Pennsylvania
  • Supreme Court of New Jersey


  • Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law, J.D., magna cum laude, 1999
  • Villanova University, B.S.E.E., summa cum laude, 1996


  • Duane Morris LLP
    - Partner, 2008-present
    - Associate, 1999-2007

Professional Activities

  • American Bar Association
  • Pennsylvania Bar Association
  • Philadelphia Bar Association
  • American Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Philadelphia Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts

Honors and Awards

  • Recipient of the 2011 John J. Gallen Memorial Award from Villanova University, which "recognizes the achievement of those whose technical effort yields advances in the engineering profession."
  • Listed in Pennsylvania Rising Stars, 2013