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TJSL Grad Hollie Kucera Wins 2019 Mock Markman Competition for Lawyers

November 1, 2019

TJSL graduate and Intellectual Property Fellow Hollie Kucera won first place in both the team and individual competition in the Mock Markman Competition. 

This competition provides patent lawyers with the opportunity to practice claim construction arguments, which are the subject of Markman Hearings, a common proceeding in patent litigation. The competition was created by San Diego Federal District Court Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo and is co-sponsored by the San Diego Intellectual Property Law Association and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. 

Twelve teams competed, submitting Opening and Responsive Claim Construction Briefs and presenting 30 minutes of oral argument defending their proposed claim constructions.

Hollie represented Trestle Law, a firm run by another TJSL graduate Kristen Roberts. The teams were randomly assigned, and Hollie was paired with Kevin Davis from Trojan Law Offices in Beverly Hills. 

Hollie reports that “we argued over proper claim construction over the terms ‘axial open-ended bore,’ ‘chocolate,’ ‘marshmallow, and ‘substantially melt.’ Our oral arguments took place . . . in front of three judges, with Judge Jill Burkhardt as the presiding judge. . . . Many teams used PowerPoints and exhibits, but my partner and I went old school TJSL moot court style and didn’t use any props, just short outlines to ensure we hit all of our talking points. It was a hot bench and the Judge asked some really good and challenging questions that required us all to think on our feet. After the arguments the judge took turns giving us constructive feedback and allowed us to ask questions about how we could improve.”