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Michael R. Graif

Member

[email protected]

+1.212.692.6287

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Michael is an intellectual property attorney whose practice encompasses trademark and copyright enforcement, technology and licensing transactions, patent and trademark portfolio management, and counseling clients on intellectual property issues that arise in business deals. He also has extensive experience in cybersecurity, privacy, and social media law. His clients range from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies in a broad range of industries, including technology, manufacturing, sports & entertainment, and digital & social media.

The rights enforcement side of Michael’s practice includes trademark, copyright, and patent matters, domain name proceedings, and advising clients on publicity and privacy rights.

Michael’s IP transactional work includes drafting licensing, joint venture, and other agreements involving trademarks and technology. He also frequently conducts due diligence on intellectual property issues related to mergers and acquisitions, securitizations, loans, securities offerings, and other transactions.

A national expert, Michael has been interviewed on television and quoted in national media outlets on file-sharing and copyright issues. According to World Trademark Review, Mr. Graif, “epitomizes the term ‘IP expert’,” and has “a breadth of experience in trademark work and can clearly explain legal concepts and strategies to people who may not be well versed in law.” Along with appearing on Bloomberg Television and Reuters Television, he has been quoted in the Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Above the Law, The Guardian of London and The Daily Deal, and other news outlets. He teaches social media law as a Lecturer in Law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School and an Adjunct Professor at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law.

Prior to joining Mintz, Michael was chair of the intellectual property group at a New York-based international law firm, where he was a partner for a decade. Earlier, he was a partner at a Washington, DC-based national law firm; a counsel and associate at another New York-based global law firm; and an associate at a New York-based intellectual property law firm.

Education

  • University of Toronto (LLB)
  • University of Pennsylvania (BS, Electrical Engineering, magna cum laude)

Experience

  • Counseled boutique tax company G2 FinTech on intellectual property issues related to the sale of its technology and intellectual property assets to KPMG LLP.
  • Counseled MSC Industrial Direct Co., Inc. on intellectual property issues in its $550 Million Acquisition of the North American distribution business of Barnes Group Inc.
  • Acted as trademark expert for Kraft/Heinz in trade dress dispute in Australia with Bega Cheese.
  • Defeated a motion for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction for copyright infringement, trade dress infringement, and unfair competition brought against Casabella Holdings.

Recognition & Awards

  • World Trademark Review: WTR 1000 Leading Trademark Practitioners (2013 – 2019)
  • Pro Bono Award, Legal Aid Society (2005)
  • Included on the New York Super Lawyers list (2013 – 2018)

Involvement

  • Member, New York State Bar Association
  • Member, New York Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Member, Law Society of Upper Canada
  • Member, International Trademark Association

Languages

- French

Recent Insights

News & Press

Viewpoints

Viewpoint General
This year the Supreme Court, United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, and the Circuit Courts penned a number of opinions impacting trademark law.  Here are some key takeaways from the past year:
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Viewpoint General
Relatives of the late conservative political activist, Phyllis Schlafly, lost their appeal to prevent the Saint Louis Brewery, LLC (“the Brewery”) from trademarking the Schlafly name in connection with various beer products on November 26, 2018. 
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News & Press

An article published by Super Lawyers shared domestic legal advice for those looking abroad for their intellectual property. In the article, Mintz Member Michael Graif commented on key considerations for protecting a trademark or copyright in a foreign country.
Amazon has a new idea for settling patent disputes — one that doesn’t involve courtrooms, judges or expensive trials. Here, Michael Graif comments on the pilot program that allows patent owners to confront merchants they believe are selling infringing products on the platform.
This article discusses a trademark battle between Washington D.C.’s International Spy Museum and New York’s KGB Spy Museum. Mintz Member Michael Graif, who is not involved in the matter, is quoted providing third-party commentary.
This New York Law Journal feature article highlights the arrival of experience trademark strategist, Michael Graif. Michael, who previously led the intellectual property practice at Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle, joins the Mintz New York office as a Member.

Events

Speaker
Feb
4
2019

Cybersecurity Best Practices for Legal Services Providers 2019

Practising Law Institute

PLI New York Center, 1177 Avenue of the Americas, (2nd floor), entrance on 45th Street, New York, New York

Moderator
Nov
7
2018

Free Speech and Online Platforms

Cardozo Arts and Entertainment Law Journal and Cardozo's Philosophy and Law Society

Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, 55 Fifth Avenue, New York

Moderator
Feb
10
2017

Fake News and the New Administration

University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law Volume 19 Symposium Hate Crime v. Hate Speech: Exploring the First Amendment

Philadelphia, PA

Panelist
Apr
14
2016

Digital Creativity: Culture Reimagined

World IP Day 2016

Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, New York, NY

Speaker
Jan
22
2016

Selected Ethics Issues in IP Rights Enforcement and Defense

Practicing Law Institute Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement 2016 Seminar

New York, NY

Panelist
Oct
16
2015

Monetizing and Marketing Musicians Through Social Media (and avoiding missteps along the way)

Entertainment Business Law Seminar, CMJ Music Marathon

New York, NY

Panelist
Jul
15
2015

Attorney Advertising and Social Media and Ethical Implications

Hot Topics in Intellectual Property Law, New York Intellectual Property Law Association

New York, NY

Speaker
Jun
16
2015

EU Digital Single Market/Safe Harbor

Europe Team Meeting of U.S. Trade Commissioners stationed in Europe

New York, NY

Panelist
Mar
13
2015

Athletes’ Rights in Evolving Sports Media

hird Annual Cardozo Sports Law Symposium

Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, New York, NY

Speaker
May
19
2014
Moderator
Mar
28
2014
Panelist
Nov
7
2013

Protecting Licensing Income Streams - Negotiating a Good Deal is no Guarantee!

Licensing Executives Society New York Chapter Fall Meeting

New York, NY

Panelist
May
6
2013

Ethics and Social Media - Why Can't We Be Friends?

New York State Bar Association's Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law Section's 25th Anniversary Celebration

New York, NY