jleroy at brookskushman dot com
John's practice focuses on patent litigation in the software, electrical, and mechanical arts. With over 15 years of patent litigation experience, he has represented clients in virtually every industry. John has successfully tried patent cases in Federal Courts nationwide, and has successfully handled appeals before Federal Circuit. A summary of John’s litigation and appellate practice is provided below.
John is also the Chair of Brooks Kushman’s Open Source Compliance practice. He advises companies regarding effective use of open source software in their commercial products. He develops customized strategies for compliance with applicable open source license terms. John’s team manages source code audits and works closely with software developers and business managers to properly navigate the various open source license terms. John’s team has undertaken the audit-and-advice service on complex systems in the automotive, consumer electronics, medical device, and computer industries.
John is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, and U.S. District Courts in Delaware, California, Texas, Illinois, Florida, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey and Wisconsin. John is also a registered patent attorney, and is authorized to practice before the U.S. Patent Office.
John holds a Master’s Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Michigan, and an undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Buffalo, where he graduated cum laude. John’s background in both electrical and mechanical engineering allows him to handle patent cases involving many different technologies.
John is a regular guest lecturer at on Patent Fundamentals at the University of Michigan. John has also personally handled six pro bono civil actions, including one pro bono jury trial.
Representative Jury Trials and Federal Appeals
Eagle Harbor Holdings/Medius v. Ford Motor Company – Jury Trial
Defended Ford in patent infringement trial in which plaintiff was asserting several patents against Ford’s SYNC infotainment system, and Ford’s automatic parking system. Plaintiffs sought damages of $250 million. Jury found patents not infringed, and awarded no damages to plaintiff. Jury also found that plaintiffs had misappropriated Ford trade secrets.
Ancora v. Apple – Appeal to Federal Circuit & Petition for Certiorari
Handled & argued appeal on behalf of Ancora reversing district court’s claim construction of term “program,” and affirming district’s court’s finding of no indefiniteness. Successfully briefed opposition to Apple’s petition for certiorari to U.S. Supreme Court.
AgentWare v. Ford Motor Company – Jury Trial
Defended Ford in trade secrets case relating to computer software for assembly line visualization. AgentWare sought millions from Ford in damages. The court and the jury found for Ford, rejecting AgentWare’s claims.
GreenLeaf/Ford Motor Company v. Technology Solutions Company - Jury Trial
The lawsuit resulted from a failed development of a custom computer system for GreenLeaf (a Ford subsidiary) capable of tracking its national inventory and processing sales transactions. GreenLeaf, represented by Brooks Kushman, demanded a refund of the fees it paid TSC over the course of the unsuccessful development project. After a week-long trial, the jury awarded GreenLeaf $2.3 million.
z4 v. Microsoft and Autodesk. – Jury Trial & Appeal to Federal Circuit
Represented z4 in a patent infringement case involving two patents relating to technology for reducing software piracy. Infringing products included Microsoft’s Windows and Office software, and Autodesk’s AutoCAD software. Brooks Kushman secured a $133 million jury verdict, and a $25 million enhanced damages award for z4. (U.S. Patent Nos. 6,785,825 and 6,044,471) The Federal Circuit affirmed the jury verdict.
Cheetah Omni LLC v. Verizon Services Corporation, et al. – Jury Trial
Represented Cheetah Omni in a patent infringement lawsuit concerning fiber optic switching technology. Secured a $5.4 million jury verdict.
Honors & Awards
Best Lawyers in America, 2015
“Top Lawyer,” DBusiness Magazine, 2013.
“Rising Star,” Michigan Super Lawyers, Intellectual Property, 2008-2010, 2012-2013.
“Up & Coming Lawyer,” Michigan Lawyers Weekly, 2008.
Eastern District of Michigan Pro Bono Service Recognition, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2010-2012
Speaker, “Open Source Software – The Devil is in the Details,” Society of Manufacturing Engineers’ Big M Event, June, 11 2014.
Speaker, “Open Source: Its Free – Terms and Conditions Apply,” ARM TechCon, October, 30 2013.
Speaker, “Open Source Software in the Electric Vehicle”, Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology Show, September 17, 2013.
Speaker, “Understanding & Managing Legal Obligations of Open Source Software”, SAE World Congress, April 16, 2013.
Speaker, “Legal Risks Associated with Open Source Software,” Licensing Executives Society: Software Committee, December 13, 2011.
Speaker, “What CIOs Need to Know About the Legal Risks Associated with Open Source Software,” ExecSense Webinar: Intellectual Property, August 12, 2011.