2017 Report of the Economic Survey August 2017

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The Report of the Economic Survey provides an in-depth report on the annual incomes and related professional characteristics of intellectual property attorneys and patent agents. Conducted every other year, the survey also examines the economic aspects of intellectual property law practice, including individual billing rates and typical charges for representative IP law services

The 2017 version of the Survey is initially broken down by practitioner practice type. Next, the Survey includes the following primary sections:

(1) typical charges for law services,
(2) typical types of fees for law-service charges,
(3) typical costs of litigation, and
(4) characteristics of firms.

The characteristics of firms’ section is further broken down into the following subsections:

(1) number and type of attorneys,
(2) associate starting salary and summer monthly pay,
(3) support staff and services,
(4) billing rates and practices,
(5) liability insurance, and
(6) training and marketing.

New this year: Of notable importance—and included primarily due to their general relevance to the Survey and their unique interest to those tasked with formulating the Survey’s questions—were the following matters:

  • Amending the list of choices pertaining to major technical undergraduate degrees;
  • Adding a question regarding a year-end cash bonus at places of employment;
  • Estimating percentage of annual corporate IP budgets based upon types of work;
  • Including questions regarding practitioners’ familiarity with Global Dossier (i.e., the five-IP offices’ [Europe, Japan, Korea, China, and United States] and five IP industry groups’ initiative to provide patent applicants with a convenient way to view, monitor, and manage intellectual property assets); and
  • Adding new information regarding non-U.S.-originated and U.S.-filed, but non-U.S. prosecuted patent applications.
AIPLA would like to thank Donika Pentcheva, Chair of the Law Practice Management Committee, Frank L. Gerratana , Vice Chair of the Law Practice Management Committee and all of the members of the Committee for their hard work in putting this publication together. We are pleased to continue bringing you this valuable member benefit. We hope that you find the Report a useful reference tool in your practice.
Foley Hoag