J.D. Certificate Program in Intellectual Property Law

Ranked #1 in the country by Law Street (June 2017). Ranked #12 in Intellectual Property Law by U.S. News & World Report (2023 rankings).

Founded more than 20 years ago, Chicago-Kent's Intellectual Property Law Program is one of the strongest in the country.

Chicago-Kent was the first U.S. law school to offer a graduate LL.M. program in the study of international intellectual property law, which continues to draw students from Asia, Europe, South America and the United States. As the importance of IP law has expanded, the Chicago-Kent IP program has kept pace, reflecting and anticipating the ever-changing nature and challenges of the contemporary IP field. Whether your interests lie in scientific and technological innovation, branding and advertising, or entertainment, music and the arts, Chicago-Kent's Program in Intellectual Property Law is committed to training the top IP attorneys of the future.

Full-time J.D. students who choose to participate in the optional 1L Your Way program can take Patent Law (or another approved elective) in the second semester of their first year. All other students may take IP courses starting in their second year.

Students who want to pursue a career in intellectual property can earn a Certificate in Intellectual Property Law, which requires 20 hours of IP course work. The Certificate culminates in a practical "Capstone Experience," in which students apply their knowledge to a problem-solving simulation or an actual case. Students in the IP program who plan to practice patent law typically have a background in science, computer science and/or engineering. Those interested in copyright and trademark law come from a variety of backgrounds. Many students continue working while they attend law school.

Students can broaden their knowledge of IP law even further by participating in the student-run Intellectual Property Law Society, IP-oriented moot court competitions, national IP writing competitions, the annual Supreme Court Intellectual Property Review conference, the Chicago Intellectual Property Colloquium (hosted by Chicago-Kent), and the student-run Chicago-Kent Journal of Intellectual Property.

Many graduates of Chicago-Kent's Intellectual Property Law Program work in IP firms and corporate law departments throughout the Chicago area and around the country, including in Washington, D.C., and Silicon Valley. Employers range from large general practice firms like Kirkland & Ellis to IP firms such as Brinks Hofer Gilson & Lione as well as high-tech corporations like Motorola.

2018 Ladas Memorial Award Winner

Meaghan Fontein '18 won the International Trademark Association's 2018 Ladas Memorial Award for her article “Digital Resurrections Necessitate Federal Post-Mortem Publicity Rights.”

Meaghan Fontein, a third-year student at Chicago-Kent College of Law at Illinois Tech, has won the International Trademark Association's 2018 Ladas Memorial Award for her article “Digital Resurrections Necessitate Federal Post-Mortem Publicity Rights.” Each year, two law or graduate student authors worldwide are selected for the award, which honors the best papers on trademark law or related matters.


2018 Lefkowitz Moot Court Champions

Brittany Kaplan ’19 (left) and Evan Kline-Wedeen ’18, pictured here with their coach Ashly Boesche '04 (center), won the 2018 Saul Lefkowitz Moot Court Competition, sponsored by the International Trademark Association.

The Chicago-Kent team of Brittany Kaplan ’19 (left) and Evan Kline-Wedeen ’18 (right) won first place in the national finals of the 2018 Saul Lefkowitz Moot Court Competition, held March 17 at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C. Trademark attorney Ashly Boesche '04 (center) coached the team.


Intellectual Property Management and Markets

IIT also offers a Master's Degree in Intellectual Property Management and Markets. Learn more about the first degree program in the country to provide a foundational understanding of intellectual property that integrates perspectives and skills from business, computer science, design, engineering and law.