Areas of Practice
Education
  • Harvard Law School, J.D., 2006; Executive Editor, Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy
  • Harvard College, A.B., History, magna cum laude, 2003
Bar & Court Admissions
  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland

Jeffrey M. Theodore

Of Counsel
1330 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Washington DC 20036
TEL: +1 202 429 8139
FAX: +1 202 429 3902

Jeffrey Theodore, of counsel in Steptoe’s Washington office, represents domestic and international clients on both the plaintiff and defense sides of complex commercial and intellectual property disputes.  He has been recognized as a “Rising Star” in business litigation by Super Lawyers in 2013, 2014, and 2015. 

Mr. Theodore was trial counsel for BMG in a suit that held Cox Communications liable for its high-speed internet subscribers’ online sharing of copyrighted music files.  Mr. Theodore briefed and argued the summary judgment motion that stripped Cox Communications of its Digital Millennium Copyright Act “safe harbor” defense to contributory copyright infringement liability – the first time a cable internet provider had ever lost its DMCA “safe harbor.”  Ultimately, Steptoe’s trial team obtained a $25 million jury verdict. 

Mr. Theodore has argued appeals in federal and state appellate courts, has direct- and cross-examined witnesses, and has experience before many different arbitral bodies.  He has extensive experience in contractual and other commercial disputes and in patent infringement, copyright infringement, and misappropriation of trade secrets cases.  Mr. Theodore also has significant experience litigating constitutional claims under the Contract Clause, Commerce Clause, Takings Clause, and Due Process Clause.  

Mr. Theodore is active in pro bono matters that range from representing death row inmates to advising the Children’s Defense Fund on child healthcare legislation.  In Renchenski v. Williams, 622 F.3d 315 (3d Cir. 2010), Mr. Theodore represented a prison inmate on appeal after his suit against prison officials was dismissed by the district court.  Mr. Theodore’s victory in the Third Circuit made new law protecting prisoners’ rights under the Due Process Clause and established new procedures to ensure that pro se prisoner plaintiffs have an adequate opportunity to take discovery.  

Representative Matters

Domestic Commercial Litigation

  • Obtained take-nothing dismissal of a class action where the same plaintiffs had obtained settlements worth hundreds of millions of dollars from competitors in the industry in companion suits premised on identical allegations. 
  • On behalf of a major frozen dessert manufacturer, defeated an investment fund’s claim for over $65 million in damages arising out of a failed joint venture. 
  • Obtained, defended on appeal, and enforced an eight figure judgment arising from the breach of residential real estate guaranty obligations during the financial crisis. 
  • Represented a specialty insurer in an action against former officers and directors for breach of their obligations to the company. 
  • Obtained appellate reversal of a $35 million insurance coverage judgment and a ruling with favorable implications for the interpretation of additional insurance policies by developing and presenting arguments regarding the proper scientific understanding of language relating to floodplains, flood hazard, and flood risk.  

Intellectual Property Litigation

  • Obtained a $25 million jury verdict in ground-breaking suit to hold a leading cable internet service provider liable for contributory copyright infringement after it refused to prevent its subscribers from sharing our client’s music online. 
  • Represented a leading, international semiconductor manufacturer in what the plaintiff described as the largest trade secret misappropriation case in California history. 
  • Represented a major international heavy industrial conglomerate in multi-jurisdictional battle, involving multiple patent infringement suits, Walker Process antitrust litigation, and ITC proceedings over wind turbine patents. 
  • Represented a major international chemical company in multiple suits to enforce patents protecting agricultural products and methods. 

International Arbitration and Cross-Border Litigation

  • Obtained a $60 million arbitration award against a major French bank in a dispute over the interpretation of a hedge fund-linked, financial derivative.  Described as a “top plaintiff verdict of 2011,” the award was one of the top ten largest securities arbitration awards at the time it was issued. 
  • Represented a “supermajor” oil and gas company in its worldwide effort to obtain and enforce ICC and ICSID awards arising from the nationalization of its stake in an oil extraction venture.  The Steptoe team obtained a series of pre-award attachment and freezing orders around the world, including $300 million in New York bank accounts that were used to satisfy an eventual judgment.

Noteworthy

Washington, DC Super Lawyers, Rising Star, Business Litigation, 2013-2016

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