Alternate Office
  • 1114 Avenue of the Americas
  • New York, NY 10036
  • TEL: +1 212 378 7578
  • FAX: +1 212 506 3950
Areas of Practice
  • Syracuse University College of Law, J.D., cum laude, 1998, Syracuse Law Review, Syracuse Moot Court Board
  • Hamilton College, B.A., 1995
Bar & Court Admissions
  • District of Columbia
  • New York
  • South Carolina
  • US Courts of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the Second Circuit
  • US District Court, District of Columbia
  • US District Court, Northern District of New York
  • US District Court, Southern District of New York

Michael J. Allan

1330 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Washington DC 20036
TEL: +1 202 429 6749
FAX: +1 202 429 3902

Michael J. Allan is a partner in Steptoe’s Washington and New York offices.  He is the chair of the firm's Copyright & Entertainment practice, and also serves as co-chair of the Trademark Group.

Mr. Allan has a broad practice that involves the prosecution and defense of trademark, copyright, trade secret, false advertising, publicity rights, and patent claims.  He has successfully litigated numerous intellectual property and other complex commercial litigation cases on behalf of his clients in the manufacturing, pharmaceutical, fashion, music, entertainment, and financial services industries.  He appears regularly in federal district and appellate courts throughout the country, as well as in administrative proceedings at the International Trade Commission (ITC) and the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB).

Mr. Allan has particular experience representing rights holders in the anti-piracy and anti-counterfeiting space.  He regularly represents clients in a broad range of issues relating to the transfer, exploitation, preservation, and protection of their rights in copyrightable works, as well as the prosecution and defense of trademark, trade dress, and trade secret infringement claims.  In December 2015, Mr. Allan served as lead counsel to BMG Rights Management US LLC in a copyright infringement case against Cox Communications where he prevailed at trial with a finding of willful contributory infringement and $25 million in damages awarded, reported by The Virginia Lawyer's Weekly as the largest verdict in Virginia in 2015, and the only one in eight figures.  

In addition, Mr. Allan obtained a summary judgment in a trademark infringement case for a major French fashion house.  Other recent victories include obtaining a General Exclusion Order before the ITC  (In re Handbags, 337 TA 754); a Federal Circuit Court of Appeals victory in which Mr. Allan obtained a complete reversal of a significant sanction award pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1927 on behalf of a New York City based law firm; a summary judgment of $4 million for a British fashion house in a trademark infringement and breach of contract case; a $3.5 million judgment on behalf of a major French fashion house upheld by a precedent setting Second Circuit opinion.

In addition, Mr. Allan is actively involved in counseling clients on intellectual property rights and enforcement strategies.  Specifically, he has drafted and negotiated intellectual property agreements as well as counseled clients on due diligence reviews and intellectual property licensing and transfer agreements.

Mr. Allan also has extensive litigation and trial experience in a variety of disciplines and industries.

Representative Matters

A representative list of Mr. Allan's matters appear below:

  • Served as lead counsel to an international group of music companies in a copyright  infringement case against a major cable provider
  • Serves as lead counsel to several luxury brands on intellectual property enforcement and unfair competition matters
  • Represents a major financial institution in connection with trademark, unfair competition, and false advertising matters
  • Lead counsel to Raymond James Financial in a copyright infringement suit
  • Advised on copyright transfer agreements relating to the book American Grown by Michelle Obama
  • Served as lead counsel to a leading US importer and marketer of luxury wines and spirits in a patent infringement Section 337 investigation
  • Served as lead counsel to a major French fashion house in the first Section 337 investigation in which a luxury goods manufacturer used the ITC to litigate its trademarks against counterfeiters and won a general exclusion order prohibiting the unlicensed entry of certain products infringing on its registered marks
  • Lead counsel to a large manufacturing company in a copyright infringement lawsuit
  • Lead counsel to an Internet services company in a complex trade secret litigation
  • Represents a French pharmaceutical company in Hatch-Waxman patent litigation and related antitrust litigation
  • Enforced a non-competition agreement against a former software executive
  • Represented a major tobacco company in several trademark counterfeiting and infringement lawsuits
  • Represented a large automobile insurance carrier in several trademark infringement and product disparagement cases nationwide
  • Defended a US pharmaceutical company against alleged advertising violations by several state Attorneys General
  • Defended a major US pharmaceutical company in a nationwide products liability class action lawsuit
  • Represented a niche pharmaceutical company in an international arbitration with US and Indian companies over a development and supply agreement dispute


  • National Law Journal's "Trailblazers in IP," 2016
  • Law360 Intellectual Property "MVP," 2016
  • Recognized as a leading trademark lawyer in World Trademark Review 1000, 2014-2016
  • The Legal 500 US, Intellectual Property:  Trademarks – Litigation, 2016-2017; Patent Litigation – International Trade Commission, 2017

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