Ference & Associates, LLC

Ference & Associates, LLC

Providing a full range of legal services relating to patents, trademarks and copyrights in many areas of science and technology.

Firm Overview

Based in Pittsburgh PA, the professionals of Ference & Associates work with our clients to obtain intellectual property rights in the United States and other countries. The firm has established a strong network of foreign associates to handle matters outside of the United States. The firm is currently handling matters in over 90 different countries. With our experience, skills, education and legal knowledge, our professionals prepare and prosecute patent, trademark, and copyright applications on behalf of our clients.

Ference & Associates works with clients to oversee every aspect of their patent portfolios. We are experienced in application drafting; counseling, licensing and opinion work; policing and litigation; due diligence and transactional counseling; and other aspects of intellectual property portfolio management. We pride ourselves on creating value for our clients through our extensive expertise.
Main Office

Main Office
409 Broad St.
Pittsburgh  PA  15143

  • (412) 741-8400
Intellectual Property
From our office in Pittsburgh PA, Ference & Associates practices intellectual property law predominately in the fields of high technology. Our attorneys and agents are trained in the areas of science and engineering and all have technical degrees.
Our team has prepared and prosecuted patents, trademarks and copyrights across of broad array of technical areas, such as:

Biotechnology is one of the fastest growing sectors of patent law. In the US and Europe, natural biological substances can be patented if sufficiently isolated from their natural states. While patents exist of adrenaline, insulin and various vitamins, recent court rulings have declared naturally occurring DNA sequences ineligible for patents. This area of patent law is constantly evolving and our professionals have worked to stay current on all related issues and rulings.

Computers, which have gone from being the purview of researchers and hobbyists to being ubiquitous. The number of patent applications and prosecutions reflect this change in fact, computer technology accounted for more recent patent applications than any other sector tracked by the World Intellectual Property Organization. With the rise of smart phones, tablets and ultra books, we expect this trend to continue and are uniquely positioned to work in this fast-moving field.

Chemical patent process, which is complex and our clients benefit greatly from our expertise. With patents relating to everything from life sciences to basic consumer products, having the knowledge to navigate the complicated nature of chemistry is essential. Our team is well versed in chemical engineering and has years of experience in the chemical patent process.

Electrical/Electronics, a nuanced area of patent law covers various conducting materials and their implementations. Like our other areas of expertise, the electrical and electronic patent process requires an extreme attention to detail as well as a clear understanding of emerging technology. Our IP professionals and their support staff have up to date knowledge of the newest developments in this constantly changing field.

Electro-mechanical. With advances in motion sensors, accelerometers and other inventions that involve the intersection of electromagnetic phenomena with physical objects, we've made sure to stay abreast of all the related court decisions and innovations within this rapidly changing industry. Our Attorneys, IP professionals and their support staff are quick, efficient and ready to guide your innovations through the patent process.

Mechanical, which processes have evolved right along with advances in the computational, chemical and other technical fields. As mechanical devices have become more complex, so has the patent process. With our expertise, as well as our vigilant support staff, we are prepared to begin processing patents involving machinery and related devices.

Software, whose patents require a high level of knowledge around technical matters everything from coding fundamentals to computer hardware. Due to the distinctive nature of software patents, extreme care is required to ensure a successful software patent application. Our IP professionals and their support staff have the knowledge and experience to guide software patent applications through the USPTO.
Our firm works with clients to oversee every aspect of their patent portfolios. We are experienced in application drafting; counseling, licensing/opinion work; policing and litigation; due diligence and transactional counseling; among other aspects.
Ference appears as counsel on over 530 issued US patents and 348 published US patent applications (through 2/17/11) and can assist you with all aspects of the Patent process. Our patent application drafting practice focuses primarily on the following sectors:

Computer Hardware, Software and Systems
Electrical/Electronics Design and Manufacturing
Medical Devices
Robotics/Mechanical Devices
Healthcare Information Technology
Business Methods and Processes
Chemical Engineering and Processes
Energy Technologies
Biological Sciences
Metal Forming and Steel Making Processes
Transportation Technologies

Stanley D. Ference III

Mr. Ference is the principal of Ference & Associates, has an extensive background in intellectual property law. He advises clients on all aspects of patent, trademark, and copyright law. Mr. Ference's practice includes litigation for both plaintiff and defendant, patent prosecution for computer related technology, trademark prosecution and oppositions. Mr. Ference has argued before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and has served as an expert witness. He is an E-Discovery Special Master for the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania.
  • The Dickinson School of Law
    J.D. , 1989

Brian S. Malkin

Mr. Malkin counsels clients on patent, trademark, and copyright matters. He represents clients before the United States Patent and Trademark Office and has prosecuted trademark and patent applications from filing to registration. He handles trademark opposition litigation before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board as well as trademark filing and prosecution on a daily basis. Mr. Malkin currently serves as an E-Discovery Special Master for the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania.

For over 18 years, Mr. Malkin has been involved in all types of litigation as lead counsel. He has handled discovery, motions practice, and appellate practice. His cases have included insurance defense, employment disputes, complex business litigation and intellectual property disputes. He has tried cases in federal and state court and represents individuals and large companies, before judges and juries. He also represents clients before Arbitrators and Mediators.

Mr. Malkin has a Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating of AVPreeminent (5.0) for the highest level of professional excellence. He is also an AVVO Super Rated Lawyer.

As a law student, Mr. Malkin clerked for Yablonski Costello Leckie & Chaban, in Washington County. Before moving to private practice, Mr. Malkin began his legal career with the Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Bureau and with Judge Rosalia Parker as a judicial law clerk.

In December of 2005 and 2006, Mr. Malkin was chosen as a Pennsylvania Super Lawyers Rising Star as one of the Best Young Lawyers Under 40 in Workers' Compensation. This distinction is awarded to less than 3% of all lawyers in Pennsylvania.

Mr. Malkin has served multiple times on the Election Board and as Judge of Elections in Franklin Park. Mr. Malkin is past Chair of the Franklin Park Environmental Advisory Council. He now serves on the Franklin Park Zoning Board.

Mr. Malkin regularly contributes his time to Pro Bono employment matters and is past Chair of the Allegheny County Bar Association Workers' Compensation Section Council.

Mr. Malkin lives in Franklin Park with his wife, Christina, and his 3 daughters.

Phi Beta Kappa. Former Law Clerk, Pennsylvania Bureau of Workers' Compensation, 1995.
  • University of Pittsburgh School of Law

Jodie J. Spade

Jodie Spade is a patent attorney with a strong background in electronics and computer software, which she uses in drafting and prosecuting patent applications.
  • Duquesne University School of Law
    cum laude

Norbert Lazar

Norbert Lazar began practicing before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in 2013. Mr. Lazar has a background in biochemistry and microbiology as well as computer software. While in law school he was a staff editor on the Journal of Technology Law and Policy.
  • University of Pittsburgh School of Law
    J.D. , 2016

J Darwin King, Ph.D.

J Darwin King is an attorney with a strong background in neuroscience as well as computer software, which he uses in drafting and prosecuting both domestic and international patent applications. Dr. King also works with startup companies to develop their intellectual property portfolios.
  • University of Pittsburgh School of Law

John W. Goldschmidt, Jr.

John Goldschmidt's practice concentrates on the strategic planning, leveraging, commercialization, and enforcement of intellectual property rights in ideas, inventions, business methods, as well as literary and artistic expression through the use of patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, related licensing, and litigation.
  • Rutgers University Law School
    J.D. , 1988