Morgan Chu

USA: California

Irell & Manella LLP
1800 Avenue of the Stars
Suite 900 Los Angeles
CA 90067-4276 United States

Tel: 310-203-7000
Fax: 310-203-7199


Mr. Chu is a partner of Irell & Manella LLP.  He was named The Outstanding Intellectual Property Lawyer in the United States in the first Chambers Award for Excellence, 2006.  Chambers has described Mr. Chu as “beyond doubt the most gifted trial lawyer in the USA,” who “delivers staggering results for clients.”

Mr. Chu was Co-Managing Partner of the firm for two terms from 1997 to 2003 and has been a member of its Executive Committee since 1985.  He is presently Chair of the Litigation Group.

After law school, Mr. Chu clerked for the Honorable Charles M. Merrill of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, joined Irell & Manella as an associate in 1977, and became a partner in 1982.

Mr. Chu was lead trial counsel in cases with over $4.3 billion in jury verdicts and settlements, including:

  • City of Hope v. Genentech – The jury verdict was the largest damage award ever affirmed on appeal by California courts.  More than $565 million was paid by the defendant.
  • TiVo v. EchoStar, et al. – $1.6 billion in judgments and settlements including over $600 million paid by EchoStar after the jury verdict and post-trial proceedings; TiVo v. Motorola and TiVo v. Cisco – $490 million; TiVo v. AT&T – $215 million; TiVo v. Verizon – $250 million, plus future royalties.
  • Stac Electronics v. Microsoft – $120 million jury verdict.
  • Immersion v. Sony – After the jury verdict of $82 million, plaintiff was paid more than $150 million.
  • Texas Instruments v. Samsung – Settlement over $1 billion from ITC and district court actions (co-lead counsel).

Mr. Chu was lead counsel for the defendant in one of the “Top Defense Verdicts” of 2010, Linear Technology v. Novellus Systems,in which Irell secured a unanimous jury verdict in favor of Novellus on all of the plaintiff’s causes of action – including breach of contract and lack of good faith and fair dealing.  Mr. Chu was also lead counsel for the alleged infringer in one of the “Top Ten Defense Verdicts for 2005,” Ultratech Stepper Inc. v. ASML, in which the jury found plaintiff’s patent invalid by clear and convincing evidence, and in Boole & Babbage v. Candle Corporation in the first trial involving a patent on computer software in 1986, where the jury also invalidated the patent.

Chambers & Partners describes Irell & Manella LLP as having the “greatest depth of any law firm in the country” in patent, copyright and trademark matters. Although we are located in Southern California, clients from all over the world rely on us for counseling, transactions and litigation involving patents, copyrights and trademarks. This includes coordinating international trademark portfolios, analyzing patents, and advising on complex copyright questions. Our transactional attorneys have substantial expertise in transactions where intellectual property is a key corporate asset. Our litigators handle all facets of intellectual property litigation and are often hired as special appellate counsel in IP cases. Additional information about our expertise in these areas is available at IP Litigation and IP Transactions on our website.
Morgan Chu, named one of the “Top Ten Trial Lawyers” in the nation by The National Law Journal, was also named “Top Intellectual Property Lawyer” by Chambers and Partners. David Nimmer, the author of Nimmer on Copyright and an internationally recognized copyright expert, is of counsel at our firm and a frequent lecturer on copyright law. Jane Shay Wald, named one of the Top 30 Intellectual Property Lawyers in California, heads our trademark practice group. We have 21 lawyers who are registered to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Our firm is known for its rigorous selection of lawyers. We insist on outstanding academic credentials, but we also place a premium on creativity, experience, and common sense. We are dedicated to creating a collegial environment in which lawyers at all stages of their careers can flourish and enjoy the practice of law.
By developing lawyers who combine specialized expertise with broad-based legal knowledge, and by training new lawyers to undertake significant responsibility early in their careers, we are able to achieve outstanding results without overstaffing. Our firm is big enough to handle the largest and most complex matters, but small enough to maintain excellence at every level.
Irell is managed conservatively without debt with the goal of stability regardless of economic conditions. In The American Lawyer 2013 report on the 200 largest law firms in the country, three financial metrics are examined and Irell is in the top five percent nationally in all three categories.
Morgan Chu is widely acclaimed by both clients and peers as “one of the top patent lawyers in the country!” He is a well-known figure in complex litigation, and is particularly praised by his clients for his outstanding knowledge of case law.
Chambers USA, 2014