Thomas A. James
“All human interactions are acts of translation; we seek to understand and be understood. Translating the thoughts and ideas of engineers and scientists is the core of what I do.”

Thomas A. JamesPatent Agent

120 South LaSalle Street
Suite 1600
Chicago, IL 60603VCard
312.577.7007 fax
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B.S., Electrical Engineering, University of North Dakota, 2010


Technical Areas

Bar & Court Admissions

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Thomas A. James prepares and prosecutes patent applications primarily related to the field of electrical engineering, advancing and protecting the value of the clients’ technologies. He also assists with litigation matters by conducting invalidity searches, drafting claim charts, and supporting the attorney team.

Tom began his intellectual property law career at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office where he served as a patent examiner in the field of electrical engineering for over four years. While there, he negotiated solutions to advance patentability and expedite prosecution of patent applications. After leaving the USPTO, Tom gained experience in the transactional IP space, where he helped advise clients regarding potential patent acquisitions and sales, identifying the strengths and weaknesses of their current patent portfolios.

Drawing on his electrical engineering background, Tom has served clients ranging from the individual inventor to Fortune 50 companies in a variety of industries and technologies, including these:

  • Semiconductors
  • Telecommunications
  • Computer software
  • Image analysis
  • Advanced automotive electronics
  • Streaming media
  • Biomedical technologies
  • E-commerce
  • RFID technologies
  • Fleet management
  • Watermarking and fingerprinting
  • Device connectivity

Tom’s experience at the USPTO, and previously as a teaching assistant helping undergraduates develop hardware and software solutions to engineering problems, honed his ability to effectively communicate complex technical information in easily understandable terms.


  • "The Difficulties of Being Obvious: Practical Advice for Overcoming Obviousness Rejections," Fitch, Even, Tabin & Flannery Webinar, with Stephen S. Favakeh, June 22, 2017.
  • Intellectual Property Law Association of Chicago
  • National Association of Patent Practitioners

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