- University of Virginia School of Law (J.D., 2007); Journal of Social Policy and the Law
- University of San Diego (B.A., Psychology and Communication Studies, 2004), summa cum laude; Phi Beta Kappa
Rebecca Carson is a partner in the Newport Beach office, where she is a member of the litigation and intellectual property practice groups. Her practice encompasses a wide range of commercial litigation matters, with a focus on complex disputes involving patent infringement, trademarks, contractual issues, employment matters, and business torts. Ms. Carson has experience litigating and counseling clients in a variety of industries, including the computer networking, software, semiconductor, medical device, pharmaceutical, healthcare, and real estate industries. Over the course of her ten years at the firm, she has gained significant trial experience, including recent trials in federal court and at the International Trade Commission. Ms. Carson also has experience arguing before the Federal Circuit and the Patent Trial and Appeal Board.
Ms. Carson was recognized as one of the Top 40 Under 40 Lawyers in California in 2018 by the Daily Journal and as one of three 2018 Rising Stars in technology by Law360. She was also named to Benchmark Litigation’s Under 40 Hot List in 2016-2018 and to the Southern California Rising Stars list by Super Lawyers magazine each year since 2013.
Ms. Carson is co-hiring partner for the firm's Newport Beach office and an active member of the firm’s Pro Bono Committee. In addition, she has devoted a significant amount of time to the community. The Laguna Beach City Council has appointed Ms. Carson to various advisory committees since 2011. She currently serves on the city’s View Restoration Committee, which adjudicates view claims submitted by property owners to restore pre-existing views that are alleged to be significantly impaired by vegetation. Prior to that, Ms. Carson served two terms on the Parking, Transportation & Circulation Committee (including as the elected chairperson of the committee in 2015) and also participated in the inaugural class of Leadership Laguna in 2016.
Ms. Carson received her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law, where she served on the articles review board of the Journal of Social Policy and the Law, was a semi-finalist in the annual Lile Moot Court Competition, and was awarded as one of the Best Oral Advocates of her first year class. She earned her B.A. in Psychology and Communication Studies, summa cum laude, from the University of San Diego.
- Mobile Telecommunication, LLC (M Tel) v. Juniper Networks, Inc. (E.D. Tex./D. Del.): Ms. Carson is currently representing Juniper in a multi-district patent litigation in which MTel asserted three patents relating to Wi-Fi technology. Prior to suing Juniper, MTel had obtained a multi-million dollar jury verdict on some of the same patents against a different defendant. MTel originally brought its claims against Juniper in the Eastern District of Texas, but the case was transferred to the District of Delaware after Juniper and several other defendants successfully petitioned to have the cases consolidated in a Multi-District Litigation in Delaware. After being transferred to Delaware, Juniper secured a favorable claim construction order, which prompted MTel to agree to dismiss one of the patents with prejudice and stipulate to non-infringement and invalidity of the two remaining patents. Ms. Carson argued before the MDL Panel and at the claim construction hearing. The case is currently on appeal.
- Immersion v. Apple (ITC): Ms. Carson is currently representing Immersion in multi-patent action pending before the International Trade Commission. The dispute involves several Immersion patents relating to tactile feedback technologies that have been asserted against Apple devices.
- Koninklijke Philips N.V. et al. v. ZOLL Medical Corp. (D. Mass.): Ms. Carson was part of the Irell team that defeated a $217-million damages claim for ZOLL’s infringement of defibrillator technology patents, and secured a jury verdict of no willful infringement. Irell was retained for the damages phase after ZOLL was found to infringe in an earlier liability trial handled by another law firm. Irell initially secured multiple appellate victories for ZOLL on the liability verdict, including overturning the jury verdict that several asserted patent claims were not invalid as anticipated. On remand, Philips sought $217 million on its infringement claims against ZOLL, and ZOLL sought $3.3 million on its infringement counterclaims against Philips. The jury awarded $10.4 million to Philips and $3.3 million to ZOLL, resulting in a net verdict of only $7.1 million to Philips. The case settled shortly after the jury trial.
- Koninklijke Philips N.V. et al. v. ZOLL Lifecor Corp. (W.D. Penn.): Ms. Carson represented ZOLL Lifecor in a patent infringement case in the Western District of Pennsylvania involving external defibrillator technology. The case settled shortly after Irell won an important Daubert motion excluding critical parts of the opinion of Philips’s damages expert and also defeated a $217-million damages claim against ZOLL Lifecor’s parent company at a jury trial.
- Nipro Corporation v. NxStage, Inc. (PTAB): Ms. Carson represented NxStage in an IPR proceeding on a patent relating to dialysis technology brought by a competitor. The Irell team secured complete denial of the IPR petition as to all challenged claims on claim construction grounds.
- Brixham Solutions LTD v. Juniper Networks, Inc. (N.D. Cal.): Ms. Carson represented Juniper in a patent lawsuit in the Northern District of California in which Brixham asserted a number of patents relating to router technologies. Juniper convinced the PTAB to institute inter partes review proceedings on all asserted claims. The PTAB ultimately found that the patents were invalid, and the Federal Circuit upheld that decision. Ms. Carson handled the arguments before both the PTAB and the Federal Circuit.
- Unite Here Local 11 v. Anaheim Arena (O.C. Superior Ct.): Ms. Carson represented Anaheim Arena in a lawsuit brought by a union to enforce various provisions of the Janitor Displacement Opportunity Act, which the Union had lobbied to make temporarily applicable to food service employees of entertainment venues. The union voluntarily dismissed the action shortly after Anaheim Arena defeated the union’s request for a preliminary injunction. Ms. Carson also represented Anaheim Arena in a related class action, which was dismissed at the pleading stage.
- Infineon Technologies v. Atmel Corporation (D. Del.): Ms. Carson represented Atmel in a multi-patent lawsuit in the United States District of Delaware in which Infineon and Atmel asserted claims and counterclaims against each other relating to semiconductor technologies. After a successful claim construction hearing, the matter was resolved.
- GraphOn Corporation v. Juniper Networks, Inc. (E.D. Tex./N.D. Cal.): Ms. Carson represented Juniper in two separate patent infringement cases brought by GraphOn involving several firewall-related patents. Juniper successfully moved to transfer the cases from the Eastern District of Texas to the Northern District of California. Subsequently, both cases were stayed pending reexamination of the patents-in-suit by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (PTO). After the PTO cancelled all of the claims asserted against Juniper, the case settled on mutually satisfactory terms.
- Enhanced Security Research/Altitude Capital v. Juniper Networks, Inc. (E.D. Tex./D. Del.): Ms. Carson also represented Juniper in a series of cases involving a patent dispute with Enhanced Security Research (ESR) and Altitude Capital, and secured a successful settlement for Juniper. Under the terms of the public settlement agreement, ESR and Altitude received no monetary payment from Juniper, which was granted a full release, a covenant not to sue, and a license to ESR’s and Altitude’s entire patent portfolios (including the patents-in-suit) in exchange for Juniper’s agreement to walk away from the nearly five-year litigation without continuing to seek attorneys’ fees and to discontinue its participation in the appeal of the pending reexamination proceedings.
- United States v. Mr. and Mrs. V.: Ms. Carson provided pro bono representation for an immigrant family in Los Angeles Immigration Court on an application for cancellation of removal. After an evidentiary hearing that included testimony from the couple and their two children, the judge issued a positive final ruling which allowed the entire family to remain in the United States after three appeals and ten years of litigation in the immigration courts.
- RRLH, Inc. v. Barto (C.D. Cal.): Ms. Carson has counseled RRLH on a number of trademark issues, including the enforcement of a consent judgment that prohibited Barto from infringing RRLH’s trademarks. In response to RRLH’s motion, the court ruled that Barto was in contempt of the consent judgment order and awarded RRLH monetary damages and attorneys’ fees. The damages award—including the award of attorneys’ fees—was upheld by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Publications & Presentations
- "Equitable Estoppel Case Out Of Touch With Reality," Daily Journal, April 17, 2013
- “Ethically Speaking: Rule 502 and Clawback Agreements,” 54 Orange County Lawyer (2012) (co-author, with Lisa Glasser)
- “Ethically Speaking: The Rules of ‘Friending,’” 53 Orange County Lawyer (2011)
- “Encoding Conditions and Personality Effects on a Recognition Task,” poster presentation at the 84th Annual meeting of the Western Psychological Association, Phoenix, Arizona (2004) (co-author, with Vincent Stretch, Annette Taylor, Erin Cipolla, and Vanessa Headley)
Professional & Community Activities
- View Restoration Committee, Laguna Beach City Council (2017-2018)
- Leadership Laguna (2016)
- Parking, Transportation & Circulation Committee, Laguna Beach City Council (2012-2015)
- PLC Advocates (2014-2015)
- Howard T. Markey Inn of Court
Bar & Court Admissions
- California, 2007
- Central District of California, 2008
- Northern District of California, 2009
- United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, 2009
- United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, 2010