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McDonnell Boehnen Hulbert & Berghoff LLP

At a Glance


“There is a lot of flexibility”

“The people”

“General partnership transparency”


“The high hours requirement”

“It is hard to get enough work and training”

“Bonuses are lacking”

About McDonnell Boehnen Hulbert & Berghoff LLP

McDonnell Boehnen Hulbert & Berghoff is an intellectual property law firm with offices in Illinois, California, and North Carolina. The firm's client list includes Fortune 100 companies, mid-size companies, start-ups, and academic institutions.

Speaking the Language of Law and Science

MBHB's practice areas encompass all aspects of intellectual property law. Approximately 50 percent of the firm's practice is devoted to patent and trademark prosecution and counseling; the other 50 percent is devoted to litigation. MBHB attorneys are experienced in the procurement, licensing, enforcement and defense of patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, and unfair competition actions in a number of technological disciplines and product categories including biotechnology, business methods, chemical, electrical, mechanical and materials, pharmaceuticals and diagnostics, software, and telecommunications.

To best protect its clients' technology assets, 100 percent of the firm’s attorneys and technical advisors hold science or engineering degrees. Of these, nearly 50 percent of the firm's attorneys and technical advisors hold PhDs or other advanced degrees.

IP Pros

Proving that IP boutiques can hang with the BigLaw folks, MBHB is regularly recognized in the U.S. News-Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” at the national and metropolitan levels. At the national level and Chicago-metro level, the firm ranked in Biotechnology Law, Litigation-Intellectual Property, Litigation-Patent, Patent Law, and Trademark Law.

In addition, MBHB is favorably ranked among top law firms in annual editions of Chambers USA in the category of Intellectual Property. Chambers USA determined that MBHB is composed of “outstanding and consistently excellent patent lawyers” and that the “firm is very strategic and very practical.” MBHB was recognized as “doing a good job in biotechnology and chemicals with some fine lawyers.”

Keeping Up in Tech

Although some lawyers shy away from technology, the attorneys at MBHB are using it to their advantage. Partners Dr. Donald Zuhn, Jr., Dr. Kevin Noonan, and Dr. Andrew Williams co-author the Patent Docs blog (, and other MBHB practitioners contribute as well. The blog features recent developments in patent law, including patent case rulings, and information on new biotech and pharma cases and was featured by the ABA Journal in its Blawg 100.

McDonnell Boehnen Hulbert & Berghoff LLP

300 South Wacker Drive
Chicago, IL 60606
Phone: (312) 913-0001

Firm Stats

Managing Partner: Grantland G. Drutchas
Recruiting Chair: James V. Suggs
Total No. Attorneys 2019:
50 - 100

Base Salary

1st year: $180,000
2nd year: $185,000
3rd year: $195,000
4th year: $210,000
5th year: $220,000
6th year: $230,000
7th year: $240,000
Summer associate: $3,475/week

Summer Program

Summer Associate Offers:
1 out of 1 (2L) (2017)

Employment Contact

Kara M. Fromme
Director of Legal Recruiting & Development
(312) 935-2350

Major Office Locations

Chicago, IL (HQ)
Durham, NC
Mountain View, CA

Major Departments

Business Methods
Mechanical & Materials
Pharmaceuticals & Diagnostics
PTAB Trials
Trademark, Unfair Competition & Advertising Law