FacultyFaculty/Author Profile

Karen A. Butcher

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP

Washington, DC, USA

Karen A. Butcher is a partner and a practice group leader in Morgan Lewis's Intellectual Property Practice. Ms. Butcher's practice focuses on business transactions and strategic counseling regarding brands and related intellectual property.

Ms. Butcher's IP transactional practice includes mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, distribution agreements, licensing agreements, strategic alliances, and corporate reorganizations. She regularly advises clients regarding IP ownership and licensing structures, whether in the context of acquisitions, financing arrangements, or business and tax planning. She develops and implements cost-effective strategies for evaluating IP assets to be acquired or divested to maximize value and minimize deficiencies, and she advises clients regarding the integration of acquired assets.

Ms. Butcher's IP counseling experience includes complex contract disputes, including matters involving parallel imports and infringement. She regularly advises clients regarding international brand strategy. Her international experience ranges from developing and implementing cost-effective approaches to multijurisdictional clearance, protection, and enforcement of global brands, to handling the IP aspects of cross-border transactions and licensing arrangements. She has a particular background in the protection of nontraditional brand rights and matters involving the interplay of trademark rights with other forms of protection, such as patents, designs, copyrights, geographical indications, and other concepts.

Ms. Butcher regularly advises clients regarding advertising and marketing strategies, including online sales and the use of social media. She has advised clients regarding claims for false advertising under the U.S. Lanham Act, as well as compliance with U.S. Federal Trade Commission and state consumer protection regulations. She drafts and negotiates innovative arrangements for brand development, marketing, and promotion, including licensing, sponsorship, product placement, brand integration, celebrity spokesperson, merchandising, and cross-promotional agreements, as well as creative services agreements with advertising, branding, promotions, and ideation agencies.
Ms. Butcher regularly presents on intellectual property topics. She moderated a panel on "Global Perspectives on Trade Dress Protection" at the AIPLA Mid-Winter Meeting in January 2009 and recently spoke on IP issues in transactions at the Practising Law Institute's "Acquiring or Selling the Privately Held Company" and at the ABA International Section's Fall 2009 Conference.

Her recent publications include the article "Optimising Brand Value Through Strategic Tax Planning" in Brands in the Boardroom 2007 (supplement to IAM Magazine) and a chapter on cost-effective strategies for addressing IP issues in global advertising/marketing clearance in Inside the Minds: Settlements and Negotiations for Advertising and Marketing Law (Aspatore Books, 2006).

Ms. Butcher is admitted to practice in the District of Columbia, New York, and Virginia.

  • University of Virginia School of Law, 1993, J.D.
  • University of Virginia McIntire School of Commerce, 1988, B.S. (Marketing)
Honors + Affiliations
  • Member, Board of Directors, International Trademark Association
  • Listed, Expert Guide's World's Leading Women in Business Law (Inaugural 2010 edition)
  • Listed, World Trademark Review 1000 (Inaugural 2011 edition)

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