Adam R. Hess

Hess Adam

Adam Hess is an intellectual property litigator and counselor. Adam’s experience spans many industries, and he has served as lead counsel in a variety of U.S. and international venues. He has especially strong credentials in Section 337 investigations at the International Trade Commission (ITC), and has extensive experience as lead counsel in federal district court litigation and international arbitration. 

Adam has defended numerous clients against subpoenas related to ITC investigations. He works with Customs and Border Protection on matters concerning enforcement of ITC exclusion orders, and has served as lead counsel in major arbitration before the International Chamber of Commerce in Europe and before several U.S. arbitration bodies.

Adam counsels various U.S., European, and Asian clients on portfolio management, licensing, due diligence, and patent prosecution across a range of industries, including general chemistry, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and alternative energy sources. He also has handled several inter partes review (IPR) proceedings before the U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB).

Before joining Venable, Adam was a partner at another AmLaw 100 law firm, where he served as a local office managing partner, hiring partner, and IP litigation group leader. Prior to entering law school, Adam spent several years working on processes to improve the production of nitrocellulose at Hercules Chemicals, supervising the production of ABS plastic materials at Borg Warner Chemicals, and overseeing production of organic herbicides and insecticides at FMC Corporation.


Representative Matters

  • Member of a team managing an intricate patent infringement litigation case involving movable electrified office panels. The team secured a damages award of $211.5 million for their client against the most prominent office furniture manufacturer in the world. At the time, this was believed to be the second-highest damages award in patent litigation history
  • Represented an automotive parts supplier named as a respondent in a Section 337 investigation at the ITC, concerning after-market replacement parts for automobiles; successfully resolved prior to hearing
  • Represented an international manufacturer accused of infringing patents related to radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology and decisively invalidated all relevant claims
  • Represented a cellular telephone manufacturer in an appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, related to the scope and propriety of an Exclusion Order issued in a Section 337 investigation at the ITC; won on appeal, and this landmark case will have a far-reaching effect on the ITC’s ability to issue exclusion orders against so-called downstream products
  • Favorably resolved a trademark litigation involving hair care products
  • Achieved significant results defending a client and asserting counterclaims in a major ICC arbitration related to intellectual property matters
  • Represented a consumer electronics manufacturer named as a respondent in a Section 337 investigation at the ITC concerning automotive navigation systems; successfully resolved prior to hearing
  • Obtained dismissal of a patent infringement lawsuit relating to polymer manufacturing technology on behalf of an international manufacturing company
  • Represented a computer systems company in federal district court and resolved a lawsuit involving numerous claims, including theft of trade secrets, unfair competition, and violation of a non-compete agreement
  • Resolved a patent infringement lawsuit involving Internet distribution technology on behalf of an automotive accessory manufacturer in federal court
  • Represented a leading mosquito trap manufacturer in a series of patent infringement lawsuits, culminating in an action at the ITC and in Federal Bankruptcy Court. At the ITC, one respondent agreed to a consent order, removing its lead product from the marketplace. Another respondent defaulted, but when unable to proceed against it in U.S. District Court due to the respondent’s bankruptcy filing, he pursued claims in Federal Bankruptcy Court. The Bankruptcy Court awarded his client possession of the respondent’s entire infringing product inventory, all of its intellectual property rights to the infringing product, and a significant cash amount
  • Obtained a favorable result for a cosmetics company in a patent infringement case against a former employee and the employee’s new company

Matters before the ITC

  • In re Certain Height-Adjustable Desk Platforms (Inv. No. 337-TA-1125)
  • In re Certain Height-Adjustable Desk Platforms (Inv. No. 337-TA-1054)
  • In re Certain Krill Oil Products (Inv. No. 337-TA-1019)
  • In re Certain Height-Adjustable Desk Platforms (Inv. No. 337-TA-992)
  • In re Certain Height-Adjustable Desk Platforms (Inv. No. 337-TA-970)
  • In re Certain Laser Abraded Denim Garments (Inv. No. 337-TA-930)
  • In re Certain Beverage Brewin Capsules (Inv. No. 337-TA-929)

Federal district court matters

  • Varidesk LLC v. Hangzhou Landa Crafts Co., Ltd. et al. (NJD: 2-19-cv-00095)
  • Varidesk LLC v. Ningbo Loctek Visual Tech. Corp., et al. (TXND: 3-17-cv-00907)
  • Varidesk LLC v. Lumi Legend Corp., et al. (TXND: 3-17-cv-00904)
  • Varidesk LLC v. Nortek, Inc. et al. (TXND: 3-16-cv-00773)
  • KHN Solutions Inc. v. Vertisense Inc. (CAND: 4-16-cv-00962)
  • Aker BioMarine Antarctic AS v. Olympic Holding AS, et al. (DED: 1-16-cv-00035)
  • Varidesk LLC v. Brunswick Corp. (TXND: 3-15-cv-03120)
  • RevoLaze LLC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (OHND: 1-14-cv-01797)
  • RevoLaze LLC v. Roberto Cavalli SpA d/b/a/ Just Cavalli (OHND: 1-14-cv-01819)
  • Ivera Medical Corp. v. Hospira, Inc. (CASD: 3-14-cv-01345)
  • Hospira, Inc. v. Ivera Medical Corp. (NJD: 1-14-cv-03513)
  • Sunless, Inc. v. Heartland Tanning, Inc. (MOWD: 4-13-cv-01066)
  • Sun Style International, LLC v. Sunless, Inc. (KYWD: 1-12-cv-00179)
  • Mycone Dental Supply Co., Inc. v. Creative Nail Design, Inc. (CAND: 3-12-cv-00747)
  • Mycone Dental Supply Co., Inc. v. Creative Nail Design, Inc. (NJD: 1-11-cv-04380)
  • Creative Nail Design, Inc. v. Mycone Dental Supply Co., Inc. (CASD: 3-11-cv-01658)




  • J.D. George Washington University Law School 1992
  • Giles S. Rich Moot Court Competition, second place in national finals
  • B.S. Lehigh University 1987

Bar Admissions

  • District of Columbia
  • Virginia
  • Pennsylvania (inactive)
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

Professional Memberships and Activities

  • Member, American Bar Association
  • Member, American Institute of Chemical Engineers
  • Member, American Intellectual Property Law Association 
  • Member, District of Columbia Bar Association
  • Member, Federal Circuit Bar Association 
  • Member, Intellectual Property Owners Association, ITC Committee
  • Member, ITC Trial Lawyers Association
  • Member, Virginia Bar Association
  • Member, Virginia State Bar Association
  • Writes and speaks on matters related to Section 337 investigations at the ITC; in 2011 was part of a group from the ITC Trial Lawyers Association making presentations in numerous Chinese cities on conducting Section 337 investigations
  • Speaks annually at the ITC Committee’s Advanced Practice Seminar


  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America for Litigation, Intellectual Property, Litigation; Patent, and Patent Law, 2006-2020
  • Recognized in Chambers USA, Intellectual Property, Washington, DC, 2008-2011
  • Recognized in Chambers USA, Intellectual Property, Virginia, 2004-2007
  • Named to IAM Patent 1000: The World's Leading Patent Practitioners, 2017-2019
  • Recognized in Super Lawyers Business Edition, IP Litigation, Washington, DC, 2013
  • Included in Washington, DC Super Lawyers, 2006-2013, 2015, 2017 - 2019
  • Included in Virginia Super Lawyers, 2006-2012
  • Named one of Washington, DC's Legal Elite in Intellectual Property by Virginia Business Magazine


Pro Bono

  • Represents veterans before the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims


  • Chair, Arlington Free Clinic, 2018 - present; member, board of directors, 2015 - present