Wil L Rao

(The following information was supplied by the firm)


Wil Rao is a seasoned patent lawyer and shareholder at McAndrews, Held & Malloy, Ltd., a firm known for its exceptional, hands-on IP practice. He is recognized by both IAM Patent 1000 and Managing Intellectual Property’s IP Stars. IAM said clients turn to Wil “when victory in a dispute is a commercial imperative.” It also noted that he “maintains many long-term connections with those he represents, not least as a result of his ability to productively and commercially address any patent issue.”

He has been with the firm since 1997 and counsels clients ranging from Fortune 500 corporations to small startups and individuals. His practice focuses on all facets of IP, including IP litigation and procurement, as well as technology transfer, licensing, and IP strategy. He frequently writes and presents on these topics in media publications and conferences throughout the world. He leverages both litigation and procurement mindsets to strategically counsel clients, an uncommon skill combination that has delivered exceptional results.

Wil is a trial-experienced litigator.  He handled all facets of complex litigation, including pre-filing investigations to examining witnesses at trial. His court successes range from patent jury trials – including one that defined the written description law – to a landmark trade secret case under section 337 proceedings before the U.S. International Trade Commission. His cases have included both single patent, single forum cases and multi-venue, multi-IP, multi-party litigations that proceed in numerous countries. Wil’s appellate practice concentrates on the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

In procurement, Wil harnesses his litigation experience to provide forward-thinking strategic counseling in patent prosecution, written opinions, licensing, and inter partes/post-grant reviews. His work here has involved a wide range of technology areas, including medical devices, gaming equipment, sporting goods and equipment, HVAC, railway equipment, heavy machinery, baby/children’s products, consumer electronics, graphical user interfaces, furniture, hardware and tools, dental equipment, pigments, lubricants, and product design.



  • Chicago-Kent College of Law, J.D., with honors
  • Washington University, M.S.E.
  • Washington University, B.S., cum laude


  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • Western District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

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