Bradford P. Lyerla



Mr. Lyerla is a counselor and trusted advisor to his clients concerning competition and intellectual property disputes. He is best known for representing clients in patent, trade secret, and unfair competition litigation.  Mr. Lyerla also has a substantial practice in criminal defense trials and appeals.

He has tried numerous cases and appeals representing such companies as Hospira, Amazon, Viskase, General Dynamics, Quaker Oats, MCI, AM International, Solo Cup Company, Oster Communications, Monosol, Business Records Corporation, US Robotics and others. He also has resolved numerous disputes through negotiated business arrangements or summary dispositions in court for such clients as Wolfram Research, Charter Communications, General Electric, Shopko, Chris Craft, Coherus Biosciences and more.  His litigation has involved a wide variety of technologies, including life sciences, applied mathematics, communications, software, computing, medical devices, chemicals, food science, manufacturing, consumer products, aeronautics and pharmaceuticals.

Mr. Lyerla is respected in his field. The IAM Patent 1000 (2018) describes Mr. Lyerla: “A born-and-bred trial lawyer who enjoys the confidence of influential decision makers, Mr. Lyerla continues to percolate in important cases.”  His accomplishments in the court and boardroom have earned him a Band One rating in Chambers USA, where he has been described as “enormously, enormously talented” and “a brilliant strategist.” In the 2019 edition of Chambers USA, Mr. Lyerla is described as having a “very strong reputation” and being a “very sophisticated and effective patent litigator.”  He is also adept counsel for misappropriation of trade secrets claims.  He is included in The Best Lawyers in America – 2014-present (Litigation-Intellectual Property). He has been selected as a Super Lawyer in Illinois repeatedly, including as one of the top 100 lawyers in Illinois multiple times. He has been selected as a member of the Leading Lawyers Network for intellectual property litigation.  He is regularly listed in Who’s Who in the WorldWho’s Who in America and Who’s Who in the Law. Mr. Lyerla is Martindale AV Preeminent rated, Martindale-Hubbell’s highest peer recognition for ethical standards and legal ability.

Mr. Lyerla is a thought leader in patent and trade secret litigation. He regularly speaks and publishes on issues in patent and trade secret litigation. He is Editor-in-Chief and a Principal Author of Antitrust Issues in Intellectual Property Law, a new book published by the ABA in May 2016.  He was a member of the advisory committee of lawyers and judges in the Northern District of Illinois that wrote the local rules for patent litigation now adopted by that court. He is a contributing author to Patent Claim Construction in the Federal Circuit published by West. He was editor in chief of the ABA publication Intellectual Property Litigation for 15 years and now serves on the editorial board. Mr. Lyerla’s article titled “Understand the Two Approaches to Claim Construction” was cited and quoted by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit as secondary authority in its 2012 opinion in MySpace, Inc. v. GraphOn Corporation, 2011-1149 (Fed. Cir. March 2, 2012).

Mr. Lyerla is committed to diversity in the workplace and in life. He is equally committed to pro bono work. He has tried numerous felony trials for the indigent. He has received the John Powers Crowley Justice Award for his pro bono work.  Currently, Mr. Lyerla receives indigent criminal defense assignments from the Public Defender’s Office in Berrien County, MI and the State Appellate Defender’s Office in Lansing, MI.

Education, Professional Activities, and Recognition


  • University of Illinois College of Law, J.D., 1980; Honors; Member and Staff Editor, Law Review
  • University of Illinois, B.A.; Phi Beta Kappa; Donald W. Doerscher Memorial Prize


  • Illinois, 1980
  • Michigan, 2019

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
  • Illinois Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of California
  • U.S. District Court, District of Colorado
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana
  • U.S. District Court, District of Nebraska
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan


  • American Research Corporation
    American’s Leading Lawyers
  • Best Lawyers in America
    Litigation-Intellectual Property, 2014-present
    Litigation-Patent, 2019-present
  • Chambers Global
    Intellectual Property: Patent (USA), 2018, 2019, 2020
  • Chambers USA
    Intellectual Property (Band One), 2010-present
  • IAM
    Patent 1000, 2018-present
    Global Leaders, 2021
  • Illinois Super Lawyer
    Intellectual Property Litigation, 2005-present
    Top 100 Illinois Super Lawyers, 2013-2015, 2017-present
  • People’s Uptown Law Center
    John Powers Crowley Justice Award
  • Leading Lawyers Network
    Commercial Litigation, 2004-2019
    Intellectual Property Law, 2004-2019
    Patent Law, 2004-2019
    Trade Secrets/Unfair Competition
  • Managing Intellectual Property
    IP Star, 2013-present
  • Who’s Who
    Who’s Who in America, 1997-present
    Who’s Who in American Law, 1992-2010
    Who’s Who in Finance and Industry, 1998-1999
    Who’s Who in the Midwest, 1999-2000
    Who’s Who in the World, 1995-1997; 2001; 2004-2005; 2009; 2012-present
    Who’s Who Legal: Patents, 2016, 2019


  • Innocence Project
  • Radio Harbor Country, WHRC 106.7 and WRHZ 93.5, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization
    Board of Directors
  • Heartland Alliance, Chicago, IL,
    Board of Directors, 1991-1995
  • North Suburban Board Traveller’s and Immigrants Aid, Wilmette, IL
    Board of Directors, 1987-1996
  • Youth Service Project of Humboldt Park Chicago, IL
    Board Secretary, 1988-1993
  • University of Illinois
    President’s Council
  • Cribbett Society, University of Illinois College of Law
    Founding Member

Service to the Bar

  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • National Legal Aid and Defender Association
  • Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan
  • American Bar Association
    Editor at Large, Intellectual Property Litigation Newsletter, 2005-present
    Editor in Chief, Intellectual Property Litigation Newsletter, 1990-2005
  • American Bar Foundation
    Life Fellow
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Federal Circuit Bar Association
  • Illinois State Bar Association
    Chair, Intellectual Property Section Council, 1996-1997
  • Intellectual Property Law Association of Chicago
    Chair, Antitrust Committee, 2009-2013
    Board of Managers, 2007-2009
    Chair, Litigation Commitee, 2005-2007
  • Northern District of Illinois Local Patent Rules Committee
    Advisory Group, 2009-2017
  • Illinois State Bar Association Criminal Law Section Council