Terrence P. McMahon

  • Lecturer in Law


  • JD cum laude Santa Clara University School of Law 1976
  • BS Santa Clara University 1972


Terrence P. McMahon is an experienced trial lawyer and partner in the law firm of McDermott Will & Emery LLP and is based in the Firm's Silicon Valley office.  Terry focuses his practice on patent, copyright, trade secret, trade dress, trademark and other high stakes, “bet the company” litigation.  He is a member of the Firm's Executive and Management Committees.

Terry has been widely recognized by the legal and business communities, having been named a worldwide leader of IP in Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business (2001-2012), recognized by Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business (2004-2012), recognized in the 2009, 2011 and 2013 editions of The Best Lawyers in America for IP and commercial litigation, recognized in the Daily Journal's Top 75 Intellectual Property Litigators from 2008 to 2012, recognized in the 2007 edition of Who’s Who Legal: California for IP, recognized in The Legal 500 United States for patent litigation (2009-2012), recognized as one of the leading intellectual property lawyers in the California Lawyer “Best in the West” feature, recognized as a litigation star by Benchmark: Litigation (2009-2012) and has been selected for inclusion in Super Lawyers–Northern California edition for intellectual property litigation. He was also recognized in the 2011 edition of IAM Patent Litigation 250- The World's Leading Patent Litigators and the 2012 edition of IAM Patent 1000: The World’s Leading Patent Practitioners. Terry was selected to serve on the faculty of the 2010 Sedona Conference, the premier IP convocation.  Managing IP has recognized Terry as a 2013 IP Star.

Terry has more than 30 years of trial experience representing technology heavyweights including American Express, Aristocrat Technologies, Creative Labs, Extreme Networks, Fairchild, Fresenius Medical, General Electric, Logitech, Qualcomm Incorporated, Seagate Technology, Silicon Image and Tercica, Inc./Genentech on “bet the company” cases taking on major technology companies.

A well-known leader in his field, Terry frequently lectures and provides live demonstrations on trial practice and computer law issues. He has served as a faculty member and presenter at the annual Sedona Conference on Patent Litigation for several years. At the October 2010 Sedona Conference, he spoke on “Patent Value: Entitlement to (& Finding) a Level Playing Field,” “Ownership & Standing,” “Effective Jury Trials: Winning & Keeping a Verdict” and “Venue & Jurisdiction: Trial Court & Federal Court.”  Terry participated on a panel for the Practising Law Institute, entitled “Demonstration of a Direct and Cross-Examination of a Technical Expert Contending for Obviousness.”  He also spoke on “Enforcement Provisions in IP Settlements” at the Silicon Valley Association of General Counsel 20th Annual All Hands Meeting.

Terry also has presented before the State Bar of California, the Association of Business Trial Lawyers, the Bar Association of San Francisco, the Los Angeles County Bar Association, PricewaterhouseCoopers Intellectual Property Leadership Forum, the Santa Clara County Bar Association, the Hastings Center for Trial and Appellate Advocacy and the Intellectual Property Inns of Court, among other organizations.

He serves as an adjunct professor of law teaching intellectual property litigation techniques at Santa Clara University’s Law School and also presents trial practice demonstrations at Stanford Law School.  Additionally, Terry has authored numerous articles on intellectual property and trial topics.

Terry is a member of the Munich Intellectual Property Law Center (MIPLC) Board of Trustees and taught the MIPLC course, “Enforcement of Patents in US District Court and the International Trade Commission” in November 2012 and June 2012.

Terry is admitted to practice in California, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, the U.S. District Courts for the Northern, Central and Southern Districts of California and the Eastern District of Texas. He is a member of the Santa Clara County Bar Association and the American Bar Association.