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Larry Coats Gets Legal Elite Nod from Business NC Magazine

Chosen by the state’s lawyers, the legal elite listing recognizes NC's top attorneys

Coats and Bennett, P.L.L.C. is proud to announce that partner, Larry Coats, has been recognized as one of Business North Carolina's 2014 Legal Elite in Intellectual Property Law.  The honor, voted on by the state’s lawyers, recognizes the top attorneys in business-related categories and provides every active lawyer in the state the opportunity to participate. In addition, Coats received the most votes from area lawyers, ranking top in the Intellectual Property category.

With over 35 years of experience in intellectual property, including patent and trademark infringement ligation and patent preparation and prosecution, Coats has written and prosecuted over 1,000 patent applications.

"I am extremely proud of my friend and business partner, Larry Coats, for receiving this honor,” said David Bennett, managing partner Coats and Bennett, P.L.L.C. "Larry is always striving to provide the highest quality work for the benefit of his clients. That his peers recognize this and selected him among the 2014 Legal Elite for IP Law is a testament not only to the service he provides his clients, but to his standing in the legal community."

Coats is an engineering graduate of North Carolina State University and obtained his law degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a member of the American Intellectual Property Association, North Carolina Bar Association and Wake County Bar Association. Coats also serves on the Advisory Board for North Carolina State University's Biological and Agricultural Engineering Department.

For more information about the Legal Elite click here

Coats + Bennett, PLLC Hires New Patent Agent

Zheng Li, Ph.D., Joins Law Firm To Provide KnowledgeTo Help Clients Secure Rights

CARY, N.C. – Coats and Bennett, PLLC, an intellectual property law firm, has announced the hiring of Zheng Li as its newest patent agent. Li, who is registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), has already drafted several industry articles and patent applications.

Li has an in-depth knowledge of wireless communications as well as a solid understanding of several major 3G/4G wireless standards such as LTE. Li has been completing his post-doctoral research at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pa., where he is working on an advanced receiver design for vehicle-to-vehicle communications.

Li earned his Ph. D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Delaware. In addition to his doctorate, Li earned his B.E. and M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Huazhong University of Science and Technology in China.


“Zheng gives us additional depth in a key area of technology,” said David Bennett, managing partner at Coats and Bennett. “His experience with patents as well as his work with wireless communication will keep us on the cutting edge of wireless communications technology and patent protection.”

Coats + Bennett, PLLC Hires William G. Pagán

Former Master Inventor At IBM Will Join Law Firm,
Bringing Knowledge Of Intellectual Property And Patents

CARY, N.C. – Coats and Bennett, PLLC, an intellectual property law firm, has announced the hiring of William G. Pagán, an award-winning patent engineer, patent agent, systems management software developer and fourth-year evening student at North Carolina Central School of Law.

Pagán, who has most recently worked at IBM as a Master Inventor, has produced valuable intellectual property for patent protection based on industry trends and strategic goals. His inventions have led to more than 100 patent applications. As a result, IBM awarded Mr. Pagán its 2009 Inventor of the Year at Research Triangle Park. As a patent engineer supporting the monetization of IBM’s vast patent portfolio, Pagán worked on technologies ranging from consumer electronics to industrial equipment to gaming, media and Internet software. Pagán also comes to Coats and Bennett with more than a decade of experience in IBM’s System X server development business where he developed software solutions for individual blade servers, multi-node server clusters and entire datacenter management applications. Pagán’s leadership work on IBM’s Intel-based Thurley platforms in particular won him an Outstanding Achievement Award. Having already earned a master’s degree in computer science from North Carolina State University, Pagán is expected to graduate in the top 5% of his class from NCCU School of Law in 2014.

“We are excited for William to join our team,” said David Bennett, managing partner at Coats and Bennett. “Not only does he have experience as a patent engineer and agent, but we have no doubt that he will be a brilliant lawyer for us upon graduation.”

Coats And Bennett Paralegal Appointed Committee Co-Chair For Paralegal Division Of NCBA

Martha L. Blackman-Hughes Named Co-Chair For Publications
Committee For 2013-2014 Term

Coats and Bennett, PLLC, an intellectual property law firm, has announced that litigation paralegal Martha L. Blackman-Hughes has been appointed co-chair of the publications committee for the paralegal division of the North Carolina Bar Association for the 2013-2014 term. Blackman-Hughes, who primarily provides paralegal support for intellectual property litigation and Trademark Trial and Appeal Board proceedings, will help lead this committee whose function is to plan content and the editorial calendar for the division’s publication, Paralegal Perspectives. In addition to those duties, Blackman-Hughes and the committee are responsible for writing articles, securing authors to contribute articles, proofreading articles and other content, as well as providing or locating photos and graphics to illustrate the publication.

Blackman-Hughes, who has been a paralegal for 12 years and is a graduate of UNC Law School, also serves as treasurer for the North Carolina Paralegal Association and is a member of the National Association of Legal Assistants.

“I am excited about this opportunity to serve my fellow paralegals and to help support the growth of our profession,” said Blackman-Hughes. “Being a co-chair for the publications committee will provide me the avenue to do just that.”

Coats + Bennett, PLLC Attorney Edward Green To Speak At TIPLA Luncheon Discussion Feb. 19

Green To Discuss Divided Patent Infringement In The Akamai v. Limelight Case At Triangle Intellectual Property Law Association Event

Coats and Bennett, PLLC an intellectual property law firm, has announced that Edward Green, a partner in the firm, will speak at the Triangle Intellectual Property Law Association’s (TIPLA) luncheon at noon on Tuesday, Feb. 19 at Campbell Law School, located at 225 Hillsborough Street in Raleigh. The event will be an informal “lunch and learn” discussion about the status of divided patent infringement in light of the recent Akamai v. Limelight Networks case. This en banc Federal Circuit decision expanded the scope of liability for induced patent infringement of process, or method claims.

Green’s vast experience in digital electronics, as well as an extensive technical background, assist him in protecting clients’ inventions across a wide range of technologies. His work securing and defending inventors’ patent rights provides insight on patent method claims and the issues that arise when enforcing them in infringement litigation.

The event is free to TIPLA members and $15 for nonmembers. Lunch will be provided. To register for the event, visit

“This case significantly changes the law on divided patent infringement for process/method claims,” said Green. “Patent professionals need to be aware of this new law, both for the expanded enforcement opportunities for existing patents, and to craft patent claims in new applications to avoid this mode of infringement.”

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