Pity the lawyers—except for those who practice intellectual property law. In IP, these are boom times. Fights between major players such as Apple and Samsung Electronics drag on for years, get stuck on complex technical details, and can dwell on the patents in products no longer on the market, with legal fees mounting all the way.
Consider the legal fees commanded in Apple and Samsung’s latest dispute. A 2012 case between the two tech giants was decided in Apple’s favor, as was a portion of that case that was recently retried to determine the damages Samsung must pay Apple for infringing several iPhone and iPad patents. The total now owed to the Cupertino (Calif.) computer and tech giant stands at $929 million, not including legal fees.