Our Team

Kendall J. Burr

Partner

Phone: (713) 337-8875

Fax: (713) 337-8851

Email: kendall.burr@mhllp.com

Office Location: Houston


Kendall Burr zealously advocates for his clients and heads McDowell Hetherington LLP’s intellectual property practice. He represents his clients in patent, trademark, copyright, and trade secret litigation disputes, prosecutes patents and trademarks, and advises his clients on how to protect their intellectual property rights. Kendall also litigates many other types of commercial disputes in a variety of industries, including financial services, life insurance and annuity products, health insurance, real estate, energy, sports and entertainment, brand licensing, and other business disputes.

Kendall works closely with his clients to ensure that their cases are being pursued in the most efficient, effective, and economical manner possible. He knows how critical it is to constantly re-evaluate case strategies and re-assess risks and leverage, so that his clients always know their options and can capably direct efforts towards the most productive outcome. Kendall also loves writing, an essential skill for a litigator, and thoroughly enjoys both the intellectual and practical aspects of the practice of law.

Regularly litigating in numerous state and federal trial and appellate courts nationwide, Kendall also practices before the United States Patent and Trademark Office to service his clients’ patent prosecution needs. An alumnus of Columbia Law School, Kendall previously worked at large national firms in New York and Houston and in the National Hockey League’s legal department. Kendall also represented author J. K. Rowling in a highly publicized bench trial, winning a copyright infringement decision against the publisher of an unauthorized dictionary based on her Harry Potter books.

Fluent in both Spanish and Portuguese, Kendall served a two-year mission in Portugal, volunteered for two summers in Mozambique, and clerked for the U.S. Army JAG Corps. He is an Eagle Scout and is the Scoutmaster of a local troop. An avid runner, he has completed marathons, sprint triathlons, and climbed Mount Kilimanjaro. Along with his wife and three children, he organizes regular fundraising events for spina bifida and other causes.


HONORS

Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar

REPRESENTATIVE EXPERIENCE

  • Represented author J.K. Rowling and Warner Brothers in pursuing copyright infringement claims against the publisher of an unauthorized “lexicon” based on Ms. Rowling’s Harry Potter books, which resulted in a favorable verdict halting the publication of that lexicon after a well-publicized bench trial that Managing Intellectual Property named “Copyright Trial of the Year”.
  • Successfully tried to conclusion and obtained unanimous jury verdict of no liability for a nonprofit theatre company accused of trademark infringement, and won an appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
  • Represented brand licensor, License Management Co., in a case involving corporate opportunity and breach of fiduciary duty claims relating to the rights to license “Swiss Army” trademarks and secured a favorable settlement during the second week of a three-week bench trial.
  • Successfully prosecuted an intellectual property dispute on behalf of chemical compound producer INVISTA, a subsidiary of Koch Industries, Inc., in pursuing trade secret misappropriation and unfair competition claims relating to the theft of its proprietary chemical process technology it licenses to manufacturers of Butanediol in China. Favorable settlement included an agreement by the defendants to issue a joint press release stating that Defendants had agreed to pay INVISTA licensing fees in connection with two projects they had secured in China, and to the issuance of a court order declaring that defendants had no rights to INVISTA’s technology, and shall not use or license it in the future.
  • Obtained summary judgment dismissal of case brought against life insurer in a dispute involving non-recourse premium financing; the court found that the plaintiffs, an insured and a life insurance trust that had collaterally assigned policy rights to a third party premium financier, lacked standing to assert claims against the insurer due to the nature of the financing transaction. The Sixth Circuit affirmed this holding in insurer’s favor.
  • Represented a well-known international bank in actions seeking damages under the Antiterrorism Act for providing financial services to groups with alleged ties to international terrorism.
  • Representing The Phoenix Companies in connection with various stranger-owned/originated life insurance (STOLI) litigation matters in courts nationwide.
  • Represented American General Life Insurance Company and AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company in complex insurance disputes around the country.
  • Represented Gerber Life Insurance Company in a patent dispute involving business method patents relating to automated technological processes for generating direct marketing materials.
  • Achieved a favorable settlement shortly after two successful Markman hearings that significantly restricted the meaning of the plaintiffs’ alleged patent rights.

PUBLICATIONS & SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS

“Stranger-Initiated Annuity Transactions and the Case for Insurable Interest” Connecticut Insurance Law Journal, Vol. 19, No. 1 (2012).

“Making Sense of New York’s Corporate Opportunity Doctrine,”  New York State Bar Journal, Vol. 80, No. 10 (2008) (cover article, with Jonathan Rosenberg).

“The Evolution of the International Law of Alienability: The 1997 Land Law of Mozambique as a Case Study,” Columbia Journal of Transnational Law, Vol. 43, No. 3 (2005).

ADMISSIONS

  • New York
  • Texas
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas
  • United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Texas
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
  • United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth and Sixth Circuits

EDUCATION

  • Columbia Law School, J.D., Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar, 2005
  • Brigham Young University, B.A., Portuguese, cum laude, with honors, 2002