Brian Wm. Higgins


As an engineer-turned-lawyer, Brian combines a deep understanding of client’s technologies and the law to help them advance their goals and enhance business valuation. Whether it is working with the latest software products in artificial intelligence, pharmaceutical and medical devices, or touchscreens used in automobiles, Brian works with clients to strategically protect, enforce, and defend their intellectual property rights. Brian has stand-up/first chair patent litigation experience in matters before federal and district and appellate courts.

Artificial Intelligence (“AI”) Technologies

In the field of AI, Brian has worked with healthcare, university, and other clients to identify and protect valuable innovations powered by AI technologies, such as those involving:

  • affective computing (emotional AI), using physiological data and deep learning classification techniques
  • machine learning classification schemes for predictive analytics
  • machine learning natural language processing, using n-gram, bag of words, and tagging for processing textual inputs and classifying content by topic

Brian regularly writes about AI legal issues as the editor of the Artificial Intelligence Technology and the Law blog (, including topics such as:

  • U.S. and international governance of AI technologies
  • valuation of AI businesses
  • protecting intellectual property rights related to AI developments
  • bias concerns and ethical issues arising from big data used to train machine learning models
  • privacy and individual rights implicated by AI systems and the collection of user data

Healthcare and Life Sciences Technologies

With a background that includes evaluating technologies useful in protecting human health, Brian helps healthcare academics and practitioners and life sciences companies protect their inventions, enforce intellectual property rights, and defend against patent infringement claims. Brian’s wide-ranging experience in these areas include:

  • artificial intelligence-powered software (e.g., Electronic Health Records (“EHR”) and other systems for collecting, assessing, diagnosing, reporting, alerting, and communicating health information)
  • digital assistants (chatbots) for controlling medical systems 
  • generic pharmaceuticals and biologics (including navigating Hatch-Waxman ANDA-type patent litigation)
  • medical/surgical devices in fields such as ophthalmology and cardiology
  • health-enhancing consumer electronic devices
  • nutraceuticals


  • For a private U.S. university, helped academic researchers secure patents and copyrights related to an award-winning artificial intelligence software invention for use in classifying health and geopolitical events.
  • For a public U.S. university, assisted medical and software researchers seek patent protection for an Electronic Health Record (“EHR”) invention using natural language processing and other statistical models for event detection and predictive diagnosis. 
  • For U.S. and non-U.S. generic drug manufacturers, obtained pharmaceutical composition and process patents, and successfully defended against patent and trademark infringement allegations brought by competitors.
  • For three Taiwan mobile telecommunications carriers, defended against a patent troll lawsuit.
  • For a national weather content service provider, helped developed an extensive patent portfolio in the mobile telecommunications location-based services (“LBS”) market.
  • For a prominent book author, identified and cleared copyright obstacles involving publication of photos of famous individuals in the author’s memoir.
  • For Internet e-commerce and content/service providers, helped protect their online businesses by securing patents and other intellectual property rights.
  • For an individual inventor, helped start up a new business from ground up, including procuring patent protection, incorporating a business structure, negotiating employment agreement terms, and developing strategies for enforcing and licensing patent rights.


  • 2017, listed in Capital Pro Bono Honor Roll



  • Maryland Bar Association
Professional Activities

Brian provides volunteer pro bono services to clients referred through the Baltimore-based Maryland Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts organization. 



  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit


  • Arizona State University, BS
  • Johns Hopkins University, MS
  • University of Maryland School of Law, JD