About Nikki

Best-practices-driven branding counsel

Nikki Murray advises clients on intellectual property (IP), branding, marketing and advertising issues. She combines deep knowledge of client businesses with knowledge of the laws and regulations, counseling on:

  • Branding, marketing and advertising best practices, assuring that marketing and advertising campaigns are in compliance with applicable laws.
  • Trademark and copyright infringement, including enforcement campaigns and strategic advice to help clients protect, maintain and expand their brands.
  • Portfolio management and licensing to maximize return on IP investments.
  • Risk management, including advising on the use of media and minimizing legal risks in the areas of mobile marketing, social influencers, native advertising, and sweepstakes and contests.

Nikki collaborates closely with clients, bringing strategic knowledge of the legal and regulatory landscape to the specific circumstances facing clients and their brands.

Experience in Action

  • Counseling clients on how to structure sweepstakes, contests and promotions.
  • Advising clients on compliance issues associated with gift cards, rebates, coupons, loyalty programs, and text- and email-based marketing.
  • Reviewing traditional and social media advertising campaigns for legal compliance.
  • Negotiating stadium sponsorship and naming rights.
  • Trademark prosecution and counseling, including selecting, clearing and registering trademarks, and representing businesses in federal court litigation and trademark oppositions and cancellations.
  • Advising clients on brand partnership agreements, including co-branding agreements, product placement agreements, and influencer agreements and best practices.
  • Negotiating publishing agreements for both commercial and nonprofit.

Successes

  • Negotiated trademark license and celebrity spokesperson agreements for a major U.S. home furnishings manufacturer.
  • Negotiated advertising agency and promotion fulfillment agreements for a major U.S. home furnishings manufacturer, a consumer products company and a major full-service dining company.
  • Defended an internet company in a trademark infringement suit regarding the company’s key advertising tagline in the Central District of Illinois.
  • Defended an outdoor retailer in a patent infringement and trade dress suit in the Southern District of California related to cold weather headwear.
  • Represented a drug manufacturer in a trademark infringement suit in the District of New Jersey and the Third Circuit, obtaining a preliminary injunction enjoining use of the competitor’s similar trademark.

Professional Recognitions

  • Illinois Super Lawyers®- Super Lawyers Edition, Intellectual Property, 2018–present
  • Illinois Emerging Lawyer - Law Bulletin Media, Copyright & Trademark, Intellectual Property, 2017–present
  • Illinois Super Lawyers®– Rising Stars Edition, Intellectual Property, 2010–2011, 2013–2017
  • In 2016, Nikki was named in World Trademark Review 1000, a guide to the world's leading trademark practitioners. The publication notes that “She is extraordinarily knowledgeable on the subject of trademark law, enormously talented and personable for client - a sterling professional.”
  • The Best Lawyers in America®, Trademark Law, 2015–present

Professional & Civic Activities

  • International Trademark Association (member)
  • Lawyers for the Creative Arts (volunteer)
  • Lifeline Theatre (board member)
  • Brand Activation Association (Chicago Chapter committee member)

News & Insights

Education

Bar Admissions

Court Admissions

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