William Honaker

William H. Honaker


With over 25 years of experience, Bill has extensive knowledge and expertise in all aspects of patent, trademark, trade secret and copyright matters including litigation in a broad range of technologies/industries. For his clients, he evaluates patents, trademarks and copyrights along with advising clients on the protection of inventions, trademarks and copyrightable subject matter. Bill is a highly sought after IP attorney in part due to his proprietary client communication and project management system, The Harmony System™.

Bill’s representation includes Fortune 500 clients, small to mid-size privately held companies and startups. He approaches each client matter from the perspective of the business – whether it is IP rights, IP infringement or Litigation. Bill listens and asks questions to fully understand the true invention and what is critical to his client’s business. Unlike many patent attorneys, Bill understands that just having a patent is not important, that protecting the invention and providing value to the client is the true goal.

Bill has the unique ability to help clients avoid unnecessary litigation. He has represented numerous clients in resolving Intellectual Property litigation in the early stages and many times before the lawsuit is even filed. Through extensive research of technologies throughout the world, he can typically find proof that the [competitor’s] patent is not valid or substantially limited in scope. He helps clients understand the costs of litigation, both financial and personal, and the many options other than litigation that are available. In the event litigation is unavoidable, Bill utilizes a team approach putting the right person at the right cost doing the right job. With over 70 IP specialists at various rates, he can provide superior value at extremely reasonable rates.

Bill has developed the Harmony System™ to address the typical frustrations that clients have with their IP counsel. The Harmony System™ is a five step process that covers critical ongoing information to keep clients informed and ensure there are no surprises. Bill provides regular presentations and training seminars for his clients and their employees on Intellectual Property issues of importance to their business. He also investigates his clients businesses to better understand their business and provide relevant information to them.

Visit IPGuy.com for more information on Bill’s speaking engagements, published works, and updates on IP law.

Education & Credentials


University of Toledo

B.S.M.E., 1979
  • Pi Tau Sigma

University of Toledo College of Law,Georgetown University

J.D., 1984

Bar Admission

  • Michigan1984


  • Listed in Chambers USA 
  • Listed in Top Lawyers
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America
  • Finalist, Outstanding IP Litigator in Michigan by Managing Intellectual Property Magazine
  • Named an "IP Star" by Managing Intellectual Property

Prominent Assignments

Affinity Tool Works v Sunzi (2014)

Represented Affinity Tools Works against infringement of several design patents. Shortly after filing the lawsuit and discussing our position, the infringer agreed to pay money damages to Affinity and stop selling the accused products.

Qualitas Manufacturing Inc. v. Pentagon Manufacturing Corporation (2014)

Represented the defendant Pentagon in infringement lawsuit relating to a utility patent. The lawsuit was dropped almost immediately in view of evidence located in an international search.

Osmundson v. Wearparts (2013) 

Represented the defendant in a lawsuit involving a utility patent. The case was settled for a nominal dollar amount before an answer was filed.

Extensive experience in all aspects of patent, trademark, trade secret and copyright matters including litigation in a broad range of technologies, including:

  • Surgical and medical apparatus
  • Food processing and related equipment
  • Welding equipment and processes
  • Metal cutting tools
  • Marine products
  • Hydrostatic drives
  • Fastener assemblies and manufacturing processes
  • Tool holding assemblies
  • Gas spring assemblies
  • Farm and garden equipment
  • ABS brake systems
  • Seat assemblies
  • Die assemblies
  • Mold assemblies and controls
  • Computer hardware and software
  • Heating and air conditioning
  • Filter systems
  • Wood working equipment
  • Cement cutting equipment  

Professional Involvement

  • State Bar of Michigan
  • Intellectual Property Law Section (Former Chairman)
  • American Bar Association
  • American Intellectual Property Law Association
  • International Trademark Association
  • Licensing Executive Society

Representative Clients

Kellogg Company – A Fortune 500 food company, represented for over 25 years.

Delphi Automotive – A Fortune 500 automotive supplier, represented for over 15 years.

Federal Mogul Corporation – A Fortune 500 automotive supplier, represented for over 15 years.

Stryker Instruments – A Fortune 500 medical products supplier, represented for over 12 years.

Beijing West Industries – A major Chinese automotive supplier, represented for over 5 years.

Trynex – A leading producer of ice control and turf equipment, represented for over 20 years, since their inception.

Great Lakes Air – A leading manufacturer of Air Filtering Equipment, represented for over 10 years.

Affinity Tool Works – A leading manufacturer of wood working equipment, represented for over 10 years.

Yantai Shougang Magnetic Materials, Inc. a major Chinese manufacturer of industrial magnets, represented for over 1 year.


  • Author, “Sued Over Social Media Photos: What Musicians Can Learn From Katy Perry’s Court Case,” Music Connection, April 2020 
  • Author, “If You Produce Creativity Content, then Learn from Taylor Swift,” Music Connection, March 2020
  • Author, “Five Royal Trademark Lessons From the Duke and Duchess of Sussex,” IP Watchdog, February 2020 
  • "The US Postal Service guilty of copyright infringement . . . again!," 
  • “Your New Product Launch…Crushed by Patent Infringement: How to Avoid a Nightmare,” Food Manufacturing, June 2014
  • “Intellectual Property Deskbook for the Business Lawyer”, A Transactions Based Guide to Intellectual Property Law Third Edition” ABA Business Law Section, contributing author, 2014
  • Intellectual Property Presentation Southern China University of Technology “The American Invents Act”, 2012
  • Presentation on “Changes to US Patent Law” presented to Kellogg Company 2012
  • Presentation on “Changes to US Patent Law, The American Invents Act”, Shanghai Associates Group 2012.
  • “Intellectual Property Deskbook for the Business Lawyer, A Transactions Based Guide to Intellectual Property Law Second Edition” ABA Business Law Section, contributing author, 2009
  • “The Supreme Court’s decision in KSR v. Teleflex, New Concerns for Patents” Business Law Today, March/April 2008
  • “Ownership Issues Involving Employees and Consultants,” The Licensing Journal
  • “Information and Innovations of Employees and Consultants – Ownership and Licensing Issues,” Licensing and Other I.P. Transactions, American Conference Institute
  • “Ownership of Intellectual Property Rights,” Laches, Oakland County Bar Association Magazine
  • “Employment at the Patent and Trademark Office: Can You Leave With What You Learned?” JPOS
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