• vcard
312.873.3688
  • Education
    • J.D., Stanford Law School, 1995, Managing Editor, Stanford Journal of Law, Business and Finance; Editor, Stanford Journal of International Law
    • B.A., University of Colorado, 1984, Distinguished Graduate, Dean's List; Phi Beta Kappa
  • Bar Jurisdictions
    • Illinois, 1995
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, Trial Bar, 2012
  • Court Admissions
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 1995
    • State of Illinois, 1995
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, 2000
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, 2006
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin, 2008
    • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, 2008
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas, 2008
    • U.S. District Court, District of Oregon, 2009
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, 2012
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri, 2014
    • State of Missouri, 2014
    • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida, 2017
Tom Gemmell is an experienced intellectual property and business litigator. As a former fighter pilot and son of a supplier to the Big Three auto manufacturers, Tom has hands-on experience in the aerospace and automotive industries and, in the courtroom, brings a mission-oriented focus to the advantage of industry clients. Tom has jury and bench tried cases in federal and state courts nationwide and represents clients in, among others, the aerospace, automotive, health care and manufacturing industries. Among Tom’s victories on behalf of clients are:
  • Jury verdict for leading health care provider in $780 million patent infringement lawsuit 
  • Summary judgment for distributor of building products on $380 million false advertising claim
  • Arbitration award for tracking technologies company on multi-million dollar claim for breach of patent licensing agreement 
  • Arbitration award for global energy producer on theft of trade secrets claim 
  • Dismissal for web-based photo-services provider in multi-patent infringement lawsuit brought in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas
Tom is also Lead of the firm’s Transportation and Logistics practice and Co-Lead of the firm’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems and Advanced Robotics practice and Aviation practice. In aviation and aerospace/defense, Tom represents commercial airlines, corporate flight departments and defense contractors in litigation and intellectual property matters.  Among his representative matters include:
  • Represented airline in defective-design and breach of contract lawsuit against designer and developer of automated baggage system
  • Represented airline in breach of contract lawsuit against developer of in-flight entertainment system for 777 aircraft
  • Represented carriage, release and ejection systems developer relating to bid for supply contract to U.S. Navy
  • Represented worldwide consumer products company in business jet crash investigation
  • Represented developer of remotely-operated weapons system in patent infringement lawsuit
Relating to Unmanned Aircraft Systems, commonly referred to as “drones,” Tom is proficient in FAA regulations, UAS technologies, and operations in the national airspace. He represents clients across a wide range of industries, including energy, agriculture, real estate, communications, mapping, mining, railroad, higher education, and movie and television, and is among the first to obtain FAA authorization for the commercial use of drones. Tom’s experience includes:
  • Part 107 / FAA 333 Exemption 
  • Program setup and integration
  • Privacy and data security 
  • Service agreements 
  • Insurance 
  • Jury verdict for leading healthcare provider on claim of inequitable conduct before U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in $780 million patent infringement lawsuit brought by competitor in U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, relating to hemodialysis machines. 
  • Summary judgment for leading distributor of building products on $380 million claim for false advertising damages in lawsuit brought by competitor in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin. 
  • Arbitration award for leading tracking technologies company on multi-million dollar claim of breach of patent license agreement. 
  • Arbitration award for global energy producer on theft of trade secret count in lawsuit brought in U.S. District Court, Northern District of Oklahoma relating to seismic sequence attribute map (SSAM) technology. 
  • Dismissal of patent infringement claims brought against leading online photography services provider in lawsuit brought in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas by Non-Practicing Entity relating to photo-sharing technology.
  • Full amount damages for building products manufacturer in settlement of patent infringement counterclaim against competitor in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin. 
  • Award in favor of tier-one automotive supplier in arbitration of ownership/inventorship of patents relating to airbag cover technology. 
  • Favorable settlement for leading provider of Microsoft Office integration software and service in patent infringement case brought in U.S. District Court, District of Oregon, related to computer toolbar customization technology. 
  • Favorable settlement for imaging products manufacturer in theft of trade secrets and unfair competition lawsuit brought by competitor in Illinois Circuit Court relating to CAT and MRI scanners. 
  • Represented power-tool manufacturer at jury trial in multi-million dollar design patent and trade dress infringement lawsuit brought in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Virginia, by competitor relating to miter saws and trade dress in the colors black and yellow. 
  • Represented Fortune 100 multinational automotive OEM at jury trial in product liability lawsuit brought in New York Supreme Court relating to alleged vehicle “sudden acceleration.” 
  • Represented tier-one automotive supplier of thermoplastic products in multi-patent infringement lawsuit brought by competitor in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, relating to airbag cover technologies. 
  • Represented defense contractors in mass tort class action lawsuit brought in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington by plaintiff class relating to release of iodine-131 from Cold War plutonium production facilities. 
  • Represented U.S. airline in multi-million dollar defective-design and breach of contract lawsuit brought in Denver District Court against designer of Denver International Airport’s automated baggage system. 
  • Represented North America’s largest intercity bus transportation provider in $200 million defective design and breach of contract lawsuit brought in Illinois Circuit Court. 
  • Represented leading manufacturer of plush animal toys in numerous trademark infringement lawsuits, resulting in court orders and settlements to enforce infringers’ withdrawal of infringing products from market. 
  • Represented web-based photography-services provider and specialty retailer of fashion footwear in qui tam actions brought in Illinois Circuit Court on behalf of the State of Illinois relating to Internet sales and use-tax, and shipping tax.
text icon Publications & Presentations
Polsinelli on Drones & Advanced Robotics Blog
October 25, 2017
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Presenter; Global Chambers
September 12, 2017
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Polsinelli on Drones & Advanced Robotics Blog
August 15, 2017
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Polsinelli on Drones & Advanced Robotics Blog
July 31, 2017
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Featured in Government Product News
May 24, 2017
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Polsinelli on Drones & Advanced Robotics Blog
March 16, 2017
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Polsinelli on Drones & Advanced Robotics Blog
February 23, 2017
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Polsinelli on Drones & Advanced Robotics Blog
January 30, 2017
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Polsinelli on Drones & Advanced Robotics Blog
January 27, 2017
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On The UAS Horizon: Legal Considerations Every UAS Interested-Party Needs To Know
Arizona UAS Summit & Expo; Scottsdale, AZ
November 7-9, 2016