Bill has handled domestic and international trademark and copyright matters at the highest level for over 60 years.  He has counseled and represented clients on domestic and international trademark matters concerning clearance, registration, proper use, licensing, contested administrative proceedings and infringement claims.  He became Senior Counsel in January 2024 and is now focusing on providing guidance and advice to other lawyers within our firm and writing informative and engaging articles on intellectual property law developments.

For 50 years Bill authored the annual editions of A Trademark is Not a Copyright or a Patent.  Deborah K. Squiers has taken over this project.

I enjoy tennis, sailing, travel and reading thrillers.”

Honors & Recognitions

"William Borchard is well versed in all aspects of trademark law, in which he provides 'strategic and practical advice with complete understanding of the client’s business'." 2022 Who’s Who Legal: IP 

“Counsel William Borchard is a ‘superior trademark expert and wise counsellor’ who is ‘incredibly collaborative and responsive’.” 2022 WTR 1000 – The World’s Leading Trademark Professionals

“William Borchard is a luminary of the US and international trademark scene and a generous sharer of knowledge whose contributions to the firm’s ‘On My Mind’ blog are always worth reading.” 2021 WTR 1000 – The World’s Leading Trademark Professionals

“Highly rated for prosecution and brand strategy at an international level, William Borchard has been thinking around trademark corners for nearly five decades.” 2020 WTR 1000 - The World's Leading Trademark Professionals

"Eric Shimanoff and William Borchard 'are creative, responsive, diplomatic, methodical and effective – they meet and exceed the highest standards'." 2018 WTR 1000 - The World's Leading Trademark Professionals

  • The Legal 500 "Leading Lawyers" (2015 to present); "Hall of Fame" (2017 to present)
  • Named in WTR 1000 - World Leading Trademark Professionals for Prosecution and Strategy (2014 to present); Luminaries (2020); Global Leaders--the world’s most prominent trademark practitioners (2020)

  • New York "Super Lawyers" Intellectual Property Law (2006 to present)
  • The Best Lawyers in America for Copyright and Trademark Law (2003 to present)
  • International Who's Who of Trademark Lawyers (Law Business Research Ltd. 2001 to present)
  • Guide to the World's Leading Trade Mark Law Practitioners (Euromoney Legal Media Group 2000 to present)
  • Who's Who in America  - Law (Marquis Who's Who 1989 to present)
  • Who’s Who Legal, IP – Trademarks (Law Business Research Ltd.) (2002 to present, including Thought Leader – USA – IP – Trademarks, 2023)

Community & Professional Activities

  • American Law Institute, Continuing Legal Education, Intellectual Property Advisory Panel (2014 to 2018)
  • Columbia University School of Law  - Guest Lecturer, Trademark Licensing (1987-97)
  • The American Law Institute, Advisory Committee, Restatement (Third) of the Law of Unfair Competition (1986-92)
  • International Trademark Association-Legal Counsel (1988-91); The Trademark Reporter-Editor-in-Chief (1978-79), Advisory Board Member (1980-date), TMR Committee Member (2022-2023).

  • American Bar Association -Chairman of Copyright Division (1981-82) and Trademark Division (1984-85)



  • He has assisted clients in structuring the intellectual property aspects of complex mergers, acquisitions, divestitures and securitizations; split trademark ownership transactions; international transfer pricing structures; and intellectual property holding company transactions. He also deals with Internet and domain name issues.
  • Has advised and represented diverse clients such as The First Church of Christ, Scientist, Columbia University, the Empire State Realty Trust (owner of the world-famous Empire State Building and more than 20 other major properties in the greater New York area), fashion majors as The Donna Karan Company, J. Crew, Ann Taylor and London Fog, and various smaller companies
Prior Employment

Kaye, Scholer, Fierman, Hays & Handler (1964 - 1983)



Speaking Engagements

  • Washington Marriott Marquis, 901 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20001, November 7-10, 2017
  • Fashion 2.0 Social Media, Virtual Worlds. . . and the Real World, too' moderator at CLL Fashion Program (2010)
  • 'Finding Capital for the Apparel and Fashion Industry in Today's Environment' J.H. Cohn's Program (2009)
  • 'Someone's Stealing My Food' moderator at CLL's Food & Hospitality Seminar (2008)
  • 'Protecting Fashion Designs' presentation at CLL's Fashion '07 Seminar Trademarks & the Arts (Second Edition, Columbia Law School, 1999)

Social Media

Blog Posts


Columbia Law School (JD 1964; Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar; Columbia Law Review)

Princeton University (BA 1960)


  • New York
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Third, Federal Circuit
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York
  • United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
  • United States Supreme Court
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