Rick Nelson


1 (612) 337-7229


Professional Experience

Rick is a shareholder with Kinney & Lange whose practice focuses on intellectual property law, primarily in the areas of patent prosecution, patent clearance studies, and patent portfolio management. Rick has over ten years of experience as a software engineer and systems engineer in the aerospace industry. Prior to law school, Rick worked as a senior software engineer and later as a principal systems engineer at Goodrich Sensors and Integrated Systems in Burnsville, Minnesota. While at Goodrich, he led multi-discipline teams of engineers to design advanced algorithms used in the generation of flight-critical air data.

Rick drafts and prosecutes US and PCT patent applications, supervises international patent application filings through direct national filings, PCT applications, national stage patent applications, and Paris Convention applications. In addition, he regularly conducts patentability and freedom-to-operate studies, including opinions of counsel with respect to product infringement, non-infringement, enforceability, and validity.

Rick graduated summa cum laude from William Mitchell College of Law, where he earned a Juris Doctor in 2012.Prior to law school, he received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mathematics from the University of Minnesota. While at the University of Minnesota, Rick worked as a teaching specialist for a pilot calculus program helping to teach courses in multi-variable calculus and differential equations to science and engineering majors.


  • Patent Freedom to Operate Searches, Opinions, Techniques, and Studies, (ABA, 2017), co-author
  • Intellectual Property Law for Business Lawyers, Kinney & Lange, P.A. (annual)

Selected Presentations

  • Midwest Intellectual Property Institute – “7 Strategies for Drafting Patents in Light of the AIA and IPR Trends” (2015)
  • Intellectual Property: Advanced Topics for Businesses in a Changing Legal Landscape – “American Broadcasting Companies v. Aereo” (2014)

Representative Matters

  • Prepared and prosecuted patent applications, including PCT and foreign counterparts, in a variety of technology areas.
  • Participated in patent clearance studies for billion-dollar product lines on behalf of multinational corporations.
  • Prepared patentability reports for clients.
  • Advised clients regarding patent portfolio and filing strategies.