Dale Cendali is a nationally recognized leader in the field of intellectual property litigation, having successfully litigated and tried numerous high-profile cases, and having argued before the U.S. Supreme Court. Her practice encompasses copyright, trademark, false advertising, patent, Internet, and trade secrets law, as well as defamation, the right of publicity, privacy, complex contract disputes and similar areas, including electronic discovery. Dale heads Kirkland’s Copyright, Trademark, Internet and Advertising Practice Group.

Recently, Dale was inducted into the 2023 IAM IP Hall of Fame. In 2020, Dale was recognized as one of "Hollywood's Top 100 Attorneys" by The Hollywood Reporter. In 2019, Dale was selected for the Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America “Hall of Fame.” In 2018, Dale was recognized as a “Litigator of the Week” by The American Lawyer. In 2017, Dale was named “Outstanding Litigator: New York” at Managing IP’s North America Awards. Dale has been named one of Benchmark Litigation's Top 250 Women in Litigation in the 2012–2023 editions. In The World's Leading Trademark Professionals 2017 and 2021 report by World Trademark Review, Dale was recognized in "enforcement and litigation." In 2016, Law360 named Dale one of the 25 “Icons of IP,” who have “made an indelible mark in the IP area.” Dale was named in The 2016 BTI Client Service All-Stars report by BTI Consulting Group. In 2013, The National Law Journal selected Dale as one of the “100 Most Influential Lawyers in America.” The National Law Journal had previously named her one of “America’s Top 50 Women Litigators,” one of the “50 Most Influential Women Lawyers in America,” and one of “The Most Influential Lawyers” for media and entertainment. Dale has repeatedly been ranked as a “top tier” lawyer by Chambers Global and Chambers USA, which describes her as “one of the best lawyers in the country” in her field who combines “intellectual acuity” with a “tough, hard-working attitude”; a “superb litigator” who “thinks quickly on her feet and vigorously defends her clients.” Euromoney Legal Media Group also named Dale as “Best in Copyright [in] the Americas” at its inaugural Americas Women in Business Law Awards in 2012 and in 2013, and in 2014 was awarded “Best in Trademark [in] the Americas.” Dale also was included in Euromoney’s Benchmark guide, “The Top 250 Women in Litigation.” Dale was also selected as one of the “20 Most Influential Women in IP Law” by Law360. Managing Intellectual Property selected Dale as one of the six “Outstanding IP Practitioners” in the United States, and named her trial victory for J.K. Rowling on the high-profile “Lexicon” fair use case as the “Copyright Trial of the Year.” IP Stars has named Dale one of the “Top 10 Women in IP.” Dale was listed as one of Lawdragon’s 500 Leading Lawyers in America in the 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 guides. The Legal 500 U.S. recognized Dale as a “Hall of Fame” attorney in the areas of copyright and trademark litigation in its 2023 edition. They also recognized Dale as a “leading lawyer” in the areas of trade secrets and media and entertainment litigation, and they recognized her for non-contentious trademark work. The World Trademark Review recognized Dale as a “Trademark Experts’ Expert.” IP Law & Business recognized her as one of the “Magnificent Seven - IP’s Best Young Trial Lawyers.” Dale was selected for The Best Lawyers in America in the area of Intellectual Property Law. She also has repeatedly been named by Super Lawyers among “The Top 100 New York Lawyers” and “The Top 50 Female New York Lawyers,” and was profiled in the feature story “Truth, Justice and the Cendali Way” in the 2007 New York Metro edition of Super Lawyers Magazine. World Trademark Review named Dale a "revered branding expert" who "remains keenly engaged in the development of the law. Dale has been recognized by the Harvard Law Bulletin as one of Harvard Law School’s “Nifty 50,” celebrating 50 of Harvard Law School’s alumnae. Dale was also selected as a litigation star in the 2013 edition of Benchmark Appellate. Kirkland was named by Managing Intellectual Property in 2014 as “Trademark Contentious Firm of the Year-Nationwide.”

Dale is also an adjunct professor at Harvard Law School, teaching copyright and trademark litigation. She is also a prolific writer and has long been active in the bar. In 2010, INTA elected Dale to serve as Counsel, the highest-ranking position in the organization for an outside counsel. She also previously chaired INTA’s Dilution and Enforcement Committees, and is the current chair of INTA’s inaugural Copyright Committee.

Dale was also the Vice Chair of the Copyright Division and chair of the IP Special Issues Division for the IP Section of the ABA, and currently serves on Council for the ABA IP Section. Among many other positions in the bar, Dale is also the former Chair of the Trademarks and Unfair Competition Committee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York. In 2015 Dale was selected as an Adviser for The American Law Institute’s project, Restatement of the Law, Copyright.


Thought Leadership


“The Death of the Litmus Test,” Chicago-Kent Journal of Intellectual Property, December 20, 2023 (Co-Author)

“Litigating Scènes à Faire,” The Columbia Journal of Law & The Arts, May 5, 2020

ABA Copyright Litigation Strategies Handbook (co-editor, author of chapter “The Fair Use Defense: Strategic Considerations”)

“Copyright Litigation” chapter in Successful Partnering Between Inside and Outside Counsel (Robert L. Haig, ed., 1st ed., Fall 2000 and 2016 Supp. by West Group and ACA) (First Author)

“Current Controversies in Trademark Infringement Remedies: Profits and Damages, Injunctive Relief and Attorney Fees Under the Lanham Act,” ABA Spring Meeting 2014, April 4, 2014 (Co-Author)

“Hey, Those Bits Are Mine: Evolving Theories of Liability in 'Web Scraping,'” PLI’s Social Media 2104, February 26, 2014 (Co-Author)

“Gray Markets: Importation Rights v. the First Sale Doctrine,” PLI’s Enforcement & Litigation 2013, February 1, 2013 (Co-Author)

“New Trends in U.S. Trademark Litigation Involving Chinese Companies,” New York Law Journal, February 27, 2012 (Co-Author)

“Why Trademark and Copyright Counsel Should Heed the Patent Precedent of the Supreme Court,” Landslide, November/December 2009

“Copyrights and Wrongs,” The Economist on-line debate on proposed revisions to copyright law, May 2009 (Opinion Author)

“Eight Steps to a Powerful Opening,” 26 Communications Lawyer 11 Nov. 2008 (First Author)

Moseley v. V Secret Catalogue, Inc.: One Answer, Many Questions, 93 The Trademark Law Reporter 833, 2003 (First Author)

“How to Ensure Your Website Complies with Consumer Protection Laws,” Internet Law & Business, October 2002

“Trademark Protection and the Internet,” UCLA Symposium and INTA Annual Meeting, 2001

“Electronic Discovery,” PLI's Fourth Annual Internet Law Institute, June 2000

“An Overview of Intellectual Property Issues Relating to the Internet,” 89 Trademark Reporter 485, 1999 (First Author)

“The Internet and Jurisdiction: The International Experience," The Computer Law Association Bulletin, Vol. 14, No. 2 1999 (Co-Author)

“Personal Jurisdiction in Cyberspace,” The New York Law Journal, July 20, 1998 (First Author)

“How to Protect Your Intellectual Property on the Internet?” Price Waterhouse Leadership Conference, 1998

“Freelancers Reeling In Fight Over Online Rights: Tasini v. The New York Times,” The National Law Journal, October 20, 1997

“Personal Jurisdiction and the Internet,” PLI's Annual Internet Law Institute, 1997 and 1998

“Net Use Raises Issues of Jurisdiction,” The National Law Journal October 28, 1996 (First-Author)

“You Name It: To What Extent Can A Surname Be Used As A Trademark?” Los Angeles Daily Journal and the San Francisco Daily Journal April 25, 1996 (Co-Author)

“In Lotus, The 1st Circuit Departed From Precedent, Narrowing Protection For Developed Software And Giving Crafty Litigators A Blank Disk On Which To Write,” The National Law Journal May 15, 1995 (First-Author)

“The Book Publishing Industry: Intellectual Property, Privacy, Libel and Contract Issues,” The Texas Bar Association, March 1995

“Other Methods of Proof,” The New York Bar Association's Practical Evidence Program, December 1994

“Computer Interfaces Test Copyright Law's Scope,” The National Law Journal, October 31, 1994 (First-Author)

“Lotus Case Highlights Copyright Issues and High-Tech Problems,” The National Law Journal, November 1, 1993 (Co-Author)

“Book Publishing,” University of Houston Law Foundation and University of California at Davis School of Law, July 1993 and July 1994

“Federal Preemption of State Dilution Statutes,” The New York Law Journal, April 12, 1993 (Co-Author)

“Sega Case Suggests Protection Strategies," The National Law Journal, January 18, 1993 (Co-Author)

“Ferrari Case Shows Collision of Competing [Trade Dress and Patent] Protection Concepts,” The National Law Journal, October 12, 1992

“Fact-Compilation Ruling May Hinder [Copyright] Protection,” The National Law Journal, June 17, 1991

“The Work for Hire Doctrine After CCNV v. Reid,” New York State Bar Journal, July 1990 (Principal Co-Author)

“Enjoining A Tender Offer for Misuse of Confidential Information: Is It A Show-Stopper or Can The Bidder Cure?” The Journal of Proprietary Rights [December 1989 (Part I); January 1990 (Part II)] (First Author), abstract reprinted in The Bowne Digest for Corporate & Securities Lawyers (April 1990)

“Representing The Employee In A Trade Secret Case,” The Corporate Analyst, August 1989 (First Author), Reprinted in The Corporate Counsel's Guide to Protecting Trade Secrets

“In Search Of Truth, A Review of Renata Adler's Reckless Disregard,” 15 Northern Kentucky Law Review 227, 1987

“Entering and Leaving the Employer-Employee Relationship, Planning For Possible Litigation, Strategic Aspects of Litigation,” Trade Secret Law Reporter, Vol. II, Nos. 10-11 (1987)

“Of Things To Come–The Actual Impact of Herbert v. Lando and a Proposed National Correction Statute,” 22 Harvard Journal on Legislation 441 (1985), Partially reprinted in M. Franklin, Cases and Materials on Mass Media Law 293-295 (3d Ed. 1987)

Press Mentions

“Litigator of the Week Runners-Up and Shout Outs,” The American Lawyer Litigation Daily, December 15, 2023

“An Exceedingly Impressive Group of Litigator of the (Past) Week Runners-Up and Shout Outs,” The American Lawyer Litigation Daily, August 16, 2023

“Law360's Legal Lions Of The Week,” Law360, August 7, 2023

“The Changing Landscape of Copyright Law in the Art World With Intellectual Property Authority Dale Cendali,” Art Sense, July 11, 2023

“Litigation Department of the Year: Intellectual Property,” New York Law Journal, October 1, 2021

“Encore! Encore! Here are the 2020 Litigators of the Week,” The AM Law Litigation Daily, December 23, 2020

“2020 Practice Group of the Year: Intellectual Property,” Law360, December 3, 2020

“2020 MVP: Dale Cendali,” Law360, October 8, 2020

“The Firms That Won Big at the Supreme Court,” Law360, July 10, 2020

“Litigators of the Week: Kirkland Trio Dances Off With a Win in Video Game Copyright Suits,” The AM Law Litigation Daily, June 5, 2020

“Kirkland's 'Bionic Women' Don't Mind Taking on the Boys,” New York Law Journal, April 22, 2019


“Intellectual Property, Comics, and the Law,” San Diego Comic Con; July 20, 2018

“The DMCA at 20: Current Developments and the Future of Section 512 of the Copyright Act,” USC IP Institute; March 20, 2018

NYSBA Media Law Committee Lunch; March 6, 2018

“The American Theatre Wing: 100 Years, 100 Voices, 100 Million Miracles,” BroadwayCon 2018; January 26, 2018

“Annual Trademark and Copyright Updates,” Law Education Institute; January 3, 2018

“Comics in the Courts,” San Diego Comic Con; July 21, 2017

PLI Panel; July 17, 2017

ABA Business Law Section Meeting; April 7, 2017

“Copyright at a Gallop,” ABA-IPL Spring Meeting; April 5, 2017

“The Legal World of Harry Potter,” Harvard Law School; December 5, 2016

PLI Technotainment; October, 19, 2016

“Intellectual Property, Comics & The Law,” New York Comic Con: CBLDF; October 8, 2016

“Inclusive Trade,” WTO Public Forum; September 27, 2016

“Comics in the Courts,” San Diego Comic Con:CBLDF; July 22, 2016

“New Cases in Copyright Law: Internet and Beyond,” PLI; June 23, 2016

“The Future Ain't What It Used To Be,” KCMBA Media Law Conference; April 29, 2016

“Television and the Wave of the Future,” ABA-IPL Spring Meeting; April 8, 2016

Protecting Superheroes: Copyright & Comic Book Characters,” Copyright Society of the USA; October 14, 2015

“New Cases in Copyright Law: Internet and Beyond,” PLI; June 25, 2015

“What’s Fair is Foul: How Has the Transformative Use Doctrine Transformed Copyright Law for Better or Worse?” Media Law Resource Center; May 15, 2015

“How to Create Alternative Fee Arrangements that Provide Value,” INTA Annual Meeting; May 5, 2015

“The Odd Couple: Right of Publicity and Social Media,” ABA Spring Meeting; March 25, 2015

“Smashing the Glass Ceiling,” Managing Intellectual Property International Women’s Leadership Forum; June 6, 2014

“Hot Topics & Recent Developments in Trademark Law,” City Bar Trademark Talk; May 20, 2014

“Hollow Remedies: Insufficient Relief under the Lanham Act,” ABA’s 29th Annual Intellectual Property Law Conference; April 2-4, 2014

“Copyright Enforcement Update: Fair Use and Grey Market Goods," Practicing Law Institute; February 2, 2013

“Copyright Law and Practice in Canada Now: Analysis and Implications of the new Legislation and Latest Supreme Court Rulings,” Insight Information; December 3-4, 2012

Gave legal opinion regarding the Mario Puzo/Paramount dispute on CNBC's Closing Bell; August 30, 2012

Interviewed by Joel Rose on NPR's All Things Considered about the Shepard Fairy case; May 10, 2012

CLE Presentation, “Recent Developments in Copyright Law,” Time Warner; April 19, 2012

“US Enforcement of Important Copyright Assets,” Practicing Law Institute; March 28, 2012

“Hot Topics in Intellectual Property: Protection of Fictional Characters,” New York City Bar, Committee on Trademarks and Unfair Competition, Committee on Copyright and Literary Property; March 19, 2012

“Disruptive Technology: Digital Media & Its Effects on the Publishing World,” International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU) Tech Series; March 8, 2012

“Battlefield Fair Use: Lessons learned from the Harry Potter Lexicon and the Shepard Fairey case and the current Appropriation Art Debate,” ALAI Canada Toronto Luncheon at Heenan Blaikie; January 13, 2012

“The Effect of Supreme Court Patent Jurisprudence on Copyright Law," ABA Section of Intellectual Property Law, Annual Intellectual Property Law Conference; April 2009

“That's All Well and Good, But How Do We Prove It? Evidence and Hot Substantive Issues,” 2009 Mid-Winter Institute, AIPLA; January 2009

“Copyright Considerations for User Generated Content,” American Intellectual Property Law Association, Annual Meeting; October 23, 2008

“Making Rain: Taking the Lead in Bringing in Business,” Celebration 55: The Women's Leadership Summit, Harvard Law School; September 2008

“First Chair: Trying Intellectual Property Cases,” American Bar Association, Annual Meeting: Commission on Women in the Profession -- Day of Equality; August 7, 2008

Memberships & Affiliations

International Trademark Association (Current Chair of the Copyright Committee; Former Counsel; Former Chair of Trademark Enforcement Committee; Former Chair of the Dilution Committee; Former Member of the Presidential Select Task Force on Dilution)

American Bar Association

  • IP Section of the American Bar Association (Current member of Council; Vice Chair of Division III - Copyrights; Former Chair of Division IV - IP Special Issues; Former Chair of the Copyright Litigation Committee)
  • Litigation Section of the American Bar Association (Former Chair of the IP Committee; Former Division Chair)

Association of the Bar of the City of New York (Trademarks and Unfair Competition Committee (Former Chair); Communications and Media Law Committee; Copyright and Literary Property Committee)

New York State Bar Association (Media Law Committee; IP Committee; Cyberlaw Committee)


Admissions & Qualifications

  • 1985New York


  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of New York
  • United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of California
  • United States District Court for the District of Colorado (inactive)
  • Supreme Court of the State of New York, Appellate Division, First Judicial Department
  • Supreme Court of the State of New York, Appellate Division, Second Judicial Department


  • Harvard Law SchoolJ.D.1984
    Editor-in-Chief, The Harvard Journal on Legislation, 1983–1984
  • Yale UniversityB.A.summa cum laude1981
    Phi Beta Kappa