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Tom Dunlap works with clients to manage, protect and enforce their intellectual property rights in private business and government contracts. For over twenty years, his unique background has allowed him to apply legal and practical knowledge to benefit clients in business, intellectual property, and government contracts transactions and disputes. Tom routinely represents clients in transactional matters and before various state and Federal courts, arbitration (AAA, UNCITRAL, and JAMS), and tribunals, which include the GAO, ASCBA, and others (see Experience below).

His non-law background experience includes founding... and selling a software gaming company, co-inventing (U.S. patents US8382987 B2 and US20140045274 A1), founding and venture funding a biotech company (Ceres Nanosciences), running a vineyard, serving on boards and commissions, and nine years in the U.S. military where he served as a Cavalry officer. In addition to prior experience in commercial banking, as a special prosecutor, serving as an Airport Commissioner (KJYO), and serving as president of the Loudoun County Bar Association, serving as special counsel appointed by the governor of Virginia, Tom currently manages the government contracts his law firm holds with the National Institutes of Health and Department of Homeland Security. Tom is both a Washington, D.C., and Virginia SuperLawyer (2016-2023, top 2.5%) and has a “Superb” AVVO rating (10.0).

His recent jury victories include a $31 million patent infringement verdict (Federal Court) and a $2.6 million copyright and contract counter-claim verdict. Tom has been counsel in multiple Federal Circuit and United States Supreme Court cases. Tom’s recent publications include the Lexis’ Practice Guide to Trademark Portfolio Management (2023), the 2019 Chambers Guide to U.S. Trademarks (2019), and  Essentials of Intellectual Property Law (2022, Virginia CLE). Tom holds a J.D., MBA, and M.S. in biotechnology. In addition to teaching the bi-annual Virginia CLE on intellectual property to lawyers, Tom has guest-taught classes at Washington & Lee University School of Law and George Washington University.

Tom has also worked with the film industry in copyright, licensing, distribution, contract, compliance, fundraising, and clearance, including as an annual legal speaker at AMC Network’s Sundance Film Festival (2016 -2020) on SundanceTV and was selected as a Power 100 Lawyer in entertainment by the Hollywood Reporter for his work with film studios, including Voltage Productions (The Hurt Locker), Millennium Film (Expendables 2), and others. Tom has appeared in national television commercials and is an associate producer and scriptwriter for the film Assault on Wall Street (Uwe Boll, 2012).


  • Led jury trial team obtaining $31 million in total award for willful patent infringement.
  • Led jury trial team in defense of unjust enrichment, fraud, conversion, and breach of contract claims, where, despite the client starting as a defendant in the case, obtaining a $2.6 million counter-claim verdict.
  • Negotiated successful corrective actions taken by the government following bid protests filed with the GAO, including NASA, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the Department of Defense.
  • Successful defense of a multi-hundred-million-dollar contract award from the Defense Health Agency (DHA), which was protested more than five times, including highly technical OCI disputes.
  • Successful defense of award of GSA’s One Acquisition Solution for Integrated Services (OASIS) indefinite‑delivery, indefinite‑quantity (IDIQ).
  • Negotiated successful settlement of claims for dispute with Army Corps of Engineers in contested ASBCA matter involving overseas real property lease.
  • Won six patent appellate matters in the United States Federal Circuit.
  • Served as court-appointed receiver to manage and run the business of a vineyard and event venue for 16 months, pending resolution of disputes over ownership and control.
  • Served as lead counsel for the amicus brief to the United States Supreme Court in the TC Heartland decision.
  • Obtained multi-million-dollar preliminary injunctions in a patent infringement case involving national consumer products disputes and Amazon sales.
  • Managed multi-million-dollar landmark multi-jurisdictional Federal copyright infringement litigation for films including The Hurt Locker, The Expendables 2, and The Gray Man.
  • Led successful patent infringement defense of robotic fish, invalidating patent of opposing party on summary judgment.
  • Led successful patent infringement case on behalf of a technology manufacturer for hostage rescue phone technology.
  • Negotiated the sale of an EMR system from the University of North Carolina to a private buyer, including registration of copyrights and protection for related intellectual property.
  • Negotiated multiple sales of scripts, life rights, and film distribution agreements for independent film companies.
  • Successful appellate defense of appeal to Virginia Supreme Court regarding fraudulent conveyance of commercial real property.


  • NOVA Top 10 Lawyers, Northern Virginia Magazine
  • Top 100 Power Lawyers in Entertainment, Hollywood Reporter (2010)
  • Virginia SuperLawyer, 2008 – 2009, (Rising Star), 2011-2023 (SuperLawyer)
  • Washington, D.C. SuperLawyer 2013 – 2023
  • Martindale-Hubbell Peer Rated
  • Who’s Who in American Law
  • Virginia Legal & Business Elite 2012, 2013, 2016
  • AVVO 10.0
  • Leaders in the Law 2018


  • B.A. English/ Theater, Lafayette College
  • J.D. Law, Washington & Lee University School of Law
  • M.B.A. University of Maryland
  • M.S. Biotechnology, University of Maryland
  • Summer Program, Boston University, Semester at Sea, Woods Hole, MA
  • Summer Program, Tulane University School of Law with Antonin Scalia, Crete, Greece


  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland
  • Virginia
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • District of Columbia State Courts
  • International Trade Commission
  • Maryland State Courts
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Puerto Rico
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
  • U.S. Tax Court
  • Virginia State Courts

Memberships & Associations

  • American Bar Association, Co-Chair Copyright Litigation Committee, Commercial Litigation, (2009-2012)
  • Antitrust & Intellectual Property Sections Attorney’s Arbitration Services, Arbitrator/ Mediator, Panel Member (2004 – 2012)
  • Standard & Poor’s Vista Research – Society for Industry Leaders, Expert Panel Member (2001 – present)
  • American Legion, Post 34 – Leesburg, Member (2002 – present)
  • Veteran’s of Foreign Wars, Post 1777 – Leesburg, VA
  • Virginia State Bar Association, Litigation, Business Law & Intellectual Property Law Section Member
  • Maryland State Bar Association, Intellectual Property Law Section, Membership Committee (2006 – Present)
  • Loudoun County Bar Association, Past President (2004), Board Member (2003, 2005)
  • American MENSA (1998 – present) and Capitol M, Member (2001-present)
  • Airplane Owners and Pilots Association (Panel Attorney)
  • Rotary International (2004 – present)
  • Shenandoah University – NOVA Advisory Board (2002-2004)
  • LoudounCares Board Member (2005-2010)
  • Loudoun Community Free Clinic, Board Member (2003 – 2014)
  • Leesburg Executive Airport, Commissioner (2007 – present)
  • Free Mason, Olive Branch Lodge and 32nd Degree Scottish Rite, Alexandria
  • Washington, D.C. Bar, Intellectual Property Section

Outside of Work

Outside of work, Tom enjoys flying planes (as a licensed instrument pilot), diving (PADI Master SCUBA diver), and enjoys hanging with his family, friends, and dogs (and tolerates the family cat), and occasionally competing in marathons (most recently Paris 2023) and triathlons with friends. Tom was a Division I varsity fencer (saber) in college and played rugby from high school at the International School of Geneva, Switzerland, through law school, and is a former silver medalist in Burmese kickboxing. Additionally, Tom is an adjunct professor at Lafayette College where he teaches the Intellectual Property for Scientists & Engineers (ME340) course at the School of Engineering.

Intern Program

As part of our effort to recruit, develop and retail the best and brightest attorneys, Dunlap Bennett & Ludwig offers a summer intern program for promising law school students who are looking to work as part of an innovative and incredibly successful team. With a global team of lawyers, selected candidates are able to work on high level projects in a collaborative space.

Paralegals and Legal Support Staff

At Dunlap Bennett & Ludwig, our team of paralegals and staff work together collaboratively along side our attorneys toward a common goal. We have created a positive work environment where our paralegals and legal assistants work to successfully reach firm-wide goals and support each other to combine individual strengths to enhance team performance. They regularly assist our attorneys with organizing and maintaining files, conducting legal research, and preparing documents.