Mark van Gardingen

“Mark van Gardingen is a next generation litigator – intelligent and tenacious who receives high praise for his oral advocacy and strategic foresight.” – IAM Patent 1000

Mark (born 1973, bar-admitted 1997) is one of the founding partners of Brinkhof. He specializes in complex pan-European patent litigation & strategic advice. His pre-university sciences education combined with a master’s degree in patent & IP law (Utrecht University) enables him to quickly grasp any sort of technology (electronics, (bio-)chemistry, mechanical engineering, etc.), and turn that into legal opportunities. Mark’s style is personal and energetic/passionate, pragmatic and always focused on the “end game”. Importantly, Mark is also fun to work with.


Mark is actively involved in shaping Europe’s patent law future, particularly in view of the upcoming changes with the introduction of ‘Unitary Patents’ and the ‘Unified Patent Court’ (UPC). Mark is Board Member of EPLAW (with an approved observation status of the Administrative Committee of the UPC), Board Member of the International Standing UPC Committee of AIPPI, Member of the IP Advisory Committee of the Dutch Bar Association, and Member of the “Committee of Eight” advising the Dutch government on patent law developments. Mark is also active as a ‘mock trial lawyer’ in the EPO’s training program for (candidate) UPC judges.

Examples of multi-jurisdictional patent cases Mark has been involved in are:
– Advising and representing Heineken in a global patent dispute against ABI (incl. parallel US ITC litigation);
– Representing The Dow Chemical Company in litigation about misappropriation of trade secrets (incl. parallel US ITC litigation);
– Acting for various pharmaceutical companies (Synthon, Accord, Sandoz) in patent cases about ‘small’ and complex/‘big’ molecules;
– Representing Boston Scientific in patent cases about all sorts of medical devices, including stents and heart valves;
– Acting for international eye technology companies (CibaVision, Alcon) in patent cases about contact lenses and laser surgery technology;
– Representing Johnson&Johnson in patent litigation against Abbvie about anti-psoriasis antibodies;
– Acting for Carl Zeiss SMT alongside ASML in a global patent dispute against Nikon about immersion lithography technology;
– Representing Novozymes in a cross-boarder patent dispute about enzyme technology against DSM;
– Acting for various international telecom companies (i.a. OPPO) in patent disputes about Standard Essential Patents (SEPs) and FRAND issues.

Various international practitioners guides (Legal500, Chambers, JUVE, IAM1000, Who’sWho) regard Mark as a leading/Tier 1 European patent law specialist, and have recommended him for being among the “Most Highly Regarded Individuals in Europa for patent litigation”, and for his “practical understanding of legal procedures and his litigation skills –‘he visualises the big picture and has a willingness to liaise with all parties’”. One guide even wrote (making him blush): “One of the best patent lawyers in the Netherlands by some distance, Van Gardingen is absolutely incredible to watch in court – a persistent, persuasive character who comes up with thorough and captivating arguments.