Delrahim, Makan

Makan Delrahim is a member of our Litigation team and Antitrust practice group. His practice focuses on antitrust, intellectual property, competition policy and international trade. He is a frequent commentator and author on competition law and intellectual property issues.  

He represents or has represented clients before the U.S. Supreme Court, the federal courts, international tribunals and enforcement agencies, and before congressional investigative and oversight committees. Representative past and current clients include: Microsoft, Oracle, Qualcomm, the Ultimate Fighting Championship, Caesars Entertainment, the World Poker Tour, Masimo Corporations, as well as individuals in white collar matters.

Makan is a former Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Department of Justice Antitrust Division, for Appellate, International and Policy. He also served as a member of the U.S. Attorney General’s Task Force on Intellectual Property. His principal responsibilities included serving as the Antitrust Division's point person on international antitrust issues. In addition, Makan oversaw the Antitrust Division’s appellate litigation and policy development. During his tenure at the Department of Justice, he played key roles in the Department’s enforcement and policy development on emerging matters at the intersection of antitrust and intellectual property. In addition, he served as Chairman of the Merger Working Group of the International Competition Network (ICN), an organization of antitrust authorities whose goal is to advance global coordination and cooperation of competition law enforcement activities.

In 2003 and again in 2005, Makan was appointed by the Senate Majority Leader as a commissioner on the U.S. Antitrust Modernization Commission. The Commission was created by Congress to perform a comprehensive evaluation of antitrust laws, report to Congress and the President on its findings, and make policy and legislative recommendations.

Prior to his service at the U.S. Department of Justice, Makan served as staff director and chief counsel of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. His accomplishments include historic legislation in the areas of bankruptcy, class action litigation and patent law reform, various copyright legislation as well as the USA Patriot Act. He was also the principal staff architect of landmark antitrust reform, which updated the Hart-Scott-Rodino merger control act for the first time in nearly a quarter century. Makan commenced his service on the Senate Judiciary Committee as one of the Counsel's investigation antitrust abuses in the computer software industry. 

Makan has also served at the Office of the United States Trade Representative, working on intellectual property matters, and at the National Institutes of Health’s Office of Technology Transfers. Previously, Makan practiced antitrust law and litigation as an associate at the Washington, DC office of Patton Boggs.

Representative Matters
  • Faced with intense Congressional scrutiny, Brownstein worked with our client to develop congressional messaging, engage in meetings in the United States Senate, and prepare for a high profile congressional hearing, ultimately mitigating Congressional concerns.

  • Brownstein team for a major corporate client during a very intense period of crisis management when the company was under scrutiny from the Congress, including Hill outreach and extensive hearing preparation. This resulted in two successful hearings on Capitol Hill.

  • Represent a major sports league on a copyright piracy matter.

  • Represented Warner Music Group in connection with the Universal/EMI merger.

  • Served as the independent examiner charged with reviewing a component of an agreement between the State Attorneys General and a prominent Internet social networking company.

  • Filed an amicus brief on behalf of Intellectual Ventures Management and individual inventors in the U.S. Supreme Court in the Microsoft Corporation v. i4i Limited Partnership patent case. At issue was the appropriate standard of proof in a patent validity challenge. In the brief, amici argued that the statutory presumption of patent validity and long-standing precedent support the application of the existing "clear and convincing" standard. Further, given the importance of innovation and investment to the U.S. economy, a change in the standard would disturb the careful balance Congress has created and diminish the value of patents. Brownstein attorneys worked with co-counsel at Susman Godfrey on the preparation of the brief. On June 9, 2011, the Supreme Court upheld the application of the "clear and convincing" standard in an 8-0 decision.

  • Helped obtain funding for an innovative bioremediation project to remove a chemical pollutant from drinking water.

  • Advised one of the world's largest high-tech companies in navigating an unfriendly environment on Capitol Hill concerning its multi-billion dollar acquisition of another company.

News & Events

Board of Directors, Chrysalis

U.S. Trademark Public Advisory Committee

Publications & Presentations
  • J.D., 1995, with high honors, The George Washington University Law School
  • M.S., 2002, Johns Hopkins University
  • B.S., 1991, University of California, Los Angeles
  • California
  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of California
  • U.S. Supreme Court

"Local Litigation Star," District of Columbia, Benchmark Litigation, 2013

Patent and Trademark Office, U.S. Department of Commerce

Adjunct-Law Professor, International Trade Law, at Pepperdine University School of Law


American Bar Association, Chair of Legislative Committee

American Bar Association, Antitrust Section