Optics and Photonics

Based in the epicenter (New York State) of the optics, photonics and imaging industry, we help clients develop business, finance, and intellectual property strategies to maximize investments and protect technology.

New York State is a growing high technology center that advances progressive ideas and pioneers initiatives to speed the most leading edge technology products to market. At the intersection of high technology and intellectual property, staying in the lead is critical.

Deft navigation of a swiftly evolving market is vital to secure new ideas and avoid stagnating disputes. Several members of our practice have extensive in-house experience with industry leaders, so they are well positioned to provide counsel that integrates excellent industry insight and business judgment. We thoroughly understand your technology and business issues, ensure you stay ahead of evolving law, and avidly defend your intellectual property rights.

Recognizing that many companies in this industry are start-ups, we guide clients through corporate formation and governance, Seed and Angel investments, and venture capital financings. We have substantial experience representing venture capital investors and portfolio companies in private equity transactions from seed stage and first round investments to later stage and follow-on investments. From the enterprise side, we offer a broad range of services in support of all aspects of establishing and growing the company, including business plan review, business structuring, and debt and equity financing. We routinely advise entrepreneurs and emerging businesses on the mechanisms available to them to fund their business ventures.

Working with clients applying the science of using and controlling photons has been a natural progression. We’ve stood behind innovative clients and their technology since our earliest days, and we’ve traveled together into the now. Our goal is to partner with you to consistently innovate and implement creative ways to safeguard and capitalize on those innovations.


Intellectual Property Protection:

  • Patent and trademark procurement including preparing, filing and prosecuting patent and trademark applications
  • Freedom to operate assessment, clearance studies and opinions, infringement and validity studies and opinions
  • Contested intellectual property matters including conducting Inter Partes Review, Ex Parte examinations, post-grant proceedings and litigation


  • New York City Biotechnology Tax Credit– For taxable years beginning in 2010, 2011 and 2012, a refundable credit is available against qualified research expenses for biotechnology firms.
  • Patent portfolio audits.
  • Qualified Emerging Technology Companies (QETCs), with particular focus on small emerging technologies and the investments they make in qualified research costs.
  • Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit – Investments in R&D facilities are eligible for a 9% corporate tax credit. Additional credits are available to encourage the creation and expansion of emerging technology businesses, including a three-year job creation credit of $1,000 per employee and a capital credit for investments in emerging technologies.

Our Clients

We have long represented corporate and academic leaders in the optics and photonics industry.

  • Consumer product and services companies
  • Corporations (ranging from Fortune 500 to closely-held companies)
  • Technology companies
  • Design professionals
  • Energy providers
  • Entrepreneurs and start-up companies
  • Health care providers
  • Universities and academic medical centers
  • Life science companies
  • Manufacturers
  • Telecommunications providers

Optics and Photonics Applications:

  • Aeronautics
  • Bridge and highway structural analysis
  • Communications
  • Computing
  • Consumer products
  • Defense and national security
  • Electronics
  • Energy
  • Fiber optics
  • Financial services
  • Health and medicine
  • Imaging
  • Industrial
  • Manufacturing
  • Material Sciences
  • Metrology
  • Multiplexing
  • Nanotechnology
  • Optics and optical systems
  • Telecommunications

Key Contact


This website presents only general information not intended as legal advice. Although we encourage calls, letters and emails from prospective clients, please keep in mind that merely contacting Harter Secrest & Emery LLP (HSE) does not establish an attorney-client relationship between us. Confidential information should not be sent to HSE until you have been notified in writing by HSE that a formal attorney-client relationship has been established. Information sent to us before then may not be treated as confidential by HSE or the court.

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