We are a boutique business and intellectual property law firm for creative entrepreneurs, innovators and change agents. Maybe you’re a blogger, visual artist, maker or branding genius. No matter the industry, we work with big thinkers who are bored by the status quo.

So far, you’ve been trying to figure it all out on your own. As your strategic legal partner, we protect your business and brand so you can focus on changing the game. Our signature 360 Legal Approach integrates business and legal strategy in everything we do so you can leverage your creativity for cash, impact and legacy.

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Our Approach


We snub mediocracy and empower clients to abandon the starving artist mentality.

  • PP3.1

    “Spend less time worrying about whether your business is legally protected and more time creating.”

    You’ve thought long and hard about starting a new business. Or maybe you want to take your existing business to the next level. Your business is not just some “thing” on your to do list but it’s the way that you’ll impact your industry and leave a legacy that makes you proud.

    You realize that successfully launching a business is no easy feat, and you want to make sure you take the right steps along the way. You understand that it’s easier to get things right the first time around rather than fix problems down the road. You want a trusted advisor to make this happen so that you can spend less time worrying about whether you’ve got it right or wrong, and more time creating and making money doing the work you love.

    I’m Patrice, the principal attorney and founder of Creative Genius Law. I work with creative entrepreneurs, innovators and change agents to solve today’s legal matters like protecting brands, drafting partnership agreements and hiring your first employees. But, I also collaborate with you to move your business from side gig to full-time, leverage your creativity for cash, and build a thriving business with long term success. Success for you could mean lifelong creativepreneurship or building a financially viable business that can be sold. I want to help you build a business that leaves you with the freedom to choose your adventure.

    I started working with Patrice in the beginning of 2013 to start a non-profit organization. She has a creative mind and helped me to see beyond the cut-and-dry law. We now have 501(c)3 status and can begin to offer new services to advance arts education for our community, students, and educators. As an artist, I also worked with Patrice to trademark my brand. She provided me with plenty of advice to protect my own creative language. Coming from an artist’s background I didn’t understand anything related to the law. Working with Patrice was great because I was able to communicate with her, in and out of meetings to get all of my questions answered. Her answers were always organized and clear. I am looking forward to work with Patrice more while I grow and develop my 501(c)3 organization as well as my own art.
    Injung Oh, Oh Art Foundation

    In the past, you’ve been frustrated with the legal support you've hired. You’ve felt at the whim of whoever was working with you because you weren’t included in the process as much as you would have liked. Education is a cornerstone of my work. I educate you on the legal issues in your business, collaborate with you, and put you in the driver’s seat so you are never at my whim but you have clear control of your business - even when I’m not around. While small businesses often work with lawyers on an ad hoc basis, I serve as your legal partner and a core member of your team. This means that your business will be protected from every angle and you will no longer have to make major decisions alone. You’ll stress less, confidently seek new business opportunities, and have more time to create and do the work you love.

    Talking it through with a lawyer and creative advocate like Patrice gave us confidence in our decisions. She pushed us to think about both our short-term and long-term needs and the legal implications of our business. The biggest results that we experienced were talking with a legal professional that understands what is important to creative businesses and receiving small business support beyond “legal services”. Not all lawyers are the same; Patrice is patient and genuinely vested in supporting your creative vision AND your legal needs. You are in good hands.  
    Paul Branton + Michelle E.M. Merritt, Aplomb Urban Art Salon

    Are you serious about your journey and interested in working with us? Request a Getting to Know You Call.


  • My mission is to develop a generation of empowered creative entrepreneurs who abandon the starving artist mentality, leverage their creativity for cash, and build thriving, innovative businesses so they can impact lives and have the freedom to choose their own adventures in life:

      • I develop legal strategies to support your big picture goals. I use the law to protect your business AND leverage your creativity (Go figure, the law doesn't have to actually stifle your creativity at all).
      • I make sure you are never out of the loop. No, you didn't choose to go to law school (and that's fine) but as a business owner I want you to be empowered with an understanding of the basic legal issues at play in your business, so you can confidently make savvy decisions.
      • I am not just your lawyer, but your legal partner. We collaborate regularly on your grand ideas and everyday business decisions to minimize risks and maximize opportunities (because you have this secret power called Intellectual Property that I'll pay extra special attention too).

    My entire career, I’ve worked in roles allowing me to protect the underdog, lead start-up initiatives, change lives, and disrupt industries (everything that I love and bring to the table in Creative Genius Law):

      • As a pro bono coordinator for a legal aid organization, I started and designed our Continuing Legal Education Program, and started and developed our Special Education legal project. Our Special Ed program was recognized by Illinois Supreme Court Justice Anne M. Burke.
      • As part of a small start up team for a Federal Court appointed compliance office, I developed compliance and monitoring protocols to ensure merit-based employment practices in local government offices. It’s the only program of it’s kind in the United States.
      • As founder of StreetFood Artistry, a non-profit organization, I provided pro bono legal services to one deserving creative entrepreneur each year. We hosted the first food truck fest in Chicago.
      • As the national social media director for a legal tech start-up, I steered social media and digital marketing strategies. Our online network makes small law [firms] competitive with BigLaw by crowdsourcing resources and collaboration. It’s a game changer.

  • And, here are the lawyer(ly) creds:

    • Juris Doctor, DePaul University College of Law. B.S. Business Economics, Florida A&M University.
    • Business and Publications Editor, DePaul Health Law Journal
    • Contributing Researcher, In the Shadows of the War on Terror, Persistent Police Brutality and Abuse of People of Color in the United States: A Report Prepared for the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, presented in Geneva, Switzerland.
    • 2014 American Bar Association "Legal Rebel"

    Bar Admissions

    • Illinois

    Professional Affiliations

    • American Bar Association
      • United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Office Action Task Force
      • Copyright & Social Media Committee
      • Trademark Litigation Committee
      • Trademarks & The Internet Committee
    • Illinois State Bar Association
    • Metropolitan Board of the Chicago Urban League
    • Future Leaders Council, YWCA
    • Chicago Artists Coalition

    Speaking Engagements and Workshops

    • Creative Expo: Protect Your Brand In Cyberspace (2012)
    • Collabo Music Industry Mixer: The Business of Licensing and Publishing (2012)
    • Zhou B Art Center: The Top 10 Pitfalls of Creative Entrepreneurs (2013)
    • Chicago Artists Coalition: Negotiating Contracts, Intellectual Property + A Little Social Media In Between (2013)
    • Blogging While Brown Conference: Got a Blog? Protect Your Brand in Cyberspace (2013)
    • Chicago Urban League: Legal Issues of Small Business Ownership (2013-2015)
    • Hyde Park Art Center: Pop Up Legal Clinic (2014)
    • South Side Community Art Center: Pop Up Legal Clinic (2014)
    • DePaul University College of Law, Technology and Intellectual Property Clinic (2014)
    • American Bar Association (2014)
    • Chicago Artists Coalition (2014)
    • ColorComm Chicago (2014)
    • AVVO Lawyernomics (2015)
    • Eat Write Retreat (2015)
    • Altitude Design Summit (2015)
    • Chicago Artists Coalition (2015)
    • Blogher Experts Among Us (2015)
    • Accomplishment Coaching (2015)

Client Love

Media & Affiliations

media aba
media carol roth
media chicago artists coalition
media chicago urban league
design sponge
media fortune
media nbc chicago
media wbez
media ysf
qomen 2.0

Practice Areas

Business Set-up + Transactions

Business Set-up + Transactions


Business Set-up + Transactions

  • Help you select the proper business entity and handle the set up for you (including LLCs, S Corps, C Corps and 501c3).
  • Counsel on how to maintain your business in compliance with state law.
  • Draft joint venture agreements to safeguard your assets when entering new business partnerships.
  • Draft non-disclosure and no-compete agreements to protect your business’ intellectual property including trade secrets, copyrights and trademarks.
  • Counsel on employee and personnel matters.
  • Draft employment contracts, policies and handbooks for your team.
  • Draft independent contractor and consulting agreements so that your outsourced work is protected.
  • Draft independent contractor and consulting agreements to protect your freelance business.
  • Counsel you through the process of purchasing or selling a business.
  • Review and negotiate commercial lease agreements on your behalf.
  • Draft, review and negotiate other contracts.
Social Media + Cyberspace

Social Media + Cyberspace

Counsel on how to use social media to effectively market your brand while minimizing risks of infringement.


Social Media + Cyberspace

  • Implement cease and desist strategies for people who infringe on your brand online.
  • Handle domain name disputes on your behalf.
  • Counsel on legally publishing a blog and managing user content.
  • Draft privacy and terms of use policies for your website that are tailored for your line of business.
Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property

Copyrights and Trademarks



  • Help you and your team create a viable brand that can be protected with a trademark.
  • Identify potential conflicts and competing trademarks with a trademark search.
  • Register your trademark and counsel you on maintaining it.
  • Monitor your registered trademark to detect instances of infringement.
  • Represent your company before the United States Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, including filing and defending Oppositions.


  • Counsel you on copyright matters such as fair use and infringement.
  • Draft work for hire agreements to maintain copyright ownership when working with outside vendors.
  • Secure copyright clearances and licenses for your use in creative projects.
  • Register your copyright.
  • Draft licensing agreements and negotiate them on your behalf.
Advertising + Marketing

Advertising + Marketing

Counsel on the legalities of running contests, giveaways and promotions, and draft the guidelines to protect your business.


Advertising + Marketing

  • Draft sponsorship agreements that best protect your company’s interests.
  • Review and counsel on advertising and marketing campaigns for copyright and regulatory issues.
  • Draft talent, joint marketing and other agreements that may be necessary to support your advertising and marketing effort.

Need an immediate plan to protect your business and brand?

Are you ready to get clear on how to protect your business so you can confidently move on the opportunities that will take you to the next level?

“Working with Patrice has been a pleasure. As small business owners, we felt overwhelmed and lost when it came to anything regarding legal representation for our new business. There were certain issues we knew we needed legal guidance dealing with, but taking on a lawyer felt daunting and we weren’t sure of the initial steps to take.

Our initial session gave clarity to a lot of the questions we had. The issues felt less overwhelming and we had the sense that we were on our way to getting our legal issues addressed. We had some answers, a plan and a timeline, all of which was a relief.

We would recommend Patrice in a minute to someone in need of her legal services. She guided us through some easy pitfalls for small business owners while being totally friendly and professional.” – Sarah, The Fat Shallot

I’m Ready To Dig In