Melody Drummond Hansen


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Melody Drummond Hansen is an Intellectual Property and Technology Partner in O’Melveny’s Silicon Valley office. An experienced litigator, Melody has tried cases in federal and state courts, the US International Trade Commission, and the US Patent & Trademark Office. With over a decade of experience in technologies from cameras and streaming video to voice recognition and autonomous vehicles, she thrives at the frontiers of technology and law. Melody guides established market leaders and emerging companies alike through patent, data security, trade secret, privacy, copyright, trademark, contract, and unfair competition matters, and helps them overcome regulatory hurdles. Melody has litigated and advised clients in matters involving diverse technologies including avionics, mobile telecommunications standards, networked devices, internet content delivery architectures, semiconductors, secure payment processing, and consumer products, with experience in both hardware and software.

As Chair of the firm’s Automated & Connected Vehicles Industry Group, Melody is a thought leader in the developing law for autonomous vehicles, and she advises companies on litigation risk, data security and privacy, regulatory compliance, and state and federal agency investigations. Melody has been quoted and published on autonomous vehicles in publications including CNN, The Recorder, and Law360. She also is a member of the Editorial Board of The Journal of Robotics, Artificial Intelligence & Law.

Honors & Awards

  • Named to NLJ’s Technology Law Trailblazers List (2019)
  • Named to The Daily Journal’s Top Artificial Intelligence Lawyer (2019)
  • Recommended by Legal 500 for her work in Intellectual property - Trade secrets (2017)


Bar Admissions

  • California
  • District of Columbia
  • Illinois


  • University of Chicago, J.D.: cum laude; Order of the Coif
  • Oxford University, MSc, Comparative and International Education: with distinction
  • Georgetown University, A.B., American Studies: summa cum laude; John Carroll Scholar; Phi Beta Kappa

Professional Activities


  • Transportation Research Board’s Emerging Law Committee
  • Co-Chair, Bar Association of San Francisco Intellectual Property Executive Committee
  • American Bar Association Section of Intellectual Property Law
  • International Bar Association Intellectual Property Communications and Technology Section



  • Moderator, “Are you Being Reasonable? Implementing and Defending Reasonable Data Security Requirements,” O’Melveny and the Crypsis Group Webinar (August 13, 2020)
  • “California Privacy Law 2019,” Practicising Law Institute (September 26, 2019)
  • Panelist, “Automated Vehicles Ecosystem End-to-End Cybersecurity,” Automated Vehicles Symposium (July 17, 2019)

  • Representing smart and connected home solutions leader in patent litigation accusing home security and connected home devices and mobile applications (E.D. Tex.)
  • Advising data solutions company regarding developing standards and practices regarding data solutions for automated and connected vehicles
  • Advising autonomous vehicle technology company in responding to California DMV and U.S. National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration inquiries regarding product under development, open source research software, and advertising
  • Advising global leader in connected car technology, audio, cloud services, and IoT solutions regarding multiple intellectual property matters, including advice regarding licensing, supplier agreements, and audio and wireless standards
  • Advised autonomous truck technology company regarding testing permits in multiple states, accident response, and data preservation
  • Representing leading Internet search company in patent litigation asserting eleven patents related to user interface, streaming video and audio, and delivery and navigation of Internet content (N.D. Cal.)
  • Represented leading premium streaming service in licensing dispute and declaratory action for non-infringement of on-demand video programming over an internet connection (over-the-top) services
  • Represented premier global payments technology company in litigation related to a significant data security breach and enforcement of risk-management programs, including claims for breach of contract and under California unfair competition law (M.D. Tenn.)
  • Advised industry-leading aerospace company regarding multiple intellectual-property and antitrust related matters
  • Represented global communications, hosting, cloud and IT services company in patent infringement lawsuit involving nineteen patents asserted against digital subscriber line (DSL) technologies and high-speed internet, digital television and video-on-demand services, including claims related to mobile telecommunications standards compliance; after winning claim construction, plaintiff moved for non-infringement on its own patents, after which a favorable settlement was achieved (W.D. Tex.)


In the News

Bloomberg Law: Autonomous Vehicles and Software, Regulatory Challenges—A Conversation

July 13, 2020

Bloomberg Law: Self-Driving Car Rules Lag for Years as Technology Speeds Ahead

February 24, 2020

The Register: Maker of Linux Patch Batch grsecurity Can't Duck US$260,000 Legal Bills, says Cali Appeals Court in anti-SLAPP Case

February 7, 2020

Daily Journal: 2019 Top Artificial Intelligence Lawyers—Melody Drummond Hansen

June 26, 2019

The National Law Journal: 2019 Technology Law Trailblazers

June 10, 2019

American Lawyer: And the LOTW Runners Up…

May 31, 2019 Drive the Legal Road to Autonomous Cars

May 1, 2019 What’s Next: Driverless Cars’ Bumpy Road

January 9, 2019

American Lawyer: Spread of Autonomous Vehicle Technology Fosters Opportunities for Lawyers

December 6, 2018

Westwood One Radio Network: Automated Vehicle Safety

November 7, 2018

The American Lawyer: More Firms Embrace Online Tools to Cement Client Relationships

November 7, 2018

CBS Evening News: People Renew Their DACA Application

October 1, 2018

KGO-TV (ABC Affiliate, San Francisco): DACA Program Still in Legal Limbo, a Year After Trump Tried to End it

September 27, 2018

Alerts and Publications

Press Releases