David Ervin


David Ervin is a partner in the firm's Washington, D.C. office, co-lead of the Advertising & Media practice, and a member of the Technology & Brand Protection Group. He focuses on the intersection of advertising and intellectual property law.

His practice focuses on the relationship between advertising and intellectual property law, primarily for consumer brands making significant investments in media and content creation and licensing. Specifically, David helps clients manage and protect their brands and intellectual property rights in connection with their advertising, media, sponsorship, licensing, sports marketing, e-commerce, loyalty program, and joint promotion activities. He routinely handles the negotiation and drafting of marketing, sponsorship, endorsement, and promotion agreements for advertisers and agencies with entertainment properties, broadcasters, publishers, athletes, models, celebrities, and professional sports leagues and teams (including the NFL, NASCAR, IndyCar, NBA, MLB, NHL, MLS, NCAA, and PBR). His clients include companies in the automotive, hospitality, wireless, retail, fashion, food & beverage, software, internet service providers (ISP), and financial services industries, as well as professional athletes, musicians, and sports leagues.

David assists clients with advertising production and media placement matters that involve music and content clearance, rights of publicity, SAG/AFTRA, claim substantiation, media barter, product placement, and new media issues. He also provides counsel on current industry topics, including social media, gift cards and payment devices, branded content, native advertising, IoT and geolocation, fair use, and blogging.

His litigation practice is focused on intellectual property, consumer protection and advertising matters, with recent cases involving copyright infringement, counterfeit and gray market goods, and unfair competition. Additionally, David regularly counsels and advises clients in trademark clearance and prosecution matters, structuring content, and IP licensing programs, including negotiating and drafting licensing agreements, establishing royalty structures, and ensuring compliance with e-commerce laws and regulations.  

Prior to private practice, David served as a law clerk for the Honorable Leonie M. Brinkema in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia and for the Office of the General Counsel at the General Accountability Office in Washington, D.C. He earned his B.A. from The American University, cum laude with University Honors, and his J.D. from The American University, Washington College of Law, cum laude. He is a member of the District of Columbia and Virginia bars, as well as many federal, district, and appellate courts.

David is recommended by US Legal 500 2012-2014 for his work in the Marketing & Advertising area, and clients report that he does "an excellent job of balancing the legal risk and the business exigencies" concerning new media campaigns. He is also listed as a leading lawyer in both The International Who's Who of Sports & Entertainment Lawyers 2013 and 2014 and The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers 2014.


Admitted to practice: District of Columbia, Virginia


Speeches & Presentations

  • "The Shared Economy: Disruption Continues," 2017 ANA/BAA Marketing Law Conference, Chicago, IL (November 13, 2017). Moderator: David Ervin.
  • "It's Mine, Not Yours: Protecting Media Rights," The Racing Attorney Conference, Indianapolis, IN (April 19, 2017). Panelist: David Ervin.
  • "Disruptive Innovations in the Shared Economy,” 2016 ANA/BAA Marketing Law Conference, Chicago, IL (November 9, 2016). Moderator: David Ervin.
  • "Helping Sales and Marketing Avoid an Anti-defamation, Infringement or Unfair Competition Claims from Competitors," ACC - In-House Counsel Conference, Anaheim, CA (January 27, 2016). Presenters: David Ervin, Steven D. Allison and Chahira Solh.
  • "Music Promotions, Concert Tour Sponsorships & Live Events: Securing Content Rights & Managing Risks," Brand Activation Association's 37th Marketing Law Conference, Chicago, IL (November 9, 2015). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "What's in a Name? Is An Ad by Any Other Name Still an Ad?: Distinguishing Between Native Advertisement and Editorial Content," ACI's 4th Annual Summit on Digital Advertising Compliance: Social Media, Sweepstakes & Promotions, New York, NY (October 20, 2015). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "New Rules of Digital Marketing - Avoiding the Legal & Regulatory Pitfalls," Women's Wear Daily and Crowell & Moring, New York, NY (September 16, 2015). Presenters: Cheryl A. Falvey, David Ervin, and Lauren Chesterman (Ralph Lauren Corporation).
  • "Gift Cards and Loyalty Programs: A Gift or Liability?" Crowell & Moring Webinar (April 29, 2015). Moderator: Walter Nagel; Panelist: David Ervin.
  • "Risk and Reward: What You Should Know About Regulatory and Litigation Risk Affecting Your Company’s Marketing Strategies in 2015," Association of Corporate Counsel, Southern California (January 21, 2015). Presenters: Steven D. Allison, David Ervin, and Van-Dzung Vu Nguyen.
  • "Key Issues in Advertising and Marketing in the Healthcare Industry," Crowell & Moring's Healthcare Ounce Of Prevention Seminar (HOOPS), Washington, D.C. (October 27-28, 2014). Presenters: Christopher A. Cole and David Ervin.
  • "Advertising Practices: Social Media, Endorsements & Overstock," 2014 Retail Law Conference, Charlotte, NC (October 15-17, 2014). Presenters: Cheryl A. Falvey, Christopher A. Cole, and David Ervin.
  • "SCANDALS, SCANDALS, SCANDALS: Morals Clauses in Celebrity Endorsement Agreements," American Bar Association – Forum on the Entertainment and Sports Industries, Marina del Rey, CA (October 9-11, 2014). Speaker: David Ervin.
  • "Launching Successful Native Advertisement Campaigns and Utilizing the Power of Bloggers and Other Influencers in Compliance with FTC Guidelines," American Conference Institute’s Third Annual Digital Advertising Compliance: Sweepstakes, Promotions & Social Media Summit, New York, New York (September 9, 2014). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Follow that Man!: Adopting Legal Strategies and Initiating Location-Based Technologies to Provide Meaningful Targeting Advertisements to Consumers Online and In Store," American Conference Institute’s Third Annual Digital Advertising Compliance: Sweepstakes, Promotions & Social Media Summit, New York, NY (September 9, 2014). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Motorsports Goes Hollywood’: SAG-AFTRA and Guild Issues," The Racing Attorney Conference 2014, Charlotte, North Carolina (April 9, 2014). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Going Native? Native Advertising and Product Placement," Media Law Resource Center, California Chapter (December 18, 2013). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Social Media and Digital Content in Motorsports," The Racing Attorney Conference 2013, Indianapolis, Indianapolis (April 10, 2013). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Pinterest & Intellectual Property: Reduce Risk & Protect Your Clients," National Constitution Center Webinar (November 1, 2012). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Legal Issues Regarding Social Media in Motorsports," The Racing Attorney Conference (TRAC), Charlotte, North Carolina (April 11, 2012). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Digital Strategies for Associations," Bisnow Panel, Washington, D.C. (October 20, 2010). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Sponsorship Mock Negotiation Panel," The Racing Attorney Conference 2010, Charlotte, North Carolina (April 21, 2010). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Closing the Deal: Interactive Negotiation Session, Sports Event Marketing Experience," Washington, D.C (March 27, 2009). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "It’s an Homage, It’s Political Commentary, It’s…It’s…NOT NECESSARILY FAIR USE-How to Recognize Where the Line MUST Be Drawn Before Content Goes Too Far," American Conference Institute’s User-Generated Content and Social Networking Conference (July 2008). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Live Sporting Events: Strategic Approaches for Maintaining Control Over the Brand," American Conference Institute’s 2nd Advanced Legal & Business Forum on Sports Marketing & Advertising Law (September 2007). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Complex IP Licensing," Law Seminars International Conference, McLean, Virginia (October 17-18, 2006). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "Protecting Intellectual Property Rights for Athletes, Leagues and Brands," ACI Sports Law Leadership Summit, New York, New York (September 27-28, 2006). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • "The Intersection of Advertising Law and Intellectual Property Law," Advanced Advertising Law: The Strategic Guide for Corporate Counsel Workshop, Marcus Evans, Chicago, Illinois (March 8, 2006). Presenter: David Ervin.
  • Corporate Counsel’s Guide to IP in Advertising & Marketing Conference, American Conference Institute, New York, New York (February 28, 2006). Presenter: David Ervin.


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August 18, 2022 The Best Lawyers in America 2023 Recognizes 54 Crowell & Moring Attorneys, Three Selected as Lawyer of the Year
June 15, 2022 Legal 500 United States Ranks Crowell & Moring in Eight Practice Areas in 2022 Guide
June 1, 2022 Chambers USA 2022 Ranks 70 Crowell & Moring Lawyers and 37 Practice Areas Among Best in U.S.
November 2, 2021 Crowell & Moring Secures Victory for Marriott International in High-Profile Jury Trial
September 16, 2021 Crowell & Moring and ACLU of Maryland Achieve Victory in Removal of the Last Confederate Statue on Public Grounds in Maryland
August 19, 2021 The Best Lawyers in America 2022 Recognizes 53 Crowell & Moring Attorneys, One Selected as Lawyer of the Year
June 14, 2021 Legal 500 United States Ranks Crowell & Moring in Six Practice Areas in 2021 Guide
May 20, 2021 Chambers USA 2021 Ranks 63 Crowell & Moring Lawyers and 30 Practice Areas Among Best in U.S.
May 5, 2021 Public Defenders, NAACP File Federal Court Challenge Demanding Immediate Removal of Racist Confederate Statue from Eastern Shore Courthouse
August 20, 2020 The Best Lawyers in America 2021 Recognizes 46 Crowell & Moring Attorneys, Two Selected as Lawyer of the Year
July 20, 2020 Legal 500 United States Ranks Crowell & Moring in Five Practice Areas in 2020 Guide
April 10, 2020 LITIGATION NOTE: Crowell & Moring Secures Win for Client Molson Coors’ Hard Seltzer Launch
August 16, 2019 The Best Lawyers in America 2020 Recognizes 49 Crowell & Moring Attorneys, Three Selected as Lawyer of the Year
August 15, 2018 The Best Lawyers in America 2019 Recognizes 38 Crowell & Moring Attorneys
October 31, 2017 The Best Lawyers in America 2018 Recognizes 40 Crowell & Moring Lawyers
October 30, 2015 21 Crowell & Moring Lawyers Recognized by the International Who's Who of Business Lawyers 2015
September 8, 2014 Crowell & Moring Adds Advertising Law Pro to Its APRM Group