Firms to love

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:32 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:K&E? OMM? Cadwalader?


Am I the only one who read this list as sarcasm?


hah...may have missed that. there seem to be a number of people who really like K&E though.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:35 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:K&E? OMM? Cadwalader?


I can't be the only person who has been severely warned off Cadwalader by both 3Ls and associates/partners I've met at other firms. It always seems to happen that when firms with an abusive/unpleasant culture come up in conversation, that name is mentioned. Everyone's experience will be different, obviously, but I don't think Cadwalader belongs on the "firms to love" thread.


From my talks with associates, everyone's experience is not different in this case. Unless you're a partner who loves abusing associates, nobody really loves that firm.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:40 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:K&E? OMM? Cadwalader?


I can't be the only person who has been severely warned off Cadwalader by both 3Ls and associates/partners I've met at other firms. It always seems to happen that when firms with an abusive/unpleasant culture come up in conversation, that name is mentioned. Everyone's experience will be different, obviously, but I don't think Cadwalader belongs on the "firms to love" thread.


From my talks with associates, everyone's experience is not different in this case. Unless you're a partner who loves abusing associates, nobody really loves that firm.


I've heard of 3Ls with offers from Cadwalader going through the shitstorm that is 3L OCI just to avoid ending up there. Trading up happens, but Cadwalader is the only firm I've heard of where multiple SAs redo OCI just to get away from it.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:49 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
What are the hours like at Sidley NY, compared to the average NY firm?

...
My impression is that people work hard at Sidley NY, but no harder than peer firms similarly situated/regarded in NYC (V15).


My info comes from knowing people at Sidley in Chi, but the cultures of both offices are apparently similar, so take from this what you will. The people on partner track are in the office till 8 or 9 every night & work at least 10- or 11-hour days, similar to most NYC biglaw. Other people work varying hours based on their own personal situations. For example, some working mothers have extremely flexible hours & the capacity to work from home, and don't work anything close to 10 hours a day. Also, people who are planning on leaving for another job opportunity (maybe in-house work, maybe a completely unrelated career) don't seem to kill themselves in order to bring their hours up much higher than 2,000. So while you obviously have to expect to work very hard for your first couple years like you would anywhere else, I think that what you do after that is more a function of where you are in life and what you want from the job than keyed to any particular requirements or expectations.

One note on bonuses is that while you will get the normal Cravath market bonus for making 2,000 hours, with the hours you work on top of that, your bonus will increase proportionally (not sure of the scale, sorry). Nice thing to know. :)


Wow, that sounds awesome, and similar to the Kirkland model. My only concern with that is whether the Sidley NY office offers the same thing. Back when firms almost all gave bar study living stipends, the Chi stipend was 10k and the NY office was 6-8k. [Does Sidley still offer bar living stipends at either office?]

User avatar
romothesavior
Posts: 14772
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2009 4:29 pm

Re: Firms to love

Postby romothesavior » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:55 pm

If you want a lifestyle firm, you shouldn't be looking in NYC, or even the coasts really. Midwest and the south FTW.

I just had a CB with a firm in a mid-sized Midwest market that has a billable "goal" (truly not a requirement) of 1800-1900, pays six figures in a low COL city, has far better benefits than most large firms, and has a young, down-to-earth vibe among their attorneys. One 8th year associate told me the most she has billed in a single year was like 2150, and she usually does less than 2000 (as do almost all attorneys at the firm). And not only that, but the work the attorneys do there in years 2 and 3 are comparable to what senior associates do at big firms in NYC (regular courtroom exposure, depositions, daily client interaction, and even possibly arguing an appellate case or two). Sure, they don't pay 160k+, but IMO, ~110,000 (with 5-10k bonus) for ~2000 billables in a cheap city >>>>> 200k for 2,500-3,000 in billables in Manhattan.

Yes it is only an anecdote, and a lot of firms around here are run more like NYC firms than the one I had a CB with (so maybe they bill 2,200 hours instead of 2,000 :shock: ), but in general, the lifestyle at firms around here will be much, much better than even the most "lifestyle friendly" firms in D.C., NYC, and even Chicago, etc. Still a lot of work, but much more manageable. Some people wouldn't give up a big city like NYC to come to a smaller city for anything in the world, and that is understandable, but in terms of pure lifestyle, the firms around here are hard to beat for the money.

Of course, the trouble (as I have discovered this fall) is landing a job like this. :(

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 08, 2011 11:59 pm

romothesavior wrote:If you want a lifestyle firm, you shouldn't be looking in NYC, or even the coasts really. Midwest and the south FTW.

I just had a CB with a firm in a mid-sized Midwest market that has a billable "goal" (truly not a requirement) of 1800-1900, pays six figures in a low COL city, has far better benefits than most large firms, and has a young, down-to-earth vibe among their attorneys. One 8th year associate told me the most she has billed in a single year was like 2150, and she usually does less than 2000 (as do almost all attorneys at the firm). And not only that, but the work the attorneys do there in years 2 and 3 are comparable to what senior associates do at big firms in NYC (regular courtroom exposure, depositions, daily client interaction, and even possibly arguing an appellate case or two). Sure, they don't pay 160k+, but IMO, ~110,000 (with 5-10k bonus) for ~2000 billables in a cheap city >>>>> 200k for 2,500-3,000 in billables in Manhattan.

Yes it is only an anecdote, and a lot of firms around here are run more like NYC firms than the one I had a CB with (so maybe they bill 2,200 hours instead of 2,000 :shock: ), but in general, the lifestyle at firms around here will be much, much better than even the most "lifestyle friendly" firms in D.C., NYC, etc. Still a lot of work, but much more manageable.

Of course, the trouble (as I have discovered this fall) is landing a job like this. :(


I clerked at a firm over the past summer that starts attorneys at $100k and has a billable goal of 1700.

User avatar
romothesavior
Posts: 14772
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2009 4:29 pm

Re: Firms to love

Postby romothesavior » Fri Sep 09, 2011 12:00 am

Anonymous User wrote:I clerked at a firm over the past summer that starts attorneys at $100k and has a billable goal of 1700.

What city/region, and how did you like it?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 09, 2011 12:00 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
What are the hours like at Sidley NY, compared to the average NY firm?

...
My impression is that people work hard at Sidley NY, but no harder than peer firms similarly situated/regarded in NYC (V15).


My info comes from knowing people at Sidley in Chi, but the cultures of both offices are apparently similar, so take from this what you will. The people on partner track are in the office till 8 or 9 every night & work at least 10- or 11-hour days, similar to most NYC biglaw. Other people work varying hours based on their own personal situations. For example, some working mothers have extremely flexible hours & the capacity to work from home, and don't work anything close to 10 hours a day. Also, people who are planning on leaving for another job opportunity (maybe in-house work, maybe a completely unrelated career) don't seem to kill themselves in order to bring their hours up much higher than 2,000. So while you obviously have to expect to work very hard for your first couple years like you would anywhere else, I think that what you do after that is more a function of where you are in life and what you want from the job than keyed to any particular requirements or expectations.

One note on bonuses is that while you will get the normal Cravath market bonus for making 2,000 hours, with the hours you work on top of that, your bonus will increase proportionally (not sure of the scale, sorry). Nice thing to know. :)


Wow, that sounds awesome, and similar to the Kirkland model. My only concern with that is whether the Sidley NY office offers the same thing. Back when firms almost all gave bar study living stipends, the Chi stipend was 10k and the NY office was 6-8k. [Does Sidley still offer bar living stipends at either office?]


I remember reading on ATL bonus watch that the NY office was offering above-market bonuses in addition to Chi. Can't find the article now though, sorry. :(

Lawyerhead
Posts: 40
Joined: Sun Jul 24, 2011 10:55 pm

Re: Firms to love

Postby Lawyerhead » Fri Sep 09, 2011 8:53 am

Fresh Prince wrote:The problem is that I know plenty of miserable people at all of these firms, and they're all really not that good.


Keep in mind that many people are miserable simply because they hate big law, period. Or, more commonly, being a lawyer in general. Many people confuse misery because of a firm with misery with bug law/being a lawyer.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 09, 2011 5:00 pm

sebastian0622 wrote:This is easy: any firm that pays decent but doesn't work you to death. Basically, just a small sliver of firms, most of them probably small offices that fly under the radar and mostly hire laterals.

I don't care how well a firm treats me and how nice their office is, if I'm working 60+ hours per week, I will not be a happy person. I don't see how anyone could be.


So what you're saying is you have never had a job that didn't pay by the hour. Anyone I know works 60+ hours. Teachers work 60+ hours for a lot of the year. Nurses, social workers, any government job, anyone in music, television or entertainment. These jobs are all 60 hours per week, please I worked 60 hours a week when I worked in a restaurant. good luck!

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 09, 2011 5:12 pm

Shouldn't someone in this thread be loving on Arnold and Porter, at least at their DC headquarters? I know they didn't make the Fortune best places to work list this year, but that's the first time in like 10 years. What's more, there were no attorney layoffs as a result of the recession and their new hours guideline only requires 1800 of an associate's hours to be commercially billable, while allowing for 200 hours of pro bono and business development to count towards the 2000 hour requirement. NALP says that associates are averaged 2220 hours TOTAL work last year, and people I know at the firm report taking most of their vacation every year.
I know they aren't exactly a market leader in compensation, but is that really the only reason people aren't super high on these guys?

User avatar
Julio_El_Chavo
Posts: 803
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 11:09 pm

Re: Firms to love

Postby Julio_El_Chavo » Fri Sep 09, 2011 5:30 pm

Anonymous User wrote:MTO. It's the firm SCOTUS clerks choose because they don't want to work Wachtell hours but still want top-notch work. Financially stable, good partnership prospects, work from home, excellent training for young associates, firm-wide lunch 3 days a week—all at 1,900-2,100 hours.

The only downside is that it's very difficult to get an offer in the first place.


Gibson hired 6/36 SCOTUS clerks last year. I'm not aware that MTO hired any.

User avatar
Julio_El_Chavo
Posts: 803
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 11:09 pm

Re: Firms to love

Postby Julio_El_Chavo » Fri Sep 09, 2011 5:32 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Vinson & Elkins

- Live like a king in non-NYC, non-DC markets
- Not obscenely leveraged
- Great place to be if you are a "Texan" and all that goes with that

http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/mixmast ... _twice.php


The hours are horrendous at V&E.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 09, 2011 5:33 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Shouldn't someone in this thread be loving on Arnold and Porter, at least at their DC headquarters? I know they didn't make the Fortune best places to work list this year, but that's the first time in like 10 years. What's more, there were no attorney layoffs as a result of the recession and their new hours guideline only requires 1800 of an associate's hours to be commercially billable, while allowing for 200 hours of pro bono and business development to count towards the 2000 hour requirement. NALP says that associates are averaged 2220 hours TOTAL work last year, and people I know at the firm report taking most of their vacation every year.
I know they aren't exactly a market leader in compensation, but is that really the only reason people aren't super high on these guys?


Perkins Coie also consistently makes 100 best places to work.

User avatar
snailio
Posts: 209
Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2011 2:40 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby snailio » Sat Sep 10, 2011 7:07 pm

Ok A&P and Perkins Coie added ...thank you Jebus broke thru the bakers dozen barrier!


Julio_El_Chavo wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:MTO. It's the firm SCOTUS clerks choose because they don't want to work Wachtell hours but still want top-notch work. Financially stable, good partnership prospects, work from home, excellent training for young associates, firm-wide lunch 3 days a week—all at 1,900-2,100 hours.

The only downside is that it's very difficult to get an offer in the first place.


Gibson hired 6/36 SCOTUS clerks last year. I'm not aware that MTO hired any.


:shock:
I did not know this ....still MTO stays on the list

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 10, 2011 11:18 pm

Julio_El_Chavo wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Vinson & Elkins

- Live like a king in non-NYC, non-DC markets
- Not obscenely leveraged
- Great place to be if you are a "Texan" and all that goes with that

http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/mixmast ... _twice.php


The hours are horrendous at V&E.


Define "horrendous." Are you talking like 2500+ as horrendous?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 11, 2011 1:35 pm

Julio_El_Chavo wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:MTO. It's the firm SCOTUS clerks choose because they don't want to work Wachtell hours but still want top-notch work. Financially stable, good partnership prospects, work from home, excellent training for young associates, firm-wide lunch 3 days a week—all at 1,900-2,100 hours.

The only downside is that it's very difficult to get an offer in the first place.


Gibson hired 6/36 SCOTUS clerks last year. I'm not aware that MTO hired any.


Gibson is a great firm and apparently had a great year hiring SCOTUS clerks, but Munger has something like 20 SCOTUS clerks overall. More than ten percent of Munger lawyers are former SCOTUS clerks, and I'm pretty sure no other major law firm comes close, maybe some lit boutiques but certainly not Gibson. Munger may even have a higher absolute number of SCOTUS clerks than Gibson, despite having less than one-fifth the number of lawyers.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 11, 2011 5:23 pm

Love Boies Schiller.

Because when you are working all night - you know you are making money. There never comes a point when you are working for an additional pittance...

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 11, 2011 5:33 pm

What firms to love in TX?

User avatar
snailio
Posts: 209
Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2011 2:40 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby snailio » Sat Sep 17, 2011 11:30 pm

Anonymous User wrote:What firms to love in TX?



Susman?

sebastian0622
Posts: 276
Joined: Fri Feb 26, 2010 10:30 pm

Re: Firms to love

Postby sebastian0622 » Wed Sep 21, 2011 3:21 am

Anonymous User wrote:
sebastian0622 wrote:This is easy: any firm that pays decent but doesn't work you to death. Basically, just a small sliver of firms, most of them probably small offices that fly under the radar and mostly hire laterals.

I don't care how well a firm treats me and how nice their office is, if I'm working 60+ hours per week, I will not be a happy person. I don't see how anyone could be.


So what you're saying is you have never had a job that didn't pay by the hour. Anyone I know works 60+ hours. Teachers work 60+ hours for a lot of the year. Nurses, social workers, any government job, anyone in music, television or entertainment. These jobs are all 60 hours per week, please I worked 60 hours a week when I worked in a restaurant. good luck!


I've worked multiple jobs that don't pay by the hour. You need to get out more. My last job was as a manager for a federal agency. It was 8 to 4:30, five days a week. I worked overtime three times in one year, and I got paid additional for it.

My wife is a manager for a financial company and she works 45-50 hours per week tops.

I also know of at least two law firms where the lawyers average no more than 50 hours per week.

User avatar
snailio
Posts: 209
Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2011 2:40 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby snailio » Mon Sep 24, 2012 11:02 pm

Well since the old "firms to avoid" has resurfaced, might as well fire this one back up.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 24, 2012 11:17 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Julio_El_Chavo wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:MTO. It's the firm SCOTUS clerks choose because they don't want to work Wachtell hours but still want top-notch work. Financially stable, good partnership prospects, work from home, excellent training for young associates, firm-wide lunch 3 days a week—all at 1,900-2,100 hours.

The only downside is that it's very difficult to get an offer in the first place.


Gibson hired 6/36 SCOTUS clerks last year. I'm not aware that MTO hired any.


Gibson is a great firm and apparently had a great year hiring SCOTUS clerks, but Munger has something like 20 SCOTUS clerks overall. More than ten percent of Munger lawyers are former SCOTUS clerks, and I'm pretty sure no other major law firm comes close, maybe some lit boutiques but certainly not Gibson. Munger may even have a higher absolute number of SCOTUS clerks than Gibson, despite having less than one-fifth the number of lawyers.


What offices did GDC hire them? I'd guess that some, but not all, of that has to do with the fact that MTO has offices only in LA and SF, while GDC has offices all over the place, including DC.

I agree with the MTO sentiment though, from what I can tell it is a great place to work. GDC also seems like a great firm, though.

nonprofit-prophet
Posts: 844
Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 11:10 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby nonprofit-prophet » Mon Sep 24, 2012 11:22 pm

snailio wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:What firms to love in TX?



Susman?


Absolutely. They pay the best bonuses and have tons of perks. If you can hack the hours, you make partner. And partner compensation is amazing. Also, you actually get to practice law.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273145
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Firms to love

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 24, 2012 11:24 pm

nonprofit-prophet wrote:
snailio wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:What firms to love in TX?



Susman?


Absolutely. They pay the best bonuses and have tons of perks. If you can hack the hours, you make partner. And partner compensation is amazing. Also, you actually get to practice law.


Hours are Susman are bruuuutal though. Only firm I did a callback at where people were noticeably tired, bags under their eyes, etc. Sure the money is good but I don't know if i'd put it on the "firms to love" list.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.