Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

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acrossthelake
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby acrossthelake » Fri May 04, 2012 1:38 pm

Thanks for the info on the Boston market, Blindmelon. :)

Does anybody know what sorta grades you need from H to be competitive at Goodwin/Wilmer/Ropes?

concurrent fork
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby concurrent fork » Fri May 04, 2012 2:07 pm

Blindmelon wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Blindmelon wrote: I heard that Ropes may defer people and they have been pushing for voluntary PI deferrals.



I am interested in why this is happening. Anyone have any idea?
Anon bc I am affiliated with the firm but don't know much about its health (read: law school student who does not have any inside info).


No idea why - this is just word of mouth from Ropes people. They typically give 100% offers, but I have heard of them cold offering. They are a bit odd in that their summer class is absolutely massive - almost four times Goodwin and double Wilmer. I have no idea how they handle that many new attorneys, but I think they have a much higher associate to partner ratio than the other two.

Firm health-wise, I think they are all doing well. The Boston market overall seems healthy as there was actually a decent amount of 3L hiring. I just think GP/WH are doing especially well given that WH is one of the top IP lit firms and GP's IP lit group is still growing after they rocked it picking up tons of great attorneys from former Testa.

This does not surprise me at all. IIRC, Ropes boosted their 2011 summer class back to 2007 levels (while other Boston firms were still around 50% or less in some cases). Even if they were doing extremely well, this seems like a questionable decision given the volatility in the market.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 04, 2012 2:16 pm

Blindmelon wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Blindmelon wrote:I only really know Boston, but it seems like Goodwin/Wilmer are doing really well. Goodwin hired a large group of 3Ls (3 from BU I believe) and Wilmer is supposedly giving out large stipends and early start-dates. This is probably because IP lit work is really moving now. I heard that Ropes may defer people and they have been pushing for voluntary PI deferrals.



Blindmelon, what else do you know about Goodwin?


What do you want to know? I'm at BC/BU so I know people going to pretty much every Boston firm. The people I know going there are all incredibly smart and good folk. Pay/bonus-wise they are in-line with Ropes and others - just Wilmer seems to be the most generous with a bar stipend + expenses.

Anonymous User wrote:
Blindmelon wrote: I heard that Ropes may defer people and they have been pushing for voluntary PI deferrals.



I am interested in why this is happening. Anyone have any idea?
Anon bc I am affiliated with the firm but don't know much about its health (read: law school student who does not have any inside info).


No idea why - this is just word of mouth from Ropes people. They typically give 100% offers, but I have heard of them cold offering. They are a bit odd in that their summer class is absolutely massive - almost four times Goodwin and double Wilmer. I have no idea how they handle that many new attorneys, but I think they have a much higher associate to partner ratio than the other two.

Firm health-wise, I think they are all doing well. The Boston market overall seems healthy as there was actually a decent amount of 3L hiring. I just think GP/WH are doing especially well given that WH is one of the top IP lit firms and GP's IP lit group is still growing after they rocked it picking up tons of great attorneys from former Testa.


I take it Goodwin has recovered from all the layoffs that occured in 2009? Has associate morale improved?

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 04, 2012 3:13 pm

Blindmelon wrote:I only really know Boston, but it seems like Goodwin/Wilmer are doing really well. Goodwin hired a large group of 3Ls (3 from BU I believe) and Wilmer is supposedly giving out large stipends and early start-dates. This is probably because IP lit work is really moving now. I heard that Ropes may defer people and they have been pushing for voluntary PI deferrals.



The Ropes PI/deferral issue isn't unique to the Boston office, either. Have friend in NY that was 'reminded' about their voluntary PI deferral program.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri May 04, 2012 10:20 pm

what are the grade cutoffs like from BU/BC for OCI for Wilmer/Ropes/Goodwin?

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Blindmelon
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Blindmelon » Fri May 04, 2012 11:22 pm

Anonymous User wrote:what are the grade cutoffs like from BU/BC for OCI for Wilmer/Ropes/Goodwin?


Hard to tell with no data, but Ropes is typically top 10%; GP/WH are pretty hard to tell as they typically go for the top 10%ers but will randomly offer way below.

flcath
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby flcath » Fri May 04, 2012 11:26 pm

I have the definitive answer:

We don't know.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby MTC87 » Sat May 05, 2012 9:56 am

Anonymous User wrote:Even the tippy-top firms have certain issues. Cravath is very heavily leveraged, Skadden has some questionable offices, DPW has high expenses, STB is very invested in private equity, etc. If I had to pick a firm for "safest" I'd probably say S&C: they've got killer revenue per lawyer, extremely low expenses, and a well rounded, diversified practice.


Prestige-whoring T14 students the country over will have their minds blown if a v5 firm implodes. I'd like to see it happen for that reason alone.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 10:14 am

1) S&C's expenses are low because they don't compensate their associates well and they own their own offices. And their practices aren't diversified at all. Their M&A team focuses on megadeals, which aren't happening as much right now (though what little there is, S&C is dominating with a handful of other firms). The reason their profits are so high is that they work their associates to death and use alternative billing arrangements.

S&C isn't a firm for trial lawyers, it's a second rate debtors shop for BK, and has no IP practice to speak of. How are they diversified???

2) Simpson's focus on private equity isn't the problem. It's the focus on mega PE deals that is, thought they are adapting, in large part because their big PE clients are doing smaller deals. But those deals aren't as profitable as your KKR RJR Nabiscos.

Very few firms are invulnerable or even safe bets, even throughout the V10. And the ones that are are out of the grasp of 99% of the people here.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 10:17 am

MTC87 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Even the tippy-top firms have certain issues. Cravath is very heavily leveraged, Skadden has some questionable offices, DPW has high expenses, STB is very invested in private equity, etc. If I had to pick a firm for "safest" I'd probably say S&C: they've got killer revenue per lawyer, extremely low expenses, and a well rounded, diversified practice.


Prestige-whoring T14 students the country over will have their minds blown if a v5 firm implodes. I'd like to see it happen for that reason alone.


You're a pretty shitty person for saying that more than a thousand people should lose their jobs for the sake of seeing some reaction. And you are the same person that makes law school a shitty experience.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 05, 2012 11:04 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Anyone have a (admittedly quasi-)educated opinion on the stability / health of Jones Day?


They were one of the very few firms who weathered the recession with very minimal layoffs (as in they let a few people go, but no mass layoffs like many peer firms), while still hiring 100% of their summers, not deferring summers, and who didn't have to freeze salaries to do it. If they were that strong during the very worst years, I wouldn't worry about them as the economy improves. They essentially brag about how well they weathered the recession, and how good a position they are in right now, so I'd say they are pretty healthy.

+1. Plus they operate as a general partnership so that each partner is on the hook for the debts and misdeeds of the others. The GP structure was one reason I summered with them--leads to generally good/safe management. Will never be toward the tops of the PPP tables as a result, but I'm OK with that. It's also a factor in their slow/steady international growth model that seems to work well without over stressing the rest of the firm (as at some other firms).

acrossthelake
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby acrossthelake » Sat May 05, 2012 11:32 am

Fresh Prince wrote:
MTC87 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Even the tippy-top firms have certain issues. Cravath is very heavily leveraged, Skadden has some questionable offices, DPW has high expenses, STB is very invested in private equity, etc. If I had to pick a firm for "safest" I'd probably say S&C: they've got killer revenue per lawyer, extremely low expenses, and a well rounded, diversified practice.


Prestige-whoring T14 students the country over will have their minds blown if a v5 firm implodes. I'd like to see it happen for that reason alone.


You're a pretty shitty person for saying that more than a thousand people should lose their jobs for the sake of seeing some reaction. And you are the same person that makes law school a shitty experience.


+1

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sunynp
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby sunynp » Sat May 05, 2012 11:39 am

acrossthelake wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:
MTC87 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Even the tippy-top firms have certain issues. Cravath is very heavily leveraged, Skadden has some questionable offices, DPW has high expenses, STB is very invested in private equity, etc. If I had to pick a firm for "safest" I'd probably say S&C: they've got killer revenue per lawyer, extremely low expenses, and a well rounded, diversified practice.


Prestige-whoring T14 students the country over will have their minds blown if a v5 firm implodes. I'd like to see it happen for that reason alone.


You're a pretty shitty person for saying that more than a thousand people should lose their jobs for the sake of seeing some reaction. And you are the same person that makes law school a shitty experience.


+1

Yes, and here's a news flash. If a V5 firm fails, how bad do you think the legal market will be for everyone else? For that to happen, the law market and the economy would have to be worse than during the recession. These firms survived the recession but only by major cost cutting. If the market crashes to a point where they can't survive even by cutting expenses, everyone is going to be hurting.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby keg411 » Sat May 05, 2012 11:43 am

The last thing I want to see is another firm collapse. Anyone who could wish something like that has serious problems. I want to see all of the firms, from WLRK to shitlaw ID firms do well, for me and for my peers. Firm collapses are depressing as all get out and aren't good for any of us.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 11:44 am

A rising tide lifts all boats.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 05, 2012 4:52 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Anyone have a (admittedly quasi-)educated opinion on the stability / health of Jones Day?


They were one of the very few firms who weathered the recession with very minimal layoffs (as in they let a few people go, but no mass layoffs like many peer firms), while still hiring 100% of their summers, not deferring summers, and who didn't have to freeze salaries to do it. If they were that strong during the very worst years, I wouldn't worry about them as the economy improves. They essentially brag about how well they weathered the recession, and how good a position they are in right now, so I'd say they are pretty healthy.


According to NALP, Jones Day no-offered people in their Dallas, Houston, San Diego, and San Francisco offices.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 5:04 pm

They've done a good job stealthing too, mostly because of how black box the firm is.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby keg411 » Sat May 05, 2012 5:17 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Anyone have a (admittedly quasi-)educated opinion on the stability / health of Jones Day?


They were one of the very few firms who weathered the recession with very minimal layoffs (as in they let a few people go, but no mass layoffs like many peer firms), while still hiring 100% of their summers, not deferring summers, and who didn't have to freeze salaries to do it. If they were that strong during the very worst years, I wouldn't worry about them as the economy improves. They essentially brag about how well they weathered the recession, and how good a position they are in right now, so I'd say they are pretty healthy.


According to NALP, Jones Day no-offered people in their Dallas, Houston, San Diego, and San Francisco offices.


I heard Jones Day DC no-offered this past year. Apparently, they don't give offers until after OCI. (This is second/third hand, but from trustworthy sources). Doesn't mean they're not doing fine financially; it's possible they just didn't like those people.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 05, 2012 5:20 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:They've done a good job stealthing too, mostly because of how black box the firm is.


Everyone I know there makes market (a few people in NY, and some in DC), and some make above, including market-rate bonuses worked into their salaries. They don't use the black box compensation as a reason to undercompensate, or else people would leave

concurrent fork
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby concurrent fork » Sat May 05, 2012 5:59 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:They've done a good job stealthing too, mostly because of how black box the firm is.


Everyone I know there makes market (a few people in NY, and some in DC), and some make above, including market-rate bonuses worked into their salaries. They don't use the black box compensation as a reason to undercompensate, or else people would leave

Did you really ask your friends how much they make?

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 05, 2012 6:04 pm

concurrent fork wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:They've done a good job stealthing too, mostly because of how black box the firm is.


Everyone I know there makes market (a few people in NY, and some in DC), and some make above, including market-rate bonuses worked into their salaries. They don't use the black box compensation as a reason to undercompensate, or else people would leave

Did you really ask your friends how much they make?


Oh def not. I was looking into firms, and was put in touch with some folks at JD, since that was one of the firms I was considering. I gently referenced that I was a bit unsure about the black box system, and the first guy sort of laughed it off, said he made above market (surprised he straight up told me this), and said that, among his close friends at the firm, they all make right around market, with some coming out a bit above (and this includes market bonus). His overarching point was that, if the firm was just using it as a pretext to undercompensate folks who deserve market or above, then people would be leaving the firm in droves, yet the firm has one of the highest retention rates among big firms.

Maybe it has to do with this sample being limited to NYC and DC people, which are 2 of their strongest offices?

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Old Gregg
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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 6:14 pm

as a pretext to undercompensate folks who deserve market or above, then people would be leaving in droves


Not the soundest logic there. Presumes that people have better options.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 05, 2012 6:17 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:
as a pretext to undercompensate folks who deserve market or above, then people would be leaving in droves


Not the soundest logic there. Presumes that people have better options.


If $$ is the only thing we are considering, then a JD associate would most certainly be able to find a lower-ranked Vault firm that pays lockstep market. The lower-ranked firm may not offer the same substantive opportunities or whatever else comes along with working for a V20 firm, but perhaps some people define "better" solely as getting paid market salary. If thats how we define "better", then I'm sure they have those options available, since you can go pretty far down the Vault rankings, and still have a market salary in NY/DC. If by "better", we mean full lockstep AND a move up in the Vault rankings to the next "tier" of firms, then I agree that we can't assume they necessarily have that option available at a whim.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 6:32 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:
as a pretext to undercompensate folks who deserve market or above, then people would be leaving in droves


Not the soundest logic there. Presumes that people have better options.


If $$ is the only thing we are considering, then a JD associate would most certainly be able to find a lower-ranked Vault firm that pays lockstep market.


Depends on lateral market. Hot for some levels, but weak for many others.

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Re: Which law firms may follow Dewey..and which law firms won't?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 05, 2012 6:36 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:
as a pretext to undercompensate folks who deserve market or above, then people would be leaving in droves


Not the soundest logic there. Presumes that people have better options.


If $$ is the only thing we are considering, then a JD associate would most certainly be able to find a lower-ranked Vault firm that pays lockstep market.


Depends on lateral market. Hot for some levels, but weak for many others.


Again, we are primarily talking NY (the most healthy legal market in the country right now). Though a few were from DC, where I'd imagine the lateral market isn't quite as hot. I'm ever the cynic, but it just wouldn't make sense to me how the NY office keeps up such a high retention rate if they were systematically undercompensating people given the ability to lateral, or at least find a lockstep firm that is lower ranked. And the (albeit limited) anecdotal evidence I have seems to entirely corroborate that.




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