Practice Specialities of the V15

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mness
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Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby mness » Sat May 05, 2012 10:04 am

What are your opinions of the practice area specialties of the V15? For example, WLRK is probably strongest in corporate, especially M&As. Williams and Connolly is really a lit firm, especially white collar and government investigations. What about the others?

Anonymous User
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 05, 2012 10:12 am

Kirkland is strongest in private equity, bankruptcy, and litigation.

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TaipeiMort
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby TaipeiMort » Sat May 05, 2012 10:23 am

mness wrote:What are your opinions of the practice area specialties of the V15? For example, WLRK is probably strongest in corporate, especially M&As. Williams and Connolly is really a lit firm, especially white collar and government investigations. What about the others?


The V15 is heavily weighted toward NYC and M&A because there are so many NYC deals attorneys. You can't really use it as a legitimate ranking for anything except for a ranking of large-scale deals firms in NYC. Many firms carry subspecialties, but they get their ranking from being great at M&A and capital markets. For example, I don't think anyone would argue that Cleary Gotlieb is a better firm than Kirkland when you evaluate Kirkland's amazing PE specialty and strong lit department. The rankings are also biased against lit firms-- I don't think anyone would argue that Paul Weiss, Simpson Thacher, or Davis Polk are better firms than Williams Connolly, Quinn, or Boies. Lit boutiques which are more prestigous/ profitable than Wachtell like Keker, Susman, and Bartlitt Beck don't even get included.

If you want to evaluate which firms are great in other areas, look at Vault's sub-specialty guides. There are firms ranked in the 50s and 60s which have much more law prestige than a few of the M&A NYC V25 ever will because they are essentially big boutiques which are amazing in a niche area but also carry on ancillary litigation and M&A work to capture full revenue potential from their clients.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 10:24 am

WLRK: Repping targets on mega M&A
S&C: Mega M&A. Cap markets.
Cravath: mega M&A, litigation
DPW: cap markets, mega M&A, FIG
Skadden: mega M&A, cap markets, litigation
Cleary: mega M&A, cap markets
Simpson: mega PE deals,cap markets
Weil: bankruptcy
Kirkland: middle market PE, bankruptcy, litigation, and IP
Covington: litigation, regulatory work (more?)
Paul Weiss: litigation, rising M&A and PE practice, growing IP practice

rad lulz
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby rad lulz » Sat May 05, 2012 10:45 am

Just use chambers bro. HTH.

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Julio_El_Chavo
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Julio_El_Chavo » Sat May 05, 2012 11:47 am

Fresh Prince wrote:WLRK: Repping targets on mega M&A
S&C: Mega M&A. Cap markets.
Cravath: mega M&A, litigation
DPW: cap markets, mega M&A, FIG
Skadden: mega M&A, cap markets, litigation
Cleary: mega M&A, cap markets
Simpson: mega PE deals,cap markets
Weil: bankruptcy
Kirkland: middle market PE, bankruptcy, litigation, and IP
Covington: litigation, regulatory work (more?)
Paul Weiss: litigation, rising M&A and PE practice, growing IP practice


No wai, Paul Weiss does IP now?

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Old Gregg
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 11:49 am

Julio_El_Chavo wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:WLRK: Repping targets on mega M&A
S&C: Mega M&A. Cap markets.
Cravath: mega M&A, litigation
DPW: cap markets, mega M&A, FIG
Skadden: mega M&A, cap markets, litigation
Cleary: mega M&A, cap markets
Simpson: mega PE deals,cap markets
Weil: bankruptcy
Kirkland: middle market PE, bankruptcy, litigation, and IP
Covington: litigation, regulatory work (more?)
Paul Weiss: litigation, rising M&A and PE practice, growing IP practice


No wai, Paul Weiss does IP now?


Took a big Weil rainmaker. Intent is to grow the practice.

keg411
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby keg411 » Sat May 05, 2012 12:00 pm

Julio_El_Chavo wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:WLRK: Repping targets on mega M&A
S&C: Mega M&A. Cap markets.
Cravath: mega M&A, litigation
DPW: cap markets, mega M&A, FIG
Skadden: mega M&A, cap markets, litigation
Cleary: mega M&A, cap markets
Simpson: mega PE deals,cap markets
Weil: bankruptcy
Kirkland: middle market PE, bankruptcy, litigation, and IP
Covington: litigation, regulatory work (more?)
Paul Weiss: litigation, rising M&A and PE practice, growing IP practice


No wai, Paul Weiss does IP now?


Have a friend who has been doing IP lit at PW for a couple years now.

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Julio_El_Chavo
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Julio_El_Chavo » Sat May 05, 2012 12:09 pm

keg411 wrote:
Julio_El_Chavo wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:WLRK: Repping targets on mega M&A
S&C: Mega M&A. Cap markets.
Cravath: mega M&A, litigation
DPW: cap markets, mega M&A, FIG
Skadden: mega M&A, cap markets, litigation
Cleary: mega M&A, cap markets
Simpson: mega PE deals,cap markets
Weil: bankruptcy
Kirkland: middle market PE, bankruptcy, litigation, and IP
Covington: litigation, regulatory work (more?)
Paul Weiss: litigation, rising M&A and PE practice, growing IP practice


No wai, Paul Weiss does IP now?


Have a friend who has been doing IP lit at PW for a couple years now.


It fits the trend of prestigious firms jumping on the IP bandwagon.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 12:14 pm

Not really. Trend is for superstars to strike out on their own.

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Julio_El_Chavo
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Julio_El_Chavo » Sat May 05, 2012 12:21 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:Not really. Trend is for superstars to strike out on their own.


As in, start their own firms? Is this just in IP you're talking about? 20 years ago, most big NYC firms had no IP practice to speak of.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 12:23 pm

Julio_El_Chavo wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:Not really. Trend is for superstars to strike out on their own.


As in, start their own firms? Is this just in IP you're talking about? 20 years ago, most big NYC firms had no IP practice to speak of.


IP people. Think Desmarais and Powers.

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thesealocust
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby thesealocust » Sat May 05, 2012 12:24 pm

Fresh Prince's list is very accurate.

In litigation, basically all of the V15ish firms are doing corporate defense (shareholder suits, white collar, foreign corrupt practices act, etc.) in some form or another. Plaintiff's side work falls to either smaller plaintiff's firms that get less press, or still-basically-big-law firms like Quinn and Boies.

Another big practice that the NYC firms have is credit/banking&finance - similar to capital markets, but one-on-one with the bank instead of using the bank as an intermediary to the public markets.

Also, DPW has a great FIG department, but so do a lot of the other big NYC (and DC) firms nowadays. Covington, Cleary, S&C off the top of my head, but I bet all of them at least dabble in it.

Finally, (transactional) tax practices largely exist to service other practices, but there a bunch of big and highly respected ones in the V15.
Last edited by thesealocust on Sat May 05, 2012 4:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Detrox
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Detrox » Sat May 05, 2012 12:29 pm

So there is a rough consensus that in the V15 all of the firms are roughly equivalent when it comes to litigation departments, or are there some that are distinctly better than others? If it's the latter can anyone give a rough breakdown?

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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 05, 2012 12:31 pm

How do Latham, debevoise and GDC fit into all of this?

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Old Gregg
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 12:32 pm

None distinctively better barring W&C. Differences are in more in form of type of work. Shareholder suits versus toxic torts and products liability.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 12:35 pm

Anonymous User wrote:How do Latham, debevoise and GDC fit into all of this?


I know I'll get haters for this, but surprisingly Deb was not elite by any metric in the 2012 amlaw numbers.

Anyways, Debis good for PE and white collar lit. If you have the grades for deb, though, you can do a lot better.

Latham: mega M&A
GDC: litigation, some corp but not really a player on the scene,

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thesealocust
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby thesealocust » Sat May 05, 2012 2:31 pm

You can approximate almost all of this info by looking up Chambers & Partners rankings then looking up the size of the department in the firm.

Highly respected department + large department = specialty of the firm.

Those two don't always go hand in hand. There are some firms with a very well respected but small practice while other firms have an equally or better respected gigantic practice. Bankruptcy and weil + firms that aren't Weil come to mind.

imchuckbass58
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby imchuckbass58 » Sat May 05, 2012 3:01 pm

Anonymous User wrote:How do Latham, debevoise and GDC fit into all of this?


Debevoise is good at PE - particularly fund formation (probably the best for that), but also quite good at buyouts. Lit department is mainly white collar , but also a lot of international arb and soft IP (copyright/TM). The international arb group is actually one of the best, but the field is pretty small in general, so it's not huge.

GDC has a great lit department firmwide, but strengths really vary by office. Obviously DC does a lot of appellate, whereas NY is more diversified. Not a really big player in corporate in NY, but pretty prominent M&A/cap markets practice on the west coast.

Latham is kind of very good (but not "the best") at everything - think Skadden, but slightly smaller. Relatively more prominent on the west coast since there are fewer big firms there.

imchuckbass58
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby imchuckbass58 » Sat May 05, 2012 3:07 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:WLRK: Repping targets on mega M&A
S&C: Mega M&A. Cap markets.
Cravath: mega M&A, litigation
DPW: cap markets, mega M&A, FIG
Skadden: mega M&A, cap markets, litigation
Cleary: mega M&A, cap markets
Simpson: mega PE deals,cap markets
Weil: bankruptcy
Kirkland: middle market PE, bankruptcy, litigation, and IP
Covington: litigation, regulatory work (more?)
Paul Weiss: litigation, rising M&A and PE practice, growing IP practice


I think this is a really good list, but I'd add a couple of things:

-I wouldn't say Simpson does "mega PE" whereas Kirkland does "mid market PE." Sure, STB represents Blackstone and KKR, but K&E represents Apax, Bain Capital, Madison Dearborn, Warburg Pincus, and various others, all of which are just as "mega" as Blackstone/KKR. STB also represents a bunch of smaller buyout shops.

-Both Cravath and DPW also do a lot of banking/finance and representing underwriters (banks) in M&A deals. Probably the best firms for this.

-Skadden and DPW have pretty legit bankruptcy groups, though DPW does mostly creditor-side work.

-Cravath's lit department is almost entirely securities lit and IP.

bdubs
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby bdubs » Sat May 05, 2012 4:30 pm

As usual the feedback seems very NYC centric. Granted that most of the V15 are NYC based firms, but still there are other offices and practices.

For example: Cleary has one of the top antitrust practices in the country (if not the top) in its DC office. They also have a stronger presence internationally than most of the V15.

Skadden has basically the only biglaw chancery practice in DE.

GDC is a much bigger deal on the West Coast than it is on the East Coast (barring appellate work in DC).

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Old Gregg
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Old Gregg » Sat May 05, 2012 4:41 pm

Boo fucking hoo

bdubs
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby bdubs » Sat May 05, 2012 4:44 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:Boo fucking hoo


^ Why I hate New York.

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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 05, 2012 4:47 pm

bdubs wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:Boo fucking hoo


^ Why I hate New York.


Huh? Just lamenting the fact that you're bitching and moaning. I don't really care about NYC either.

bdubs
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Re: Practice Specialities of the V15

Postby bdubs » Sat May 05, 2012 5:35 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
bdubs wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:Boo fucking hoo


^ Why I hate New York.


Huh? Just lamenting the fact that you're bitching and moaning. I don't really care about NYC either.


Original post wasn't intended to bitch, just to point out a few practice area specialties outside of NYC. The OP asked about specialties, not about NYC offices.




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