boutique firms

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plenipotentiary
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boutique firms

Postby plenipotentiary » Wed Jul 11, 2012 11:09 am

What's the best resource for researching boutique law firms?

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legalese_retard
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Re: boutique firms

Postby legalese_retard » Wed Jul 11, 2012 11:14 am


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Re: boutique firms

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jul 11, 2012 11:22 am

What are the benefits of a top boutique firm over biglaw? Downsides?

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Re: boutique firms

Postby LOLyer » Wed Jul 11, 2012 11:34 am

tagged.

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Re: boutique firms

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 12, 2012 12:31 am

Anonymous User wrote:What are the benefits of a top boutique firm over biglaw? Downsides?


Depends on the type of boutique we are talking about.

Let's take bankruptcy, or general litigation, as an example. In both of those cases, most likely you will be staffed on a case with less people so more early responsibility (e.g. Keker Van Nest, or Klee Tuchin). It's less intense in terms of billable (sometimes) and the path to partnership can be shorter (e.g., Bartlit Beck) or easier.

Downsides? You might not want to do bankruptcy, or corporate reorg, full-time until you are actually doing it full-time.

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Re: boutique firms

Postby reasonable_man » Thu Jul 12, 2012 1:21 am

I work at a very small firm (between 5 and 10 attorneys) in NYC. I left a larger firm of about 95 lawyers to join this firm 2 years ago. 96% of the time I love it. I'll jump in throughout this conversation with my two cents.

I find the term boutique firm to be sort of dumb. But whatever. My firm qualifies, I guess, because at least half of our practice is a very specialized field and we are considered one of the better firms around that practice in that area. Some of the major benefits are early high level experieince. Im a 2008 grad. I've second chaired a few major trials and I've argued an appeal solo (and probably 2 dozen Motions for summary judgment). That won't occur at a large firm.

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Re: boutique firms

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 12, 2012 1:32 am

You need to know what kind of law you want to practice before you can research boutiques in that area.

I am summering at a boutique that is Chambers listed in a major market for our specialties. I think it's a good resource, but it's not the only resource. You should do some digging with the ABA section that focuses on the area you're interested in.

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Re: boutique firms

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 12, 2012 10:21 pm

reasonable_man wrote:I work at a very small firm (between 5 and 10 attorneys) in NYC. I left a larger firm of about 95 lawyers to join this firm 2 years ago. 96% of the time I love it. I'll jump in throughout this conversation with my two cents.

I find the term boutique firm to be sort of dumb. But whatever. My firm qualifies, I guess, because at least half of our practice is a very specialized field and we are considered one of the better firms around that practice in that area. Some of the major benefits are early high level experieince. Im a 2008 grad. I've second chaired a few major trials and I've argued an appeal solo (and probably 2 dozen Motions for summary judgment). That won't occur at a large firm.


I'm sure it varies, but can you give any insight on earnings potential? How does the partnership potential of a boutique firm compare with the (presumably) higher starting salary of biglaw?

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Re: boutique firms

Postby reasonable_man » Thu Jul 12, 2012 10:52 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:I work at a very small firm (between 5 and 10 attorneys) in NYC. I left a larger firm of about 95 lawyers to join this firm 2 years ago. 96% of the time I love it. I'll jump in throughout this conversation with my two cents.

I find the term boutique firm to be sort of dumb. But whatever. My firm qualifies, I guess, because at least half of our practice is a very specialized field and we are considered one of the better firms around that practice in that area. Some of the major benefits are early high level experieince. Im a 2008 grad. I've second chaired a few major trials and I've argued an appeal solo (and probably 2 dozen Motions for summary judgment). That won't occur at a large firm.


I'm sure it varies, but can you give any insight on earnings potential? How does the partnership potential of a boutique firm compare with the (presumably) higher starting salary of biglaw?


As far as money goes, it very much depends on the type of work the firm does. My hours are far less (in total number), but I do not earn biglaw money. I do however earn more than 100k and my bonuses are pretty good. In short, its not bad.

The partnership potential also depends on the size of the firm and the firm's attitude toward partnership. In my case, I believe that partnership is a pretty good possibility several years down the line (and my boss has hinted at this in many conversations.

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Re: boutique firms

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 12, 2012 11:16 pm

reasonable_man wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:I work at a very small firm (between 5 and 10 attorneys) in NYC. I left a larger firm of about 95 lawyers to join this firm 2 years ago. 96% of the time I love it. I'll jump in throughout this conversation with my two cents.

I find the term boutique firm to be sort of dumb. But whatever. My firm qualifies, I guess, because at least half of our practice is a very specialized field and we are considered one of the better firms around that practice in that area. Some of the major benefits are early high level experieince. Im a 2008 grad. I've second chaired a few major trials and I've argued an appeal solo (and probably 2 dozen Motions for summary judgment). That won't occur at a large firm.


I'm sure it varies, but can you give any insight on earnings potential? How does the partnership potential of a boutique firm compare with the (presumably) higher starting salary of biglaw?


As far as money goes, it very much depends on the type of work the firm does. My hours are far less (in total number), but I do not earn biglaw money. I do however earn more than 100k and my bonuses are pretty good. In short, its not bad.

The partnership potential also depends on the size of the firm and the firm's attitude toward partnership. In my case, I believe that partnership is a pretty good possibility several years down the line (and my boss has hinted at this in many conversations.


This is where a lot of people distinguish a "boutique" from a small firm.

IMO a "boutique" is a firm that pays top of market or close to it, but is not a large firm (total firm size <200 attorneys, you could even go smaller)

I am summering at what I would call a "boutique" and the pay is the same as biglaw. It's generally really hard to tell what the partnership track is like because the firm is so small (in my case < 50 lawyers). I think the partners make bank. Maybe less than when they were biglaw partners (i obviously don't really know), but they enjoy their jobs a lot more.




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