S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

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S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 8:45 pm

Hi all,

Would really love to hear some opinions on pros and cons of working for each of the above firms. This is for a SA, but I will likely not be applying for clerkships (at least not for a year or two), so looking at this being the place I am really starting my career at.

A little about me:
(1) love NY, definitely want to be there for the long haul (I'm a little nervous about Quinn in NY as compared to the "traditional NY" firms)
(2) would like to stay in biglaw for 4-5 years, potentially exit out to a boutique firm or USAO
(3) want a place where I will get a lot of training and experience (leanly-staffed/lots of responsibility/maybe also a place that will let you work on pro bono to get trial experience/etc.)
(4) want a place where people will go out for a drink with co-workers when they want to and have the time but don't look down on you for peacing out instead of going out (i.e. not fratty)

I would just generally like to hear people's thoughts on these places. Thanks guys!

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 9:09 pm

FWIW, I accepted an offer with Debevoise in part because they seemed to really fit your #4 factor (maybe a little less social than that). Also, they seem to be more dedicated to Pro Bono than other V15 firms, and I know a first year there who got significant trial experience with his involvement in a pro bono case.
Just a couple random thoughts...

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Arbiter213 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:01 pm

SullCrom seems like a slam dunk for you.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:43 pm

Arbiter213 wrote:SullCrom seems like a slam dunk for you.


Could you expand a little bit on what you mean by that? Do you think it hits on each of those 4 factors I listed above? The reputation of SullCrom was, I thought, not as great as some of the others on there for litigation and the type of culture I'm looking for. Do you think they don't live up to the bad rep?

It does allow me to live in BK easier than the others ;)

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby imchuckbass58 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 10:54 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
(1) love NY, definitely want to be there for the long haul (I'm a little nervous about Quinn in NY as compared to the "traditional NY" firms)
(2) would like to stay in biglaw for 4-5 years, potentially exit out to a boutique firm or USAO
(3) want a place where I will get a lot of training and experience (leanly-staffed/lots of responsibility/maybe also a place that will let you work on pro bono to get trial experience/etc.)
(4) want a place where people will go out for a drink with co-workers when they want to and have the time but don't look down on you for peacing out instead of going out (i.e. not fratty)


(1) All the firms are equally good in that respect
(2) Again, not much of a difference. Paul Weiss and Debevoise might have marginally better connections with USAOs because of their high concentration of former AUSAs/USAs, but it's probably not going to make a big difference
(3) Quinn is pretty heavily leveraged - may get less substantive work in that regard
(4) None of these firms are pretty fratty, but as far as culture is concerned S&C and Quinn are reputed for having competitive, hard-charging cultures (highly hours-driven, some screamers among partners, etc). Debevoise is reputed to be particularly nice (arguably to the point of boring), while Paul Weiss is probably somewhere in between.

The last point is probably what I'd make a decision based on. The four firms have pretty different cultures.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 11:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Arbiter213 wrote:SullCrom seems like a slam dunk for you.


Could you expand a little bit on what you mean by that? Do you think it hits on each of those 4 factors I listed above? The reputation of SullCrom was, I thought, not as great as some of the others on there for litigation and the type of culture I'm looking for. Do you think they don't live up to the bad rep?

It does allow me to live in BK easier than the others ;)


If Chambers is valid for lit in NYC, S&C is band 1 for gen. commercial and securities. PW is too, but Deb. and Quinn are not. Quinn kind of makes sense because they are less established, but that seemed to concern you anyway. It probably comes down to PW or S&C, pick the culture you like more.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2012 11:07 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Arbiter213 wrote:SullCrom seems like a slam dunk for you.


Could you expand a little bit on what you mean by that? Do you think it hits on each of those 4 factors I listed above? The reputation of SullCrom was, I thought, not as great as some of the others on there for litigation and the type of culture I'm looking for. Do you think they don't live up to the bad rep?

It does allow me to live in BK easier than the others ;)

S&C is probably the best securities litigation and white collar defense firm in New York and is also one of 7 Band-One general litigation firms in NYC. It's reputation isn't all about litigation because unlike Paul Weiss (and obviously Quinn) it also has a very large and phenomenal corporate practice (top financial institutions and #2 or 3 M&A firm in NY). But it's reputation for litigation is not worse than Paul Weiss or Quinn, not at all. It's just not all it's known for. Still, litigators make up about half o S&C's lawyers so its definitely not Wachtell. S&C is not a corporate powerhouse with a litigation practice on the side, like some other V10s. In fact, many would say that CSM and S&C are the two best options for litigation in NY. Especially as S&C litigation is much less leveraged than PW. Also, in terms of AUSA as an exit-option, there is a pretty strong consensus among those I've spoken to that S&C is the absolute best for this. It is the best in NY for white collar work and therefore is a natural feeder for AUSA and SEC and there are a number of prominent partners there who had high level gov jobs. Also of note, it's important not to discount a firm's transactional strength when looking at litigation opportunities. For example, the financial institutions group is really a mixture of regulatory, transactional, and litigation and draws in securities lawyers and litigators. http://www.sullcrom.com/Financial-Insti ... Practices/

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Arbiter213 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 11:50 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Arbiter213 wrote:SullCrom seems like a slam dunk for you.


Could you expand a little bit on what you mean by that? Do you think it hits on each of those 4 factors I listed above? The reputation of SullCrom was, I thought, not as great as some of the others on there for litigation and the type of culture I'm looking for. Do you think they don't live up to the bad rep?

It does allow me to live in BK easier than the others ;)

S&C is probably the best securities litigation and white collar defense firm in New York and is also one of 7 Band-One general litigation firms in NYC. It's reputation isn't all about litigation because unlike Paul Weiss (and obviously Quinn) it also has a very large and phenomenal corporate practice (top financial institutions and #2 or 3 M&A firm in NY). But it's reputation for litigation is not worse than Paul Weiss or Quinn, not at all. It's just not all it's known for. Still, litigators make up about half o S&C's lawyers so its definitely not Wachtell. S&C is not a corporate powerhouse with a litigation practice on the side, like some other V10s. In fact, many would say that CSM and S&C are the two best options for litigation in NY. Especially as S&C litigation is much less leveraged than PW. Also, in terms of AUSA as an exit-option, there is a pretty strong consensus among those I've spoken to that S&C is the absolute best for this. It is the best in NY for white collar work and therefore is a natural feeder for AUSA and SEC and there are a number of prominent partners there who had high level gov jobs. Also of note, it's important not to discount a firm's transactional strength when looking at litigation opportunities. For example, the financial institutions group is really a mixture of regulatory, transactional, and litigation and draws in securities lawyers and litigators. http://www.sullcrom.com/Financial-Insti ... Practices/


^He did it better than I could've. Almost makes me wish I'd taken the offer.

As for the culture- S&C has less than no facetime requirement, so they absolutely do not care how or where you get your work done so long as it gets done.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby imchuckbass58 » Mon Sep 24, 2012 12:06 am

Anonymous User wrote:Also, in terms of AUSA as an exit-option, there is a pretty strong consensus among those I've spoken to that S&C is the absolute best for this. It is the best in NY for white collar work and therefore is a natural feeder for AUSA and SEC and there are a number of prominent partners there who had high level gov jobs.


Not trying to say that S&C doesn't have a great practice, but I think it's a bit of a stretch to say it's "the best" for AUSA exit options or white collar work.

Debevoise has Mary Jo White (former USA for SDNY), Mukasey (former US Attorney General), and Lord Goldsmith (former UK Attorney General) all practicing primarily White Collar / Investigations. Most of White's top deputies are also partners at Debevoise (including the Chief Assistants for both SDNY and EDNY) - white collar is really their sweet spot.

As for Paul Weiss, you have Mark Pomerantz and Ted Wells, who along with David Boies is one of the best trial lawyers practicing in NY, both of whom do a ton of white collar, so they're no slouch either...

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 24, 2012 1:00 am

imchuckbass58 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
(1) love NY, definitely want to be there for the long haul (I'm a little nervous about Quinn in NY as compared to the "traditional NY" firms)
(2) would like to stay in biglaw for 4-5 years, potentially exit out to a boutique firm or USAO
(3) want a place where I will get a lot of training and experience (leanly-staffed/lots of responsibility/maybe also a place that will let you work on pro bono to get trial experience/etc.)
(4) want a place where people will go out for a drink with co-workers when they want to and have the time but don't look down on you for peacing out instead of going out (i.e. not fratty)


(1) All the firms are equally good in that respect
(2) Again, not much of a difference. Paul Weiss and Debevoise might have marginally better connections with USAOs because of their high concentration of former AUSAs/USAs, but it's probably not going to make a big difference
(3) Quinn is pretty heavily leveraged - may get less substantive work in that regard
(4) None of these firms are pretty fratty, but as far as culture is concerned S&C and Quinn are reputed for having competitive, hard-charging cultures (highly hours-driven, some screamers among partners, etc). Debevoise is reputed to be particularly nice (arguably to the point of boring), while Paul Weiss is probably somewhere in between.

The last point is probably what I'd make a decision based on. The four firms have pretty different cultures.


Point #3...wut? Heavily leveraged and less substantive work? Maybe it's the bourbon I've had tonight but I don't understand what that sentence means. Also every Quinn person I've ever spoken with said they got thrown into things VERY early. Maybe that's more the CA offices but still....

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Sep 24, 2012 1:17 am

Anonymous User wrote:
imchuckbass58 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
(1) love NY, definitely want to be there for the long haul (I'm a little nervous about Quinn in NY as compared to the "traditional NY" firms)
(2) would like to stay in biglaw for 4-5 years, potentially exit out to a boutique firm or USAO
(3) want a place where I will get a lot of training and experience (leanly-staffed/lots of responsibility/maybe also a place that will let you work on pro bono to get trial experience/etc.)
(4) want a place where people will go out for a drink with co-workers when they want to and have the time but don't look down on you for peacing out instead of going out (i.e. not fratty)


(1) All the firms are equally good in that respect
(2) Again, not much of a difference. Paul Weiss and Debevoise might have marginally better connections with USAOs because of their high concentration of former AUSAs/USAs, but it's probably not going to make a big difference
(3) Quinn is pretty heavily leveraged - may get less substantive work in that regard
(4) None of these firms are pretty fratty, but as far as culture is concerned S&C and Quinn are reputed for having competitive, hard-charging cultures (highly hours-driven, some screamers among partners, etc). Debevoise is reputed to be particularly nice (arguably to the point of boring), while Paul Weiss is probably somewhere in between.

The last point is probably what I'd make a decision based on. The four firms have pretty different cultures.


Point #3...wut? Heavily leveraged and less substantive work? Maybe it's the bourbon I've had tonight but I don't understand what that sentence means. Also every Quinn person I've ever spoken with said they got thrown into things VERY early. Maybe that's more the CA offices but still....


Yeah, I definitely didn't understand that point. Quinn has tons of work and a tiny summer class (18 last year, I think they're shooting for 20 this year). From what I've heard, it's the most trial experience you will get, period. I worry about it not being a "native NY firm" for exit options though...

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 25, 2012 12:54 am

What is the culture like at S&C?

What about Quinn?

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:17 am

Anonymous User wrote:What is the culture like at S&C?

What about Quinn?


See item 4 in the above post?

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby quakeroats » Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:32 am

What are the chances you won't like litigation? Every firm you listed has a number of transactional practices, with one exception.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 25, 2012 7:26 pm

quakeroats wrote:What are the chances you won't like litigation? Every firm you listed has a number of transactional practices, with one exception.


That's my worry about Quinn (and to a much lesser extent Paul Weiss, which has corporate but is known for its litigation department). I've had litigation experience (i.e. DOJ/USAO) that was very trial-based, so I think I would be willing to take the chance on it if it was more like that kind of work. And if I hated it, there would, of course, be 3L OCI at the end of the day (as a last resort).

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 25, 2012 8:15 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
quakeroats wrote:What are the chances you won't like litigation? Every firm you listed has a number of transactional practices, with one exception.


That's my worry about Quinn (and to a much lesser extent Paul Weiss, which has corporate but is known for its litigation department). I've had litigation experience (i.e. DOJ/USAO) that was very trial-based, so I think I would be willing to take the chance on it if it was more like that kind of work. And if I hated it, there would, of course, be 3L OCI at the end of the day (as a last resort).


FWIW, I summered at S&C and worked primarily with the white-collar group (Criminal Defense & Investigations, or "CDIG"). Not only are the partners/special counsel pretty much all former NYC-area clerks and AUSAs from EDNY/SDNY, they're also all really fun people and great to work with.

And the revolving door to the DOJ is for real.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
quakeroats wrote:What are the chances you won't like litigation? Every firm you listed has a number of transactional practices, with one exception.


That's my worry about Quinn (and to a much lesser extent Paul Weiss, which has corporate but is known for its litigation department). I've had litigation experience (i.e. DOJ/USAO) that was very trial-based, so I think I would be willing to take the chance on it if it was more like that kind of work. And if I hated it, there would, of course, be 3L OCI at the end of the day (as a last resort).


FWIW, I summered at S&C and worked primarily with the white-collar group (Criminal Defense & Investigations, or "CDIG"). Not only are the partners/special counsel pretty much all former NYC-area clerks and AUSAs from EDNY/SDNY, they're also all really fun people and great to work with.

And the revolving door to the DOJ is for real.


Thanks! Good to know! I'd heard of PW and Debevoise's connections to DOJ but less about S&C on that front.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 25, 2012 10:02 pm

What about going to USAO from Quinn? Would that pose a problem?

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 27, 2012 3:20 pm

Anonymous User wrote:What about going to USAO from Quinn? Would that pose a problem?


I don't think it would pose a problem, per se. But there isn't the same kind of flow into and out of USAO from Quinn as the other places (yet).

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 27, 2012 3:26 pm

Had to choose between S&C and Deb. Both will provide nice funnels into USAO and provide strong White Collar experience if that's your goal. The culture difference between these particular firms is large so that needs to be kept in mind as each firm has its own unique culture (perhaps least so with PW, but definitely the others).

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 29, 2012 9:20 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Had to choose between S&C and Deb. Both will provide nice funnels into USAO and provide strong White Collar experience if that's your goal. The culture difference between these particular firms is large so that needs to be kept in mind as each firm has its own unique culture (perhaps least so with PW, but definitely the others).


Which did you end up choosing, if you don't mind my asking? I'm leaning S&C. Deb was almost too nice and quiet.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 30, 2012 1:43 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Had to choose between S&C and Deb. Both will provide nice funnels into USAO and provide strong White Collar experience if that's your goal. The culture difference between these particular firms is large so that needs to be kept in mind as each firm has its own unique culture (perhaps least so with PW, but definitely the others).


Which did you end up choosing, if you don't mind my asking? I'm leaning S&C. Deb was almost too nice and quiet.


Go with what you feel fits best.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 30, 2012 11:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Had to choose between S&C and Deb. Both will provide nice funnels into USAO and provide strong White Collar experience if that's your goal. The culture difference between these particular firms is large so that needs to be kept in mind as each firm has its own unique culture (perhaps least so with PW, but definitely the others).


Which did you end up choosing, if you don't mind my asking? I'm leaning S&C. Deb was almost too nice and quiet.


Go with what you feel fits best.


The idea that someone would pick S&C over Deb for fit is astonishing to me, but then that's why I'm going to the latter.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Arbiter213 » Sun Sep 30, 2012 11:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Had to choose between S&C and Deb. Both will provide nice funnels into USAO and provide strong White Collar experience if that's your goal. The culture difference between these particular firms is large so that needs to be kept in mind as each firm has its own unique culture (perhaps least so with PW, but definitely the others).


Which did you end up choosing, if you don't mind my asking? I'm leaning S&C. Deb was almost too nice and quiet.


Go with what you feel fits best.


The idea that someone would pick S&C over Deb for fit is astonishing to me, but then that's why I'm going to the latter.


I know someone who picked S&C over Skadden, Cleary, Cravath, and Davis Polk for fit reasons.

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Re: S&C/Paul Weiss/Quinn/Debevoise (all NY)

Postby Bronte » Mon Oct 01, 2012 12:01 am

Arbiter213 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The idea that someone would pick S&C over Deb for fit is astonishing to me, but then that's why I'm going to the latter.


I know someone who picked S&C over Skadden, Cleary, Cravath, and Davis Polk for fit reasons.


I think his point is that Debevoise is known for a having a uniquely good culture among its peers, whereas the same cannot be said of Skadden, Cleary, or Cravath, with Davis Polk maybe being an exception.




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