Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

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Which firm?

Kirkland
4
29%
Covington
3
21%
Irell
7
50%
 
Total votes: 14

Anonymous User
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Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 03, 2013 6:16 pm

I've narrowed my SA options to these three and would love some input. I'm definitely litigation over corporate but beyond that don't have it narrowed, and would prefer to get to be a generalist for the foreseeable future, rather than be forced down a specific tube. I guess my number one criterion in choosing a firm is that I want one with a strong national litigation reputation.

I have at least a moderate preference to be in SF rather than LA. I see a lot of Irell boosterism on this board and am wondering whether an opportunity at Irell should be taken, in spite of a geographical preference weighing against it.

All three of these offices have good SA-fulltime offer rates, so the rest of my priorities are:
- Reasonably interesting/meaningful work early, as well as early responsibility
- Financial stability of firm
- Humane hours (to the extent possible)
- Strong exit options. Care very little about partnership prospects as I almost certainly don't intend to stick around longterm. Want good exit options particularly to government-type positions (whether AUSA or possibly work in DC)

Thanks!

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brotherdarkness
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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby brotherdarkness » Tue Sep 03, 2013 6:23 pm

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Last edited by brotherdarkness on Thu Mar 27, 2014 11:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

legends159
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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby legends159 » Tue Sep 03, 2013 7:09 pm

Covington SF does a lot of insurance work. I had a law school friend go there before leaving after a year to clerk and she said it was about 80% insurance work. That could have been her experience as it will be partner dependent but just a point of reference.

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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 03, 2013 7:59 pm

Disclaimer: I faced a similar choice and chose Irell.

Kirkland's patent lit department is separate from the rest of their lit department so if you want you can theoretically avoid doing it by not being in the department. Irell on the other hand doesn't have separate departments within lit so if you don't want to have to decide whether you want patent lit or not by the end of your summer, you can test it out later. Both Irell and KE SF seem to be about 50% patent lit, though as noted above you might be able to avoid it at KE SF by going into their general lit department. At Irell you can likely avoid it by choosing to do other kinds of work but if a patent case blows up you might get pulled on to help out for at least a bit.

While KE and Covington have national reputations, their SF offices aren't known for being outstanding in lit (though I will say that you will likely be able to be cross staffed with other offices so I'm not sure how much of a factor that is). Irell seems to be more well known for lit than either of those offices. Irell also seems to have a stronger white collar practice per Chambers than either of those firms and my unsubstantiated guess is that it may be easier to go from white collar to AUSA than from other areas of lit. That said, both KE and Covington are national so I'm not sure how much that factors in.

I felt that Irell offers early responsibility and meaningful work. I think that both KE and Irell are very financially stable, don't really know about Covington. The hours at KE and Irell may not be as bad as some NYC firms, but they do seem to be higher than CA firms tend to be, again not sure about Covington. Irell seemed less of a sweatshop than the rumors I've heard, but I'm not sure I would call it humane.

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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 03, 2013 11:23 pm

Thanks for the thoughts so far. To the most recent anon - I take it you just finished your summer at Irell? Was it actually your impression that the sweatshop rep is overblown? I've been emailing with a couple associates there who haven't done much to reassure me that the hours are not insane.

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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 03, 2013 11:41 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for the thoughts so far. To the most recent anon - I take it you just finished your summer at Irell? Was it actually your impression that the sweatshop rep is overblown? I've been emailing with a couple associates there who haven't done much to reassure me that the hours are not insane.


What have they said?

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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 03, 2013 11:41 pm

I summered with Covington in CA doing IP lit and thoroughly enjoyed it. Very good quality of work. I would definitely recommend. Also seems stable enough to me -- compared to some other (esp NY firms) they seem more careful with their money and less extravagant. I don't need to tell you about DC exit options from Covington. How you work with DC partners is entirely up to you.

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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 04, 2013 12:01 am

Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for the thoughts so far. To the most recent anon - I take it you just finished your summer at Irell? Was it actually your impression that the sweatshop rep is overblown? I've been emailing with a couple associates there who haven't done much to reassure me that the hours are not insane.


Most of the Irell associates I spoke with assured me that the average hours billed is about 2100 for young associates, 100 above their bonus cutoff. 2100 hours is still a lot but I think their reputation implies worse.

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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 04, 2013 12:16 am

Anonymous User wrote:Was it actually your impression that the sweatshop rep is overblown? I've been emailing with a couple associates there who haven't done much to reassure me that the hours are not insane.

It's hard to tell and keep in mind that all of it was merely my impression. I got the feeling that things were in the 2100-2200 range on average (one associate mentioned that he/she was at 2000 each year, but I also recall that there might not be billable credit for certain random things like recruiting). I'm not saying that that is great, just that it was better than I expected. Though of course I could be completely wrong on that point.

I don't know about Covington but neither KE nor Irell are really considered quality of life firms. My guess is that trying to differentiate between these firms based on hours is not a meaningful exercise.

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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 04, 2013 12:57 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for the thoughts so far. To the most recent anon - I take it you just finished your summer at Irell? Was it actually your impression that the sweatshop rep is overblown? I've been emailing with a couple associates there who haven't done much to reassure me that the hours are not insane.


What have they said?


OP here. I'd rather not go into the precise details of what was said, but in general the answers' form tended to be "yeah we work a lot BUT it's worth it b/c the work/people/etc. are great". Basically the answer to the concern wasn't "don't worry the hours aren't that long" but rather "don't worry it's worth it." Which, in all fairness, it might be - I did get the impression that they have awesome work and that they'd win the "meaningful work and early responsibility" criterion hands-down among these three options.

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Re: Kirkland SF vs. Covington SF vs. Irell

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 22, 2013 8:01 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for the thoughts so far. To the most recent anon - I take it you just finished your summer at Irell? Was it actually your impression that the sweatshop rep is overblown? I've been emailing with a couple associates there who haven't done much to reassure me that the hours are not insane.


What have they said?


OP here. I'd rather not go into the precise details of what was said, but in general the answers' form tended to be "yeah we work a lot BUT it's worth it b/c the work/people/etc. are great". Basically the answer to the concern wasn't "don't worry the hours aren't that long" but rather "don't worry it's worth it." Which, in all fairness, it might be - I did get the impression that they have awesome work and that they'd win the "meaningful work and early responsibility" criterion hands-down among these three options.


Is Irell known for being intellectual?




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