Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

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Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 20, 2013 12:02 pm

Anyone have any thoughts on Latham's Bankruptcy/Restructuring practice in NYC? I know Jan Baker is a big name who represents debtors and Mitchell Seider seems to have a strong creditor's practice.

Also, what are peoples' perception of Latham post 2009 layoffs? The firm had strong revenue growth the past two years: http://www.americanlawyer.com/PubArticl ... 1120110008.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Dec 21, 2013 10:06 pm

OK, not great. No longer a serious debtor player. Doesn't really do any committee work. Lots of other bankruptcy shops you'd be better off at, but these days, any port in a storm.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Dec 22, 2013 1:01 am

Latham has become more financially conservative since the 2009 layoffs.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 23, 2013 12:16 am

Latham NYC is virtually a nobody on the restructuring scene. If you can't get into a top-notch bankruptcy firm like Kirkland or Weil, it would even be better to head to a "less-prestigious" NYC office like MoFo or Milbank that does more restructuring work (although nowhere to the level of Kirkland or Weil). The drawback is that you would get to a MoFo NYC and decide you don't want to do restructuring work, and you would be more screwed in that scenario than if you got to Latham NYC and decided you don't want to do restructuring work (i.e. Latham NYC is generally a stronger office overall than MoFo NYC).

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 23, 2013 2:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OK, not great. No longer a serious debtor player. Doesn't really do any committee work. Lots of other bankruptcy shops you'd be better off at, but these days, any port in a storm.


This is a very odd statement. Until fairly recently, Latham was almost strictly involved with creditor-side bankruptcy. However, they have been adding debtor-side bankruptcy lawyers recently and are becoming a more serious player. Already Chambers Band 3 in NY. Added Paul Harner in addition to Jan Baker. Look on BankruptcyData.com.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 23, 2013 5:25 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OK, not great. No longer a serious debtor player. Doesn't really do any committee work. Lots of other bankruptcy shops you'd be better off at, but these days, any port in a storm.


This is a very odd statement. Until fairly recently, Latham was almost strictly involved with creditor-side bankruptcy. However, they have been adding debtor-side bankruptcy lawyers recently and are becoming a more serious player. Already Chambers Band 3 in NY. Added Paul Harner in addition to Jan Baker. Look on BankruptcyData.com.


Latham may be Band 3, but unlike some other practice areas, it seems like restructuring work is really concentrated at the top firms. If you want to do restructuring work, then you should go to Kirkland, Weil, or potentially Skadden (and I guess if you're okay with creditor work, then places like Davis Polk would work). But certainly not Latham.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Dec 24, 2013 12:02 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OK, not great. No longer a serious debtor player. Doesn't really do any committee work. Lots of other bankruptcy shops you'd be better off at, but these days, any port in a storm.


This is a very odd statement. Until fairly recently, Latham was almost strictly involved with creditor-side bankruptcy. However, they have been adding debtor-side bankruptcy lawyers recently and are becoming a more serious player. Already Chambers Band 3 in NY. Added Paul Harner in addition to Jan Baker. Look on BankruptcyData.com.


Well, shit. Paul Harner!?? Now you're talking man.

You drop these names like we're supposed to know them.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 24, 2013 12:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OK, not great. No longer a serious debtor player. Doesn't really do any committee work. Lots of other bankruptcy shops you'd be better off at, but these days, any port in a storm.


This is a very odd statement. Until fairly recently, Latham was almost strictly involved with creditor-side bankruptcy. However, they have been adding debtor-side bankruptcy lawyers recently and are becoming a more serious player. Already Chambers Band 3 in NY. Added Paul Harner in addition to Jan Baker. Look on BankruptcyData.com.


Ahhhhahaha.

Ok, 2L. Poop on the advice of a fifth year NYC bankruptcy associate.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 25, 2013 2:38 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OK, not great. No longer a serious debtor player. Doesn't really do any committee work. Lots of other bankruptcy shops you'd be better off at, but these days, any port in a storm.


This is a very odd statement. Until fairly recently, Latham was almost strictly involved with creditor-side bankruptcy. However, they have been adding debtor-side bankruptcy lawyers recently and are becoming a more serious player. Already Chambers Band 3 in NY. Added Paul Harner in addition to Jan Baker. Look on BankruptcyData.com.


Ahhhhahaha.

Ok, 2L. Poop on the advice of a fifth year NYC bankruptcy associate.


Where was advice "pooped" on? I simply bolded the part of your post that was odd and said why it was odd since it implies Latham used to be a serious debtor player. I never said Latham is currently a serious debtor player. The point of my post is that they used to do no debtor work in NYC but have been adding debtor people recently to enter the game. Glad everyone overread/misread my post. P.S. Not a 2L. :)

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 27, 2013 12:57 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OK, not great. No longer a serious debtor player. Doesn't really do any committee work. Lots of other bankruptcy shops you'd be better off at, but these days, any port in a storm.


This is a very odd statement. Until fairly recently, Latham was almost strictly involved with creditor-side bankruptcy. However, they have been adding debtor-side bankruptcy lawyers recently and are becoming a more serious player. Already Chambers Band 3 in NY. Added Paul Harner in addition to Jan Baker. Look on BankruptcyData.com.


Ahhhhahaha.

Ok, 2L. Poop on the advice of a fifth year NYC bankruptcy associate.


P.S. Not a 2L. :)


Just outed yourself as a 3L.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 30, 2013 5:28 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OK, not great. No longer a serious debtor player. Doesn't really do any committee work. Lots of other bankruptcy shops you'd be better off at, but these days, any port in a storm.


OP here. I realize Latham isn't Weil, Kirkland, or Skadden when it comes to Debtor work, but they have had some decent sized Debtor cases since Jan Baker came over from Skadden such as A123 Systems and Boston Generating. I think the bigger concern for me is that Baker is older and the Debtor work may go elsewhere when he retires.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 30, 2013 5:31 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Latham NYC is virtually a nobody on the restructuring scene. If you can't get into a top-notch bankruptcy firm like Kirkland or Weil, it would even be better to head to a "less-prestigious" NYC office like MoFo or Milbank that does more restructuring work (although nowhere to the level of Kirkland or Weil). The drawback is that you would get to a MoFo NYC and decide you don't want to do restructuring work, and you would be more screwed in that scenario than if you got to Latham NYC and decided you don't want to do restructuring work (i.e. Latham NYC is generally a stronger office overall than MoFo NYC).


OP
I know Latham has plenty of restructuring work. If they are a nobody then there are only about five firms who aren't nobodies when it comes to Restructuring.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 30, 2013 5:37 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Latham has become more financially conservative since the 2009 layoffs.


OP again.

How so?

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 30, 2013 7:45 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Latham has become more financially conservative since the 2009 layoffs.


OP again.

How so?


For one, they don't have to pay for so many of those expensive, pesky junior associates.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:14 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OK, not great. No longer a serious debtor player. Doesn't really do any committee work. Lots of other bankruptcy shops you'd be better off at, but these days, any port in a storm.


OP here. I realize Latham isn't Weil, Kirkland, or Skadden when it comes to Debtor work, but they have had some decent sized Debtor cases since Jan Baker came over from Skadden such as A123 Systems and Boston Generating. I think the bigger concern for me is that Baker is older and the Debtor work may go elsewhere when he retires.


Also US Airways, which wasn't a true debtor case because they weren't in bankruptcy, but they were still very involved in American's bankruptcy.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 31, 2013 8:25 am

What OP fails to understand (likely because he doesn't want to understand it) is that the structure of the bankruptcy market has changed. Deal flow is far less than it was a few years ago, and Kirkland has really grabbed as disproportionate share of the market. If debtor work is your dream, it's not even that there are five firms, or three firms to pick from. It is Kirkland and then everyone else.

I, frankly, would be even less inclined to work at Skadden or Weil for debtor work. These days, they're almost just as slow as everyone else (but Kirkland) with many more mouths to feed. It's been so long since Skadden had a big debtor case out of their NY office that I bet there are cobwebs on the little branded cardboard boxes everyone uses to schlep shit to Court for the first day. Why do you think Weil lopped off 20% of its bankruptcy practice? It's not just that Lehman is winding down.

But to get back to OPs question, you should assume minimal debtor work if you go to a Latham. Latham does no committee work and doesn't represent DIP lenders. It's not among the leaders in creditor practice. There's are five to ten firms you see routinely at the courthouse in almost every case, some of which are more prestigious than Latham, some of which are less (who really wants to work at Togut?). And Latham isn't in that group.

This is not to say its a bad bankruptcy group, or that there's no work. There is work. They do stuff. Rather, they are no different from 10 or 15 other midrange NY firms, all of which have talented lawyers, all of which get a mix of work and the occasional debtor case, all of which can teach you to be a heck if a bankruptcy lawyer if you want to learn. But if you get your jollies being a big swinging dick in the restructuring world - and it sounds like you do - then Latham is not the answer.

Hope this helps, and hope that you learn not to chase names sooner rather than later.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 31, 2013 10:38 am

Anonymous User wrote:What OP fails to understand (likely because he doesn't want to understand it) is that the structure of the bankruptcy market has changed. Deal flow is far less than it was a few years ago, and Kirkland has really grabbed as disproportionate share of the market. If debtor work is your dream, it's not even that there are five firms, or three firms to pick from. It is Kirkland and then everyone else.

I, frankly, would be even less inclined to work at Skadden or Weil for debtor work. These days, they're almost just as slow as everyone else (but Kirkland) with many more mouths to feed. It's been so long since Skadden had a big debtor case out of their NY office that I bet there are cobwebs on the little branded cardboard boxes everyone uses to schlep shit to Court for the first day. Why do you think Weil lopped off 20% of its bankruptcy practice? It's not just that Lehman is winding down.

But to get back to OPs question, you should assume minimal debtor work if you go to a Latham. Latham does no committee work and doesn't represent DIP lenders. It's not among the leaders in creditor practice. There's are five to ten firms you see routinely at the courthouse in almost every case, some of which are more prestigious than Latham, some of which are less (who really wants to work at Togut?). And Latham isn't in that group.

This is not to say its a bad bankruptcy group, or that there's no work. There is work. They do stuff. Rather, they are no different from 10 or 15 other midrange NY firms, all of which have talented lawyers, all of which get a mix of work and the occasional debtor case, all of which can teach you to be a heck if a bankruptcy lawyer if you want to learn. But if you get your jollies being a big swinging dick in the restructuring world - and it sounds like you do - then Latham is not the answer.

Hope this helps, and hope that you learn not to chase names sooner rather than later.


OP here.

I understand full well that the bankruptcy market is historically slow right now.

I actually think I prefer creditor side work and am looking for a firm that has a good creditor practice that does some debtor work, mainly because I know juniors at Weil/Kirkland/Skadden that only do the most menial tasks on big debtor cases.

I've heard that Kirkland is a sweatshop, so even though I agree that they have the strongest debtor practice right now, I don't think I would take a job from them even if they offered one to me (assuming I had other options).

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Dec 31, 2013 10:53 am

I've heard that Kirkland is a sweatshop


...and Latham isn't?

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 31, 2013 12:14 pm

Advice ITT is really strong. I'm a 2L who wants to do debtor work - got shut out of Weil and Kirkland but accepted SA at S&C/CSM. Any hope to lateral to Kirkland or a Weil restructuring after a few rotations/ years doing corporate. Also, aced BK and taking secured next semester. Would an SDNY or D Del clerkship help to make this transition?

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Dec 31, 2013 12:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Advice ITT is really strong. I'm a 2L who wants to do debtor work - got shut out of Weil and Kirkland but accepted SA at S&C/CSM. Any hope to lateral to Kirkland or a Weil restructuring after a few rotations/ years doing corporate. Also, aced BK and taking secured next semester. Would an SDNY or D Del clerkship help to make this transition?



You'll have no trouble so long as you get the transferable experience and those firms are hiring for those groups.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 31, 2013 3:01 pm

zweitbester wrote:
I've heard that Kirkland is a sweatshop


...and Latham isn't?


I think you work very hard at Latham, but at Kirkland they churn and burn. Plus, at Kirkland all you do as a junior is first day motions, fee apps, and handle claims objections, which gets old fast.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby thesealocust » Tue Dec 31, 2013 3:08 pm

I'd be shocked if Latham and Kirkland had materially different work for junior associates.

I'd actually be shocked if any major law firms had materially different work for juniors, holding practice area constant.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Dec 31, 2013 3:09 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
zweitbester wrote:
I've heard that Kirkland is a sweatshop


...and Latham isn't?


I think you work very hard at Latham, but at Kirkland they churn and burn. Plus, at Kirkland all you do as a junior is first day motions, fee apps, and handle claims objections, which gets old fast.


You're an idiot if you think the lifestyle at either firm is measurably different. The only reason you would work less at Latham is if there was less work coming in.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 31, 2013 3:51 pm

thesealocust wrote:I'd be shocked if Latham and Kirkland had materially different work for junior associates.

I'd actually be shocked if any major law firms had materially different work for juniors, holding practice area constant.


Then you don't know the major differences between debtor and creditor work.

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Re: Latham NYC Bankruptcy/Restructuring Practice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 31, 2013 4:04 pm

zweitbester wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Advice ITT is really strong. I'm a 2L who wants to do debtor work - got shut out of Weil and Kirkland but accepted SA at S&C/CSM. Any hope to lateral to Kirkland or a Weil restructuring after a few rotations/ years doing corporate. Also, aced BK and taking secured next semester. Would an SDNY or D Del clerkship help to make this transition?



You'll have no trouble so long as you get the transferable experience and those firms are hiring for those groups.


While I generally agree that you could lateral from Sullivan & Cromwell/Cravath to Weil/Kirkland's bankruptcy practice, it would be difficult to get "transferable experience" doing debtor's work at Sullivan & Cromwell/Cravath because besides Kodak (which was a one off case for Sullivan & Cromwell), neither of those firms represent debtors.

There are plenty of other firms with better bankruptcy practices even though the firm as a whole may be less prestigious.




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