Biglaw in Northern Virginia?

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sj0101

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Biglaw in Northern Virginia?

Postby sj0101 » Sun Oct 02, 2016 11:47 pm

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Last edited by sj0101 on Thu Dec 01, 2016 2:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

haus

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Re: Biglaw in Northern Virginia?

Postby haus » Mon Oct 03, 2016 12:40 am

Although this is not my kettle of fish, I have been working in Northern Virginia for roughly two decades. I suspect that the biggest corporate presence (and thus likely the biggest customers for the law firms) in the area are government/military contractors (a.k.a. beltway bandits), and to a lesser extent tech companies that are either based in NoVa or have significant presence here.

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Re: Biglaw in Northern Virginia?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 03, 2016 10:22 am

Associate in a NoVa satellite office here.

(1) The bulk of our work is for clients not based in NoVa, for the same types of clients the main office supports. There is some work from local government contractor/defense/aerospace/tech clients, but that's not our focus.

(2) Associates in satellite office will always be at some disadvantage because it takes more time/effort to build relationships with the key people in the main office. However, the partners out here are all influential enough firmwide that I haven't seen that be a real issue. Also haven't observed issues with politics within the satellite office, offer rates or associate churn. We're very disciplined in who we give SA or lateral offers to because a single miss can have a disproportionate impact if someone isn't a fit or leaves quickly

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Re: Biglaw in Northern Virginia?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 03, 2016 10:36 am

Anonymous User wrote:Associate in a NoVa satellite office here.

(1) The bulk of our work is for clients not based in NoVa, for the same types of clients the main office supports. There is some work from local government contractor/defense/aerospace/tech clients, but that's not our focus.

(2) Associates in satellite office will always be at some disadvantage because it takes more time/effort to build relationships with the key people in the main office. However, the partners out here are all influential enough firmwide that I haven't seen that be a real issue. Also haven't observed issues with politics within the satellite office, offer rates or associate churn. We're very disciplined in who we give SA or lateral offers to because a single miss can have a disproportionate impact if someone isn't a fit or leaves quickly


FWIW I summered in an office similar to the above, and can confirm from what I (was allowed) to see.

Partners seem to carry a book of business large enough (NOVA & National clients) that often times main DC office had to assist on our work.

From a lifestyle point of view, there seems to be WAY less of a facetime requirement in NOVA offices compared to the DC counterpart. Everyone is likely to be connected 24/7, but I know the DC summers saw noticed associates staying later (8pm +) while the building in NOVA was empty by 5-6pm. Culturally, maybe a little more "Family style" in NOVA just because of location. (you can't exactly walk to the bars and walk home though uber changes this)

Downsides, there are certain practices NOVA may not fully support. Regulatory/ white collar/ securities/ finance work (except real estate). Most of the work either involved government contractors or originated from gov contractors (corporate & protests & L&E & real estate & M&A).

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Re: Biglaw in Northern Virginia?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 21, 2017 1:35 pm

I have a lateral interview coming up in the northern Virginia office of a big firm. I have no ties to the area. I currently work at a big firm in a secondary market a few hours away. Any tips on how I can answer the why Northern Virginia question?

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Re: Biglaw in Northern Virginia?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 21, 2017 1:38 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I have a lateral interview coming up in the northern Virginia office of a big firm. I have no ties to the area. I currently work at a big firm in a secondary market a few hours away. Any tips on how I can answer the why Northern Virginia question?

I would guess it's close enough to DC to not be much of an issue. If you have a family you could play up school quality if you really wanted, or just generally liking the area.

I'm saying this as someone who works in DC and lives in Northern Virginia though, so one of the above associates may have a different take.

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Re: Biglaw in Northern Virginia?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 21, 2017 2:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I have a lateral interview coming up in the northern Virginia office of a big firm. I have no ties to the area. I currently work at a big firm in a secondary market a few hours away. Any tips on how I can answer the why Northern Virginia question?


Why did you apply to Nova offices? As opposed to DC?

most associates in my experience have either a va undergrad or went to a nearby school. Or lived in dc or grew up somewhere nearby.

If none (likely because you're asking), many Nova residents did not grow up in Nova. One of the largest fed gov areas, many people came from elsewhere (like they do in NYC) because the amount of jobs available.

I'll echo above, Nova is a great place to raise a family. The schools are great. Nova is a huge and continually expanding market for tech/ gov con/ regulatory/ real estate.

If you're from a nearby secondary market (philly/ pittsburg/ Baltimore/ richmond) it may be pretty easy to build a story as a natural progression in your career. The work here is better/ more substantive (unlikely to be true tho), better to raise a family, etc.

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Re: Biglaw in Northern Virginia?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jul 22, 2017 4:26 pm

Thanks. I applied to openings at firms in Northern Virginia and D.C. I figured it maybe easier to get an interview at a northern Virginia office, so I applied there as well. I unfortunately do not have any family nearby but I do live in one of those nearby secondary markets.



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