DPW Associates Taking Q's

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v5junior

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby v5junior » Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:13 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
ambrajdurbra131313 wrote:
v5junior wrote:
Just to give some outsider perspective, I know at least 2 other peer firms that provide the exact same coverage function + institutional effort to respect vacation. DPW is in the top tier of vacation protection, but they're not literally the only firm that goes through these efforts.

As the other poster mentioned (I think it was OP), I think the real distinction here is places that have "unlimited vacation." Avoid like the plague.


That's awesome. What other firms are like this?

I know Cravath does


I was thinking of CSM + STB. Would not be surprised if there were others.

cavalier1138

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby cavalier1138 » Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:17 pm

Lit associate(s):

How is the pro bono culture? Is taking on pro bono work encouraged/discouraged/ignored? Do you feel like you have enough time to put extra hours in on pro bono?

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:22 pm

Also to Lit associate, how are the exit ops into MidLaw? Is this a reasonable jump?

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 24, 2017 1:32 pm

At my BL firm a much higher percentage of males (over females) are making partner. This is not an immediate concern for me but it is disheartening. Is there any viable data or even a sense that in the foreseeable future this disparity will narrow?

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 24, 2017 1:39 pm

cavalier1138 wrote:Lit associate(s):

How is the pro bono culture? Is taking on pro bono work encouraged/discouraged/ignored? Do you feel like you have enough time to put extra hours in on pro bono?

Pro bono is definitely encouraged and is seen as the best way to develop skills you won't have the opportunity to develop as junior working on cases for paid clients. I did quite a bit of pro bono and came away with several court appearances, a deposition, and a bunch of motions drafted. You are, of course, expected to balance it with your other work which takes priority.

My only gripe about the pro bono is the selection. There's a line for things like criminal appeals which some people have been waiting on for years. It's also hard to get a specific type of work when you actually have the availability. Often you'll check in the pro bono coordinator when you are in a lull but know that your cases will be coming back, and have to take what is available at that time. Then they'll reach out to you later when you are busy again telling you that a case matching your interests came in. There's also a back channel for pro bono work which I think is a better way to get it. Some partners/counsel routinely get Supreme Court pro bono amicus work or other kinds of matters, and they tend to pull on associates that they have worked with.

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 24, 2017 1:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Also to Lit associate, how are the exit ops into MidLaw? Is this a reasonable jump?

Honestly, I don't recall anyone leaving for midlaw, but I don't think that was because of an inability to land a position. Fed gov was by far the most common exit. I received some interest from high-end plaintiffs firms coming out of my clerkship as well as white collar boutiques, but I can't give you anything specific to midlaw. My guess is that you would have no trouble at all.

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 24, 2017 3:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:Lit associate(s):

How is the pro bono culture? Is taking on pro bono work encouraged/discouraged/ignored? Do you feel like you have enough time to put extra hours in on pro bono?

Pro bono is definitely encouraged and is seen as the best way to develop skills you won't have the opportunity to develop as junior working on cases for paid clients. I did quite a bit of pro bono and came away with several court appearances, a deposition, and a bunch of motions drafted. You are, of course, expected to balance it with your other work which takes priority.

My only gripe about the pro bono is the selection. There's a line for things like criminal appeals which some people have been waiting on for years. It's also hard to get a specific type of work when you actually have the availability. Often you'll check in the pro bono coordinator when you are in a lull but know that your cases will be coming back, and have to take what is available at that time. Then they'll reach out to you later when you are busy again telling you that a case matching your interests came in. There's also a back channel for pro bono work which I think is a better way to get it. Some partners/counsel routinely get Supreme Court pro bono amicus work or other kinds of matters, and they tend to pull on associates that they have worked with.


That actually kind of blows. I mean I guess you can probably get to the USAO just by being at DPW, but I'd like at least some trial experience before leaving biglaw as a litigator. But I guess DPW and other similar firms have so much work that they really don't want their associates taking on pro bono cases with huge time commitments.

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:25 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:Lit associate(s):

How is the pro bono culture? Is taking on pro bono work encouraged/discouraged/ignored? Do you feel like you have enough time to put extra hours in on pro bono?

Pro bono is definitely encouraged and is seen as the best way to develop skills you won't have the opportunity to develop as junior working on cases for paid clients. I did quite a bit of pro bono and came away with several court appearances, a deposition, and a bunch of motions drafted. You are, of course, expected to balance it with your other work which takes priority.

My only gripe about the pro bono is the selection. There's a line for things like criminal appeals which some people have been waiting on for years. It's also hard to get a specific type of work when you actually have the availability. Often you'll check in the pro bono coordinator when you are in a lull but know that your cases will be coming back, and have to take what is available at that time. Then they'll reach out to you later when you are busy again telling you that a case matching your interests came in. There's also a back channel for pro bono work which I think is a better way to get it. Some partners/counsel routinely get Supreme Court pro bono amicus work or other kinds of matters, and they tend to pull on associates that they have worked with.


That actually kind of blows. I mean I guess you can probably get to the USAO just by being at DPW, but I'd like at least some trial experience before leaving biglaw as a litigator. But I guess DPW and other similar firms have so much work that they really don't want their associates taking on pro bono cases with huge time commitments.


What I meant was that you might not get the precise type of matter that you want. For instance, criminal opportunities are pretty limited and lots of people want them. Trial opportunities are not at all limited if you are flexible, but you can't control whether the case goes to trial when you choose to get involved. You can get on larger teams that are handling civil rights related actions, like prisoner cases, which usually have an array of pretrial work and sometimes go to trial. You can also handle things like family court cases solo, with a partner available to provide input, which often provide hearings and trials.

I was not implying that the firm does not want you to take on cases with large time commitments, and in fact most of the pro bono matters ebb and flow over a long period of time. I was trying to convey that most people reach out for pro bono opportunities when their other cases are in a lull and you have some time to burn, and because those windows are small, you are likely to take whatever happens to be available at that time.

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:37 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
cavalier1138 wrote:Lit associate(s):

How is the pro bono culture? Is taking on pro bono work encouraged/discouraged/ignored? Do you feel like you have enough time to put extra hours in on pro bono?

Pro bono is definitely encouraged and is seen as the best way to develop skills you won't have the opportunity to develop as junior working on cases for paid clients. I did quite a bit of pro bono and came away with several court appearances, a deposition, and a bunch of motions drafted. You are, of course, expected to balance it with your other work which takes priority.

My only gripe about the pro bono is the selection. There's a line for things like criminal appeals which some people have been waiting on for years. It's also hard to get a specific type of work when you actually have the availability. Often you'll check in the pro bono coordinator when you are in a lull but know that your cases will be coming back, and have to take what is available at that time. Then they'll reach out to you later when you are busy again telling you that a case matching your interests came in. There's also a back channel for pro bono work which I think is a better way to get it. Some partners/counsel routinely get Supreme Court pro bono amicus work or other kinds of matters, and they tend to pull on associates that they have worked with.


That actually kind of blows. I mean I guess you can probably get to the USAO just by being at DPW, but I'd like at least some trial experience before leaving biglaw as a litigator. But I guess DPW and other similar firms have so much work that they really don't want their associates taking on pro bono cases with huge time commitments.


What I meant was that you might not get the precise type of matter that you want. For instance, criminal opportunities are pretty limited and lots of people want them. Trial opportunities are not at all limited if you are flexible, but you can't control whether the case goes to trial when you choose to get involved. You can get on larger teams that are handling civil rights related actions, like prisoner cases, which usually have an array of pretrial work and sometimes go to trial. You can also handle things like family court cases solo, with a partner available to provide input, which often provide hearings and trials.

I was not implying that the firm does not want you to take on cases with large time commitments, and in fact most of the pro bono matters ebb and flow over a long period of time. I was trying to convey that most people reach out for pro bono opportunities when their other cases are in a lull and you have some time to burn, and because those windows are small, you are likely to take whatever happens to be available at that time.


Got it. My point was that I can take on whatever case I want really at my firm, be lead counsel, and get the experience. I just had a prisoner's right case and was lead attorney. I personally wouldn't like having to get in line for pro bono.

christianllang

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby christianllang » Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:14 pm

OP (and the other contributors)--great thread. Drop me a PM. I'm a recent DPW alum (in part) running a blog/forum on associate training/development/life (https://blacklinesandbillables.com) and would love chat about a couple of things.

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 24, 2017 9:14 pm

OP - you say you're single, do you have time to date/find a relationship (assuming that's something you're looking for)? For those cancelled weekend trips, does the firm pay for flights/cancelled reservations etc?

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 24, 2017 9:24 pm

christianllang wrote:OP (and the other contributors)--great thread. Drop me a PM. I'm a recent DPW alum (in part) running a blog/forum on associate training/development/life (https://blacklinesandbillables.com) and would love chat about a couple of things.

PM'ed

Anonymous User wrote:OP - you say you're single, do you have time to date/find a relationship (assuming that's something you're looking for)? For those cancelled weekend trips, does the firm pay for flights/cancelled reservations etc?

I think it would be difficult if my significant other/dates didn't work similar hours. But most young professionals in the city are comparably busy so it's not like my hours are the only issue here. I've found that people are pretty understanding and open to rescheduling. There are definitely weekends when I cancel because I'm just too exhausted to sustain an engaging conversation with a date even if I have the time for one. But those days don't register to me as "work is getting in the way of my dating life", they're just occasions to take care of myself and get the necessary rest.

Unfortunately, the firm doesn't reimburse you for cancelled "unofficial" weekend trips. You assume that risk by not taking vacation time for it, which is why I'm pretty cautious about booking them in the first place

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Apr 26, 2017 5:35 pm

Thank you all for answering questions. This has been really helpful to an incoming SA. Does anyone have any info on DPW tax (thinking of trying it)? E.g., what are the hours like, especially in terms of predictability? What would typical exit options be for a junior/midlevel/senior associate?

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 02, 2017 9:08 am

Current DPW lit associate checking in to help answer questions.

canoe

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby canoe » Tue May 02, 2017 9:56 am

q for dpw lit associates:

i've heard of the revolving door between dpw and sdny usao but what are some other common fedgov exit options dpw associates go into?

how long is the severance pay when you get laid off from dpw?

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 02, 2017 10:09 am

canoe wrote:q for dpw lit associates:

i've heard of the revolving door between dpw and sdny usao but what are some other common fedgov exit options dpw associates go into?

how long is the severance pay when you get laid off from dpw?


Honestly, when people say there is a revolving door, the numbers are better than at a lot of firms but it's still not that common. SDNY takes very few people in a given year and the competition is fierce. I didn't actually see anyone leave for SDNY in my year at the firm. I saw departures to several other USAOs, FTC, DOJ + Antitrust, and the NY Solicitor's office.

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 02, 2017 10:29 am

Anonymous User wrote:
canoe wrote:q for dpw lit associates:

i've heard of the revolving door between dpw and sdny usao but what are some other common fedgov exit options dpw associates go into?

how long is the severance pay when you get laid off from dpw?


Honestly, when people say there is a revolving door, the numbers are better than at a lot of firms but it's still not that common. SDNY takes very few people in a given year and the competition is fierce. I didn't actually see anyone leave for SDNY in my year at the firm. I saw departures to several other USAOs, FTC, DOJ + Antitrust, and the NY Solicitor's office.


Current associate here. While I agree that it's highly competitive, I think the numbers are a bit better than you may have experienced in your year. Not sure when that was and whether it was before or after the fed hiring freeze.

As for severance, I don't know of anyone who was laid off so can't speak to that.

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 02, 2017 12:17 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
canoe wrote:q for dpw lit associates:

i've heard of the revolving door between dpw and sdny usao but what are some other common fedgov exit options dpw associates go into?

how long is the severance pay when you get laid off from dpw?


Honestly, when people say there is a revolving door, the numbers are better than at a lot of firms but it's still not that common. SDNY takes very few people in a given year and the competition is fierce. I didn't actually see anyone leave for SDNY in my year at the firm. I saw departures to several other USAOs, FTC, DOJ + Antitrust, and the NY Solicitor's office.


Current associate here. While I agree that it's highly competitive, I think the numbers are a bit better than you may have experienced in your year. Not sure when that was and whether it was before or after the fed hiring freeze.

As for severance, I don't know of anyone who was laid off so can't speak to that.


Would you guys say that DPW is the best possible biglaw option for anyone who has the USAO office in their sights? Does the EDNY also take people from DPW "often"?

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quiver

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby quiver » Tue May 02, 2017 1:11 pm

From upthread:

Anonymous User wrote:
quiver wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:If you're coming of a D.Ct./CoA clerkship combo, does it make any sense to come litigate at DPW if your goal is SDNY AUSA?

Or is it better to go to one of Wachtell/Patterson/Susman?

I would say DPW (or the large peers like PW) for SDNY or EDNY. The investigation experience that you'll get is viewed favorably and there's a reputation for placing in those offices. It's also really helpful to have former SDNY partners vouching for you if you are shooting for SDNY. I'm not really sure how much Wachtell or Patterson do in the investigation sphere or what their reputation is for placing in that office. Susman is another beast, and your main selling point to the USAOs would be your substantive litigation experience. I actually met someone who had worked for Susman before transitioning to SDNY, but I'm not sure how easy it would be.

That being said, you should also consider whether investigations are your cup of tea, and if not, that might be a reason to go with one of those other firms. But DPW, PW and the rest all have a huge variety of work so you can try to mix up commercial lit and investigations rather than going all or nothing.

In terms of biglaw, Wachtell is the top option if you're aiming for SDNY/EDNY based on recent hiring trends. (Although this could change in the new administration.) DPW and PW are also very good options given the amount of former AUSAs there. Also consider white collar lit boutiques; their partners are mainly former AUSAs as well and they tend to give more substantive experience than just run-of-the-mill investigations.

Yes, forgot to add that white collar boutiques like Lankler, Morvillo, etc. are good alternatives.

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:53 pm

Necro'ing this thread for a quick question.

I know one of the earlier Lit associates said he was bill around 250 a month.. is that really the case? Do Lit associates normally bill around 3000 a year?

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 13, 2017 7:58 pm

I'm a summer at DPW. Is it normal not to get much feedback? I've done a lot of junior/rotator level stuff on a few deals, but no ones really given me any substantive feedback. Everyone is super thankful to the point of absurdity whenever I turn something in, but rarely tells me if I did a good job or not. Are they just too busy? Or am I gonna get boned in my mid-summer review?

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 13, 2017 8:06 pm

Is there a face time requirement for associates?

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 13, 2017 8:37 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Necro'ing this thread for a quick question.

I know one of the earlier Lit associates said he was bill around 250 a month.. is that really the case? Do Lit associates normally bill around 3000 a year?


I work at a peer lit firm and am not surprised if he or she is billing that, but would be shocked if that is anything close to typical. It certainly isn't in my experience.

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 13, 2017 8:45 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm a summer at DPW. Is it normal not to get much feedback? I've done a lot of junior/rotator level stuff on a few deals, but no ones really given me any substantive feedback. Everyone is super thankful to the point of absurdity whenever I turn something in, but rarely tells me if I did a good job or not. Are they just too busy? Or am I gonna get boned in my mid-summer review?


I was a summer there last year. This is completely normal. Summers try to get experience, but the reality is it takes you a while to be qualified to do any real work, and by that time the summer is over. The mid-summer review is pretty chill; through the summer, be at places on time, be responsive, competent, mature, polite, and you'll be fine. Very low bar to meet to get the offer at the end of the summer, and some great events/activities (Hamilton!)

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Re: DPW Associates Taking Q's

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 13, 2017 9:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm a summer at DPW. Is it normal not to get much feedback? I've done a lot of junior/rotator level stuff on a few deals, but no ones really given me any substantive feedback. Everyone is super thankful to the point of absurdity whenever I turn something in, but rarely tells me if I did a good job or not. Are they just too busy? Or am I gonna get boned in my mid-summer review?


I was a summer there last year. This is completely normal. Summers try to get experience, but the reality is it takes you a while to be qualified to do any real work, and by that time the summer is over. The mid-summer review is pretty chill; through the summer, be at places on time, be responsive, competent, mature, polite, and you'll be fine. Very low bar to meet to get the offer at the end of the summer, and some great events/activities (Hamilton!)


No Hamilton this year



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