Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 03, 2017 7:02 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Definitely didn't mean to imply that MTO is in danger of imminent implosion haha. Sorry if I gave that impression. Just wanted to say that the reputation of the firm is much less rosy in the LA area as far as niceness/satisfaction. Though again, no one doubts they are great litigators. (Though they were phenomenally dickish in front of my judge on more than one occasion.)

No worries- the "100% positive", "very, very different things", and "near future" made it seem like something pressing and serious. Hell, I'm not even gonna be in the office as an SA for roughly 9 months. But definitely recognize that working life has more sharp elbows- I was more speaking to the callback experience relative to the other firms, which is obviously as Smokey mentioned several degrees removed from everyday life.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 03, 2017 10:12 pm

SmokeytheBear wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Definitely didn't mean to imply that MTO is in danger of imminent implosion haha. Sorry if I gave that impression. Just wanted to say that the reputation of the firm is much less rosy in the LA area as far as niceness/satisfaction. Though again, no one doubts they are great litigators. (Though they were phenomenally dickish in front of my judge on more than one occasion.)


I don't think that's universal. I know several people who are there who I went to law school with and they are all happy and have been happy with their experience.


Same here. I know quite a few ppl at MTO, all of them are incredibly friendly and none had anything but positive things to say about their experience. I won't say the original anon is lying, but he or she is drawing rather broad conclusions from what must be limited anecdotes. I don't know of any firm with a better rep in LA

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 03, 2017 11:07 pm

Jr. associate at top-10 firm in O.C. (providing vault range would be giveaway) -- how hard to lateral to LA? Inter-office transfers are fairly hard in my shop (pleasant place to work, overall, though).

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:30 am

Anonymous User wrote:No one disputes the substantiveness of the legal work. The issue is with the agreeableness of the people and the general work environment. Several clerks on my court came from MTO and then decided not to head back.


Did they summer and decide not to come back, or gap year and decide not to come back?

Anonymous User wrote:he or she is drawing rather broad conclusions from what must be limited anecdotes


That's my take here too as a current MTO associate. I think there are legit reasons to not come here. Secondhand niceness impressions aren't among them.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:31 am

Worked for a year and then didn't come back. Look there's obviously good and bad people at every firm, but I've heard enough from people now that I no longer think MTO is better than average in that regard.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby SmokeytheBear » Wed Oct 04, 2017 3:12 am

Anonymous User wrote:Jr. associate at top-10 firm in O.C. (providing vault range would be giveaway) -- how hard to lateral to LA? Inter-office transfers are fairly hard in my shop (pleasant place to work, overall, though).


PM me.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby lolwat » Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:07 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Jr. associate at top-10 firm in O.C. (providing vault range would be giveaway) -- how hard to lateral to LA? Inter-office transfers are fairly hard in my shop (pleasant place to work, overall, though).


Smokey probably has a better idea especially if you're in corp. It doesn't seem that difficult in lit as I've seen a lot of people go to LA firms. It might help if you start networking with LA peeps though.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby SmokeytheBear » Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:12 pm

lolwat wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Jr. associate at top-10 firm in O.C. (providing vault range would be giveaway) -- how hard to lateral to LA? Inter-office transfers are fairly hard in my shop (pleasant place to work, overall, though).


Smokey probably has a better idea especially if you're in corp. It doesn't seem that difficult in lit as I've seen a lot of people go to LA firms. It might help if you start networking with LA peeps though.


Yup. As I said, PM me. But it's super hard to lateral as a junior (become more possible as a second year and starts to be common as a third year; I've only heard of/known one first year lateral).

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:45 pm

Anyone know anything about Jenner corp?

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:29 pm

Can someone tell me why Cooley LA has had an opening for a junior/mid-level corporate associate on and off for the last year? Is this just an attrition issue because the firm does so well placing in house, or is this a Paul Hastings issue, where everyone jumps ship as fast as possible because it's a nightmare.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:46 pm

RE: The post above, someone mind explaining what's the deal with Paul Hastings LA?

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby KM2016 » Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:02 pm

Anonymous User wrote:RE: The post above, someone mind explaining what's the deal with Paul Hastings LA?


Paul Hastings = dumpster fire in terms of financials, morale, associate satisfaction, attrition, etc.

This has been discussed AT LENGTH both here and in many other threads.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby SmokeytheBear » Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:07 pm

KM2016 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:RE: The post above, someone mind explaining what's the deal with Paul Hastings LA?


Paul Hastings = dumpster fire in terms of financials, morale, associate satisfaction, attrition, etc.

This has been discussed AT LENGTH both here and in many other threads.


Used tire dumpster fire from what people have said.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 05, 2017 1:31 pm

anyone know anything about either of the two big appellate shops (H&L, GMSR)?

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 06, 2017 12:39 pm

Thanks for this thread--it's very helpful.

I'm considering lateraling from NY and have a few questions for LA associates: What are your thoughts on the chambers' band rankings for CA? It seems like they differ a little from what has been discussed here. In terms of M&A, chambers ranked MTO in band 2 and GDC in band 1 (and there is a lot of MTO love here). Is MTO dinged in M&A because of their smaller size? Or do they primarily work on berkshire deals (or focus on lit/other practices) leading to a narrower M&A practice? I'm curious how often you see MTO on non-berkshire deals (whether as an MTO associate or across the table) and whether the prestige from TLS is due to recruiting practices/selectiveness or complexity of work/industry reputation.

Somewhat relatedly, has anyone heard of any other LA band 1 M&A firms not have enough corp work for associates? I was surprised that GDC nudged corp associates to regulatory/lit work. Has anyone heard of this happening at other band 1 pe firms (k&e/stb) or other top pe firms in ca?

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby SmokeytheBear » Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:03 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for this thread--it's very helpful.

I'm considering lateraling from NY and have a few questions for LA associates: What are your thoughts on the chambers' band rankings for CA? It seems like they differ a little from what has been discussed here. In terms of M&A, chambers ranked MTO in band 2 and GDC in band 1 (and there is a lot of MTO love here). Is MTO dinged in M&A because of their smaller size? Or do they primarily work on berkshire deals (or focus on lit/other practices) leading to a narrower M&A practice? I'm curious how often you see MTO on non-berkshire deals (whether as an MTO associate or across the table) and whether the prestige from TLS is due to recruiting practices/selectiveness or complexity of work/industry reputation.

Somewhat relatedly, has anyone heard of any other LA band 1 M&A firms not have enough corp work for associates? I was surprised that GDC nudged corp associates to regulatory/lit work. Has anyone heard of this happening at other band 1 pe firms (k&e/stb) or other top pe firms in ca?


Happy to help. All very good questions.

1. As a first matter--and as I have extolled on this thread and on these forums--I think if you're going to do corporate work in one of the major markets, you cannot beat LA. You still get access to the sexy deals but with the benefit that most firms here don't grind you like in Bay/NY/Chi.

2. I think the Chamber rankings are more useful than the Vault rankings, but they still hide some nuances. If you look at their methodology for ranking, it's just as much as blackbox as anything else--reputation and an analysis of the deals they've done. But what about those deals--is it pure consideration, complexity, volume? Very unclear. I think it depends on what kind of work you want to do. If you want to do pure M&A, think of someplace like Kirkland, which does a shit ton of middle market M&A both buy side and sell side for their PE clients, or Sheppard Mullin, which also does a shit ton of pure sell side M&A. The rankings tel you that GDC is band 1 and Sheppard is band 4, but aside from prestige, what makes those differences isn't clear. If I wanted to do pure M&A work and a lot of it, I probably wouldn't eye someplace like GDC.

Other places in town do M&A, but associates will do a blend of capital markets or finance to balance out their time. S&C LA has done awesome M&A for Amazon (including the whole foods deal), Skadden has M&A work (the Dermalogica deal), Milbank does some too (lots of gaming deals, including the UFC deal), but I don't know any associates at any of those firms that do only M&A, whereas I know associates at Kirkland and Sheppard who did only M&A.

3. I'm not sure the slate of deals that MTO handles, but it certainly is a lot of Berkshire stuff. You could also look at Law360, Pitchbook or the league tables to see what else they do. I think the prestige comes from Berkshire as their client, but also from how they manage the firm. They staff their deals lean, but as I have said before, every firm proclaims that they staff their deals lean. I have either worked for or worked against teams from OMM LA, Pillsbury LA, PH LA, Kirkland LA, Sheppard LA, Milbank LA, Latham LA, S&C LA and countless other non-LA firms and the only firm I saw throw needless bodies at a deal was Kirkland Chicago and New York (it was obnoxious how many people they had on this middle market deal and I told them as much).

4. Aside from hearing first hand about it at GDC (and aside from having first years do a basket of stuff, which I feel like is normal), I haven't heard of it elsewhere. That also might have been a product of the slowdown post 2008.

These are just my thoughts based on deals I have done and firms I have worked for or against. I tend to think most of the rankings are shit, as they belie important nuances, so my opinions above will probably be greeted with welcome criticism. But I've been in this business in this town long enough to have a valid opinion.

Feel free to PM me and we can talk on the phone about it more if you'd like.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Oct 07, 2017 12:01 am

Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for this thread--it's very helpful.

I'm considering lateraling from NY and have a few questions for LA associates: What are your thoughts on the chambers' band rankings for CA? It seems like they differ a little from what has been discussed here. In terms of M&A, chambers ranked MTO in band 2 and GDC in band 1 (and there is a lot of MTO love here). Is MTO dinged in M&A because of their smaller size? Or do they primarily work on berkshire deals (or focus on lit/other practices) leading to a narrower M&A practice? I'm curious how often you see MTO on non-berkshire deals (whether as an MTO associate or across the table) and whether the prestige from TLS is due to recruiting practices/selectiveness or complexity of work/industry reputation.

Somewhat relatedly, has anyone heard of any other LA band 1 M&A firms not have enough corp work for associates? I was surprised that GDC nudged corp associates to regulatory/lit work. Has anyone heard of this happening at other band 1 pe firms (k&e/stb) or other top pe firms in ca?


MTO's prestige and draw is in its litigation practice. Although it has good corporate practices, those have never been its main selling point. I'm actually surprised to see it's as high as band 2 in M&A.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 10, 2017 1:05 pm

New to LA. Very useful thread—many thanks to those who’ve contributed. Practiced in another state for 2-3 years (transactional) at a 35-attorney, regional firm. Graduated top half at a top 25 law school. I’ve been applying to open positions and mass mailing big/midsize firms in LA and OC. Want big/midlaw or a well-regarded small firm. Plan to keep mass mailing and follow up once I get CA bar results in Nov (fingers crossed). Looking for advice on using a recruiter. Should I use one? Should I wait until I get bar results? Recommendations on reputable recruiters in this area? Thanks!

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby SmokeytheBear » Tue Oct 10, 2017 1:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:New to LA. Very useful thread—many thanks to those who’ve contributed. Practiced in another state for 2-3 years (transactional) at a 35-attorney, regional firm. Graduated top half at a top 25 law school. I’ve been applying to open positions and mass mailing big/midsize firms in LA and OC. Want big/midlaw or a well-regarded small firm. Plan to keep mass mailing and follow up once I get CA bar results in Nov (fingers crossed). Looking for advice on using a recruiter. Should I use one? Should I wait until I get bar results? Recommendations on reputable recruiters in this area? Thanks!


What kind of transactional did you practice?

Very few reasons not to use a recruiter. My guess is that they will slow play you until you have your bar results. But since you're coming from a law school that is presumably not in this market and with not top grades, they'll help get your resume and pitch straight.

Do you have any ties to LA?

I would recommend
- Priya Gulati at Pacific Legal Search. (408) 666-7314 priya@paclegalsearch.com
- Andrea Hartwell at SWAN LEGAL SEARCH (415) 730-8033 andrea@swanlegal.com

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 10, 2017 3:37 pm

SmokeytheBear wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:New to LA. Very useful thread—many thanks to those who’ve contributed. Practiced in another state for 2-3 years (transactional) at a 35-attorney, regional firm. Graduated top half at a top 25 law school. I’ve been applying to open positions and mass mailing big/midsize firms in LA and OC. Want big/midlaw or a well-regarded small firm. Plan to keep mass mailing and follow up once I get CA bar results in Nov (fingers crossed). Looking for advice on using a recruiter. Should I use one? Should I wait until I get bar results? Recommendations on reputable recruiters in this area? Thanks!


What kind of transactional did you practice?

Very few reasons not to use a recruiter. My guess is that they will slow play you until you have your bar results. But since you're coming from a law school that is presumably not in this market and with not top grades, they'll help get your resume and pitch straight.

Do you have any ties to LA?

I would recommend
- Priya Gulati at Pacific Legal Search. (408) 666-7314 priya@paclegalsearch.com
- Andrea Hartwell at SWAN LEGAL SEARCH (415) 730-8033 andrea@swanlegal.com

Awesome. Thank you. M&A, finance, corporate governance. No ties but here to stay.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby SmokeytheBear » Thu Oct 12, 2017 6:18 pm

Looks like Winston and Strawn in LA is looking for a first year corp associate in their PF group. You need to have taken the July 2017 CA bar or already be admitted. Some experience helpful. Check out their website and if not there PM me for info.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Oct 12, 2017 7:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Anyone know anything about Jenner corp?


Post with a throwaway and I can PM you.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Mr. Sprinkles » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Anyone know anything about Jenner corp?


Post with a throwaway and I can PM you.


Thanks, much appreciated.

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 13, 2017 8:18 am

Corp NYC associate - do LA firms typically require you to have already sat for the CA bar or are they willing to hire you and then have you sit for the bar?

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Re: Los Angeles Market Associates Taking Questions

Postby SmokeytheBear » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:38 am

Anonymous User wrote:Corp NYC associate - do LA firms typically require you to have already sat for the CA bar or are they willing to hire you and then have you sit for the bar?


Nothing typical. I see postings either saying required or not required all the time.




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