LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

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dixiecup

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby dixiecup » Fri Jul 20, 2018 11:07 am

BlackAndOrange84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I don't know. It's just gross to hear a former AUSA tell clients he can get them a better result, because he knows the people in the AUSA office. If you've been practicing, you've heard that line.


This is a poor take. There's empirical research out there that the revolving door pushes people in government, including AUSA offices to work harder to take scalps. See: https://scholarship.law.ufl.edu/cgi/vie ... facultypub for a summary of the recent empirical research.

Here's the summary of recent empirical research:

A closer examination of the empirical evidence on the capture effect of the revolving door, however, reveals that the capture narrative has been built largely on presumptions. A growing body of empirical literature either finds no conclusive evidence that the revolving door leads to capture, or finds exactly the opposite evidence.14 For instance, a recent study finds that SEC lawyers are more, not less, aggressive in their enforcement efforts when they subsequently leave the SEC to join law firms specializing in defending clients charged by the SEC.


Thanks for the paper. Its thesis makes sense. Moving from AUSA->private sector partner is competitive so government attorneys work hard to distinguish themselves. I cringe when I hear the "I know people at xyz government office" line, but maybe it's harmless

annon1234

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby annon1234 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 11:21 am

Anonymous User wrote:Can anyone confirm Quinn ACTUALLY does "plaintiff-work"? ... Aside from their one time swing where they decided to sue the big banks instead of represent them after the housing collapse on contingency, and their occasional securities litigation Plaintiff side, does anyone have any examples of Quinn doing plaintiff work? Would love insight from someone who personally knows or has encountered Quinn on the plaintiff side.

All their reported plaintiff's work I've seen has been representing hedge funds, or stockholders as plaintiffs suing other wealthy individuals. Not true Plaintiff's work IMO.


what is "true plaintiff's work" lol. repping shareholders in securities class actions might be the most lucrative form of it

BlackAndOrange84

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby BlackAndOrange84 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 11:23 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Thanks for the paper. Its thesis makes sense. Moving from AUSA->private sector partner is competitive so government attorneys work hard to distinguish themselves. I cringe when I hear the "I know people at xyz government office" line, but maybe it's harmless


No problem. It's a common concern. To be fair, I'm pretty sure there's research out there that former regulators now in private practice are more effective advocates on average than those who aren't, but I don't think that's for corrupt reasons. "I know people" doesn't mean "and my clients get special treatment because they know me." I think it's more "I know how they think, what they're concerned about, the arguments they'll respond to, how to cut a deal that satisfies them without selling the farm, and I have built-in credibility with them." That kind of knowledge and credibility are the things lawyers in any field work for years to cultivate.

What concerns me more is another article I've seen suggesting that because of financial incentives they have, regulators will tend to create novel enforcement theories and new regulations to increase the market demand for their services on the other side of the revolving door—demand they'll be in perfect position to exploit since they helped develop the theory or regulation. It's a perfect shit storm for anybody concerned with the growth of the administrative state.

dixiecup

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby dixiecup » Fri Jul 20, 2018 2:54 pm

I just read this hilarious story about Latham's former MP.

[Edit: Deleted copyrighted material to be safe]

http://www.abajournal.com/news/article/ ... the_ouste/

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby araceli » Fri Jul 20, 2018 5:41 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Does Quinn let you bank all unused vacation days so you can use them in the future, or receive compensation if you leave without using them? One firm whose name I forget gives unlimited vacation but doesn't let you roll any of it over.

Getting back to the O'Melveny blog, read this:

Still, it's unfortunate that the legal system is so broken that people should rather complain on social media. Take as an example Ms. Ashley Matthau. She had faith in the system and got a lawyer after being sexually assaulted. Then she found herself in a meeting with her lawyer, her assaulter, and the assaulter's lawyer O'Melveny -- where she was reportedly humiliated by O'Melveny's threat to drag her by her hair if she did not comply. The majesty of the law. One can imagine how emboldened Mr. Weinstein became watching this, seeing the woman he assaulted degraded like this. Who knows how many of Mr. Weinstein's later acts this spurred; how many of those assaults would have been prevented if -- instead of relying on the legal system -- Ms. Matthau complained on Twitter.
http://brian-boyle-omelveny-torture-att ... ow-to.html

This is creepy sh*t. Biglaw is tough, but if O'Melveny is pressuring Associates to give high Vault scores, scaring sexual assault victims and doing the other stuff in that blog then it's a particularly frightening place to work. O'Melveny threatened to sue the author of the blog in early June, but he posted their threat and claimed everything he wrote is true, and there is no lawsuit yet.


.

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unicorntamer666

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby unicorntamer666 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 5:48 pm

BlackAndOrange84 wrote:There's empirical research out there that the revolving door pushes people in government, including AUSA offices to work harder to take scalps.


Counterpoint: Eric "too big to jail" Holder.

No amount of empirical research will convince me that AGs and AUSAs who are lifelong defenders of corporate criminals will, during their brief sojourns in public office, suddenly become eager to imprison the individuals who constitute their past and future client base. Hence the extraction of penalties from innocent shareholders by a DOJ that remains utterly unwilling to do the one thing that would actually deter: going after the individuals responsible for the wrongdoing (the decision-making executives).

Also: I personally know a lot of people who plan to be AUSAs. Literally zero of them even pretend to care about stopping corporate crime - 100% of them are in it for the payday.

The only solution I can see, short of anti-revolving door legislation, is to pay prosecutors way more than they currently make.

BlackAndOrange84

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby BlackAndOrange84 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 5:59 pm

LOL, brave anon. Stick your head in the sand if you prefer. Not gonna engage.

Anonymous User wrote:
BlackAndOrange84 wrote:There's empirical research out there that the revolving door pushes people in government, including AUSA offices to work harder to take scalps.


Counterpoint: Eric "too big to jail" Holder.

No amount of empirical research will convince me that AGs and AUSAs who are lifelong defenders of corporate criminals will, during their brief sojourns in public office, suddenly become eager to imprison the individuals who constitute their past and future client base. Hence the extraction of penalties from innocent shareholders by a DOJ that remains utterly unwilling to do the one thing that would actually deter: going after the individuals responsible for the wrongdoing (the decision-making executives).

Also: I personally know a lot of people who plan to be AUSAs. Literally zero of them even pretend to care about stopping corporate crime - 100% of them are in it for the payday.

The only solution I can see, short of anti-revolving door legislation, is to pay prosecutors way more than they currently make.

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UnicornHunter

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby UnicornHunter » Sun Jul 22, 2018 8:41 am

BlackAndOrange84 wrote:LOL, brave anon. Stick your head in the sand if you prefer. Not gonna engage.

Anonymous User wrote:
BlackAndOrange84 wrote:There's empirical research out there that the revolving door pushes people in government, including AUSA offices to work harder to take scalps.


Counterpoint: Eric "too big to jail" Holder.

No amount of empirical research will convince me that AGs and AUSAs who are lifelong defenders of corporate criminals will, during their brief sojourns in public office, suddenly become eager to imprison the individuals who constitute their past and future client base. Hence the extraction of penalties from innocent shareholders by a DOJ that remains utterly unwilling to do the one thing that would actually deter: going after the individuals responsible for the wrongdoing (the decision-making executives).

Also: I personally know a lot of people who plan to be AUSAs. Literally zero of them even pretend to care about stopping corporate crime - 100% of them are in it for the payday.

The only solution I can see, short of anti-revolving door legislation, is to pay prosecutors way more than they currently make.


I can tell you there's very few AUSAs out there who would go easy on corporate criminals just to secure a future job. Any argument to the contrary is weak. You can only make your mark as an AUSA if you're REALLY good at what you do. And AUSAs who take it easy on corporate defendants are seen as weak and ineffective. While the Chickenshit Club tries to make the argument you're suggesting, it just doesn't hold any water. Moreover, former AUSAs need not go back to a firm in order to make bank. AUSAs are routinely placing in corporations in high level positions that pay equal or more than they'd get in a firm. For your argument to hold water:

A particular AUSA must be targeting a particular firm which has a case before him or her AND in order to appease the firm, the AUSA goes easy on the client. Then after all that, the firm is like "Welcome aboard!" LOL what? Usually AUSAs just go back to a firm they already have a relationship with OR a firm hires an AUSA because they have relevant experience and a reputation as an effective prosecutor. I can't see a firm wanting to hire a shitty prosecutor.

To the extent you're talking about political appointees, then I guess your theory might hold more water, but then again . . . those aren't line AUSAs; they're politicians.

EDIT: Also, i may be responding to the wrong person here...but i'm too lazy to copy and paste, so please don't hold it against me.

timbs4339

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby timbs4339 » Sun Jul 22, 2018 9:31 am

BlackAndOrange84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Can anyone confirm Quinn ACTUALLY does "plaintiff-work"? ... Aside from their one time swing where they decided to sue the big banks instead of represent them after the housing collapse on contingency, and their occasional securities litigation Plaintiff side, does anyone have any examples of Quinn doing plaintiff work? Would love insight from someone who personally knows or has encountered Quinn on the plaintiff side.

All their reported plaintiff's work I've seen has been representing hedge funds, or stockholders as plaintiffs suing other wealthy individuals. Not true Plaintiff's work IMO.


As far as I can tell you're right that Quinn doesn't do big plaintiff's-side class action work—that's pretty limited to a particular universe of smaller firms that specialize in that work + Susman. The general idea that they only do plaintiff's work insofar as they as aren't conflicted out of plaintiff's side work in big financial, antitrust, and commercial litigation because they have no transactional practice to generate conflicts.

Actually, after looking into a bit more, see recent representations: https://www.quinnemanuel.com/practice-a ... itigation/, it looks like they do some consumer class-action work.


This is generally right - I’ve seen them on some class action stuff but their real specialty is representing institutional plaintiffs in bankruptcy, commercial or IP disputes, which they can do because of conflicts and because of the need not to shield other practice areas from the reputational risk of being adverse to powerful clients in a particular industry.

BlackAndOrange84

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby BlackAndOrange84 » Sun Jul 22, 2018 3:28 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
I can tell you there's very few AUSAs out there who would go easy on corporate criminals just to secure a future job. Any argument to the contrary is weak. You can only make your mark as an AUSA if you're REALLY good at what you do. And AUSAs who take it easy on corporate defendants are seen as weak and ineffective. While the Chickenshit Club tries to make the argument you're suggesting, it just doesn't hold any water. Moreover, former AUSAs need not go back to a firm in order to make bank. AUSAs are routinely placing in corporations in high level positions that pay equal or more than they'd get in a firm. For your argument to hold water:

A particular AUSA must be targeting a particular firm which has a case before him or her AND in order to appease the firm, the AUSA goes easy on the client. Then after all that, the firm is like "Welcome aboard!" LOL what? Usually AUSAs just go back to a firm they already have a relationship with OR a firm hires an AUSA because they have relevant experience and a reputation as an effective prosecutor. I can't see a firm wanting to hire a shitty prosecutor.

To the extent you're talking about political appointees, then I guess your theory might hold more water, but then again . . . those aren't line AUSAs; they're politicians.

EDIT: Also, i may be responding to the wrong person here...but i'm too lazy to copy and paste, so please don't hold it against me.


Yup—this is exactly what the empirical evidence shows.

dixiecup

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby dixiecup » Mon Jul 23, 2018 1:32 pm

I don't worry about a lack of ethics from people like those above, who are aware of the issue and debate it.

The point earlier about how AUSAs won't put executives into prison, because they don't want to be shunned by corporate America, is an interesting one. Also, keep in mind there are two types of lawyers who go government -> biglaw. The first is someone who proved themselves in government and is now rewarded with a biglaw junior partner position. The other is someone who used to be a partner, who went to government, and returned to biglaw. Might have to do different analysis for these two.

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 24, 2018 1:30 pm

posting anon for obvious reasons:

1. the concern with AUSAs pushing hard on novel/crazy theories just to give themselves notoriety and work in their future careers is a legit concern, and is happening to me to a tee in my current inhouse role. doubt it always happens, but it is in this case.

2. I used to work at Quinn, including on plaintiff stuff. They don't do "little guy" consumer class actions for the plaintiff. Their plaintiff work nowadays is largely either antitrust stuff (where they sue on behalf of institutional investors) or the remnants of that RMBS housing stuff that happened a few years back. some of the California offices also do plaintiff-side IP cases (like patent infringement, theft of trade secrets). I think in DC they may do a tiny bit of qui tam relator representation. I'm not aware of them taking the plaintiff side in any product liability cases, but would note that now that Cheffo/Birnbaum/Gay are gone, I expect the entire product liability workload at Quinn to be a smaller. they also do, as someone mentioned here, random rich guy wanting to sue a former business partner stuff -- that's probably common in LA.

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby badlefthook » Tue Jul 24, 2018 6:44 pm

Great thread. Very informative. Can anybody offer any information on Jones Day LA? Haven't seen them mentioned at all.

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby Int'lshoe » Tue Jul 24, 2018 7:28 pm

LA Big law litigation for associates is mostly a discovery grind. If you want actual hands-on experience early in your career, none of the firms that have been mentioned here will provide those opportunities. The money is great and the hours are less than NY, but you are essentially a glorified discovery and law/motion churner. There are exceptions based on particular partners/practice groups at these firms, but it is not the general rule. If you truly want hands-on work early, you need to go someplace smaller or directly into government.

That being said, Quinn is likely to be the place where you will get your earliest opportunity at substantive work. They still cling to the motto that all of their lawyers are "trial lawyers" and from my experience working at the courts, some of the Quinn juniors get to do more hands on work than just stand there when motions are argued. You didn't mention it, but Sullivan & Cromwell's office used to let their juniors argue some motions before my judge. Can't speak about the culture there, but most LA litigation firms are cutthroat and competitive -- just the nature of litigation and the personalities it attracts.

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby hlsperson1111 » Tue Jul 24, 2018 7:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:posting anon for obvious reasons:

1. the concern with AUSAs pushing hard on novel/crazy theories just to give themselves notoriety and work in their future careers is a legit concern, and is happening to me to a tee in my current inhouse role. doubt it always happens, but it is in this case.

2. I used to work at Quinn, including on plaintiff stuff. They don't do "little guy" consumer class actions for the plaintiff. Their plaintiff work nowadays is largely either antitrust stuff (where they sue on behalf of institutional investors) or the remnants of that RMBS housing stuff that happened a few years back. some of the California offices also do plaintiff-side IP cases (like patent infringement, theft of trade secrets). I think in DC they may do a tiny bit of qui tam relator representation. I'm not aware of them taking the plaintiff side in any product liability cases, but would note that now that Cheffo/Birnbaum/Gay are gone, I expect the entire product liability workload at Quinn to be a smaller. they also do, as someone mentioned here, random rich guy wanting to sue a former business partner stuff -- that's probably common in LA.


I think the broader point here is that big firms rarely do what is typically viewed as "plaintiff's work" - for instance, personal injury, consumer fraud, and civil rights cases. Some big firms will represent plaintiffs in the following sorts of cases, while others will not:

-Securities or antitrust class actions (typically on behalf of institutional investors)
-RMBS cases, again typically on behalf of institutional investors
-IP and IP-adjacent cases (patent infringement, copyright infringement, trademark infringement, theft of trade secrets)
-Professional malpractice (typically against law firms or accounting firms)
-Qui tam False Claims Act cases
-Rich guy v. other rich guy cases

Most big firms will represent plaintiffs in big company v. big company business disputes, but I don't think that's what anyone means by "Plaintiffs' work." In my experience, Quinn, McKool Smith, and Kasowitz are the three big-ish firms that I can recall doing a lot of these cases. Susman Godfrey (and similar high-end boutiques) also do plenty of them. There may be others.

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Re: LA Litigation Market/Best Trial Firms (Latham, GDC, Kirkland?)

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 24, 2018 7:53 pm

UnicornHunter wrote:
BlackAndOrange84 wrote:LOL, brave anon. Stick your head in the sand if you prefer. Not gonna engage.

Anonymous User wrote:
BlackAndOrange84 wrote:There's empirical research out there that the revolving door pushes people in government, including AUSA offices to work harder to take scalps.


Counterpoint: Eric "too big to jail" Holder.

No amount of empirical research will convince me that AGs and AUSAs who are lifelong defenders of corporate criminals will, during their brief sojourns in public office, suddenly become eager to imprison the individuals who constitute their past and future client base. Hence the extraction of penalties from innocent shareholders by a DOJ that remains utterly unwilling to do the one thing that would actually deter: going after the individuals responsible for the wrongdoing (the decision-making executives).

Also: I personally know a lot of people who plan to be AUSAs. Literally zero of them even pretend to care about stopping corporate crime - 100% of them are in it for the payday.

The only solution I can see, short of anti-revolving door legislation, is to pay prosecutors way more than they currently make.


I can tell you there's very few AUSAs out there who would go easy on corporate criminals just to secure a future job. Any argument to the contrary is weak. You can only make your mark as an AUSA if you're REALLY good at what you do. And AUSAs who take it easy on corporate defendants are seen as weak and ineffective. While the Chickenshit Club tries to make the argument you're suggesting, it just doesn't hold any water. Moreover, former AUSAs need not go back to a firm in order to make bank. AUSAs are routinely placing in corporations in high level positions that pay equal or more than they'd get in a firm. For your argument to hold water:

A particular AUSA must be targeting a particular firm which has a case before him or her AND in order to appease the firm, the AUSA goes easy on the client. Then after all that, the firm is like "Welcome aboard!" LOL what? Usually AUSAs just go back to a firm they already have a relationship with OR a firm hires an AUSA because they have relevant experience and a reputation as an effective prosecutor. I can't see a firm wanting to hire a shitty prosecutor.

To the extent you're talking about political appointees, then I guess your theory might hold more water, but then again . . . those aren't line AUSAs; they're politicians.

EDIT: Also, i may be responding to the wrong person here...but i'm too lazy to copy and paste, so please don't hold it against me.


Yeah, this is silly. I am an AUSA and was previously in another big fed agency and I can tell you that if anything, its the opposite. The AUSAs who are here with the intention to go back to a firm are way more aggressive than the "lifers." As a big fed litigator, your ability to lateral back to a big firm as an equity parnter is largely about building a name for yourself. Building a name for yourself is pretty a function of securing shocking penalties and sentences which get you noticed by your superiors and the public.



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