Why does everyone dump on Latham?

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 21, 2018 7:55 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Man,

I'm not the OP of this whole thread, but I am another 2L who's going to be summering at Latham, and I've got to say that this thread has gotten me feeling very down. I'm still excited to go to biglaw and I thought Latham would be a good place for me to be, but I never knew Latham was so hated by the TLS crowd. I get that Latham's not the most prestigious firm out there, but I don't think it's a shithole that doesn't even deserve to be in the v100. I may be fooling myself, though. I don't even know anymore.

Ultimately, I get the feeling from TLS that if you're not at K&E or something like that you might as well just quit law and go become a gas station manager. I know that's an obvious exaggeration, but it really does feel that way sometimes.

If it’s any consolation TLS’s love for Kirkland is dumb as hell. As a Chicago associate (different firm) it’s just another firm, with associates who are buried to shit all the time and a good portion of whom burn out and go work for city government after a year or two.

sourbritecrawlers3

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby sourbritecrawlers3 » Fri Sep 21, 2018 8:55 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm a 2L going to Latham next summer in one of the non-NY offices. I've found a lot of friends and people on TLS react very negatively when I tell them this. My question is: what do people have against Latham?

Sure, they fired a lot of first year associates. But that was 10 years ago in one of the worst recessions ever. It's highly unlikely we will ever have a recession like that again in our lifetimes. Also, they got so much backlash that they would never do it again. Latham is actually a safer firm in this way because they will be so self-conscious in the next recession.

The truth is, Latham is excellent. It's a V5 firm and only becoming more prestigious every year. It is also very strong in so many practice areas and has 12 Band 1 rankings nationwide on Chambers and Partners. Latham also has super strong offices in many different regions. Its IP litigation practice in D.C. for example is the best. It also has the best sports law practice in the country in its Century City office.

With all that in mind, why does Latham get so much hate?


OP, where did you hear that Latham has the best sports law practice in the country?

Latham's Century City office does not have the best sports law practice in the country, but rather the best entertainment practice. In terms of sports, most in the industry would consider Latham just below Proskauer and Skadden. That being said, Latham's Century City office is likely the best place to practice sports law as a junior because it has a formal sports & entertainment group that guarantees work in that space from day 1.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Fri Sep 21, 2018 9:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

sourbritecrawlers3

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby sourbritecrawlers3 » Fri Sep 21, 2018 9:03 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm a 2L going to Latham next summer in one of the non-NY offices. I've found a lot of friends and people on TLS react very negatively when I tell them this. My question is: what do people have against Latham?

Sure, they fired a lot of first year associates. But that was 10 years ago in one of the worst recessions ever. It's highly unlikely we will ever have a recession like that again in our lifetimes. Also, they got so much backlash that they would never do it again. Latham is actually a safer firm in this way because they will be so self-conscious in the next recession.

The truth is, Latham is excellent. It's a V5 firm and only becoming more prestigious every year. It is also very strong in so many practice areas and has 12 Band 1 rankings nationwide on Chambers and Partners. Latham also has super strong offices in many different regions. Its IP litigation practice in D.C. for example is the best. It also has the best sports law practice in the country in its Century City office.

With all that in mind, why does Latham get so much hate?


My impression is Latham's non-NY offices are pretty elite and well regarded while their NY office is not. If you're going to a non-NY office, don't let it get to you.

wons

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby wons » Fri Sep 21, 2018 10:02 pm

legalace wrote:
And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good


What is your definition of "really good"? Bear in mind that if you are a litigator, your next job will be in a law firm, not in house.


I’m speaking transactional. Lit is a whole different beast, with big firm practice having evolved over the last 5-10 years to be so unattractive for associates that I think anyone with credentials does Anything But Biglaw.

But for transactional these firms are still where everyone, from ex-SCOTUS (such as there are) to median-at-NYU starts their careers.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby carsondalywashere » Fri Sep 21, 2018 10:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Man,

I'm not the OP of this whole thread, but I am another 2L who's going to be summering at Latham, and I've got to say that this thread has gotten me feeling very down. I'm still excited to go to biglaw and I thought Latham would be a good place for me to be, but I never knew Latham was so hated by the TLS crowd. I get that Latham's not the most prestigious firm out there, but I don't think it's a shithole that doesn't even deserve to be in the v100. I may be fooling myself, though. I don't even know anymore.

Ultimately, I get the feeling from TLS that if you're not at K&E or something like that you might as well just quit law and go become a gas station manager. I know that's an obvious exaggeration, but it really does feel that way sometimes.

If it’s any consolation TLS’s love for Kirkland is dumb as hell. As a Chicago associate (different firm) it’s just another firm, with associates who are buried to shit all the time and a good portion of whom burn out and go work for city government after a year or two.

Lol, people burn out but that's ridic

carsondalywashere

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby carsondalywashere » Fri Sep 21, 2018 10:19 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
nerd1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.


In terms of signaling for elite lawyers, I would agree with that sentiment for Midlevels. For summers and first years, even the most selective firms would admit they're guessing based on a combo of school + one year of grades.


Disclaimer - don't get bent out of shape, this is just for fun on a slow night

Tier 1 (Yale equivalent): Wachtell, W&C
No idea how to account for a Stanford equivalent. Munger? SF Biglaw firms like Orrick and Cooley (though those firms are a lot less prestigious than those listed below)?
Tier 2 (Harvard, CCN) - Cravath, Sullcrom, Skadden, Davis Polk, Simpson, Cleary, Quinn Emanuel (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 3 (UVA, Penn, Michigan, Duke) - Kirkland, Latham, Paul Weiss, Gibson Dunn, Deb (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 4 (Cornell, Northwestern, Cal-Berkeley) - Weil, Sidley, Jones Day, Ropes, White & Case
Tier 5 (Georgetown) - Paul Hastings
Boies would go somewhere, but don't know where

dabigchina

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby dabigchina » Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
nerd1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.


In terms of signaling for elite lawyers, I would agree with that sentiment for Midlevels. For summers and first years, even the most selective firms would admit they're guessing based on a combo of school + one year of grades.


Disclaimer - don't get bent out of shape, this is just for fun on a slow night

Tier 1 (Yale equivalent): Wachtell, W&C
No idea how to account for a Stanford equivalent. Munger? SF Biglaw firms like Orrick and Cooley (though those firms are a lot less prestigious than those listed below)?
Tier 2 (Harvard, CCN) - Cravath, Sullcrom, Skadden, Davis Polk, Simpson, Cleary, Quinn Emanuel (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 3 (UVA, Penn, Michigan, Duke) - Kirkland, Latham, Paul Weiss, Gibson Dunn, Deb (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 4 (Cornell, Northwestern, Cal-Berkeley) - Weil, Sidley, Jones Day, Ropes, White & Case
Tier 5 (Georgetown) - Paul Hastings
Boies would go somewhere, but don't know where

1. I question whether Harvard is on the same tier as CCN. Seems like it should be higher.
2. Seems like Yale should include elite boutiques like Susman, KVN, HH, SG, etc.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby SLS_AMG » Sat Sep 22, 2018 2:17 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
nerd1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.


In terms of signaling for elite lawyers, I would agree with that sentiment for Midlevels. For summers and first years, even the most selective firms would admit they're guessing based on a combo of school + one year of grades.


Disclaimer - don't get bent out of shape, this is just for fun on a slow night

Tier 1 (Yale equivalent): Wachtell, W&C
No idea how to account for a Stanford equivalent. Munger? SF Biglaw firms like Orrick and Cooley (though those firms are a lot less prestigious than those listed below)?
Tier 2 (Harvard, CCN) - Cravath, Sullcrom, Skadden, Davis Polk, Simpson, Cleary, Quinn Emanuel (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 3 (UVA, Penn, Michigan, Duke) - Kirkland, Latham, Paul Weiss, Gibson Dunn, Deb (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 4 (Cornell, Northwestern, Cal-Berkeley) - Weil, Sidley, Jones Day, Ropes, White & Case
Tier 5 (Georgetown) - Paul Hastings
Boies would go somewhere, but don't know where


Why should anyone care about your opinion when you don't even understand the school tiers you're comparing firms to?

Y
H=S
C=C=N
M=V=P=B
D=N
C
G

lol at CCN being on par with Harvard or Duke being above Berkeley.

carsondalywashere

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Posts: 605
Joined: Tue Apr 04, 2017 7:33 pm

Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby carsondalywashere » Sat Sep 22, 2018 4:04 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
nerd1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.


In terms of signaling for elite lawyers, I would agree with that sentiment for Midlevels. For summers and first years, even the most selective firms would admit they're guessing based on a combo of school + one year of grades.


Disclaimer - don't get bent out of shape, this is just for fun on a slow night

Tier 1 (Yale equivalent): Wachtell, W&C
No idea how to account for a Stanford equivalent. Munger? SF Biglaw firms like Orrick and Cooley (though those firms are a lot less prestigious than those listed below)?
Tier 2 (Harvard, CCN) - Cravath, Sullcrom, Skadden, Davis Polk, Simpson, Cleary, Quinn Emanuel (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 3 (UVA, Penn, Michigan, Duke) - Kirkland, Latham, Paul Weiss, Gibson Dunn, Deb (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 4 (Cornell, Northwestern, Cal-Berkeley) - Weil, Sidley, Jones Day, Ropes, White & Case
Tier 5 (Georgetown) - Paul Hastings
Boies would go somewhere, but don't know where


Why should anyone care about your opinion when you don't even understand the school tiers you're comparing firms to?

Y
H=S
C=C=N
M=V=P=B
D=N
C
G

lol at CCN being on par with Harvard or Duke being above Berkeley.

Those are the traditional rankings, but in practice that does not hold up

carsondalywashere

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Posts: 605
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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby carsondalywashere » Sat Sep 22, 2018 4:05 am

dabigchina wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
nerd1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.


In terms of signaling for elite lawyers, I would agree with that sentiment for Midlevels. For summers and first years, even the most selective firms would admit they're guessing based on a combo of school + one year of grades.


Disclaimer - don't get bent out of shape, this is just for fun on a slow night

Tier 1 (Yale equivalent): Wachtell, W&C
No idea how to account for a Stanford equivalent. Munger? SF Biglaw firms like Orrick and Cooley (though those firms are a lot less prestigious than those listed below)?
Tier 2 (Harvard, CCN) - Cravath, Sullcrom, Skadden, Davis Polk, Simpson, Cleary, Quinn Emanuel (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 3 (UVA, Penn, Michigan, Duke) - Kirkland, Latham, Paul Weiss, Gibson Dunn, Deb (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 4 (Cornell, Northwestern, Cal-Berkeley) - Weil, Sidley, Jones Day, Ropes, White & Case
Tier 5 (Georgetown) - Paul Hastings
Boies would go somewhere, but don't know where

1. I question whether Harvard is on the same tier as CCN. Seems like it should be higher.
2. Seems like Yale should include elite boutiques like Susman, KVN, HH, SG, etc.


1. Did you go to Harvard?
2. Those aren't big law firms

2013

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby 2013 » Sat Sep 22, 2018 4:12 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
nerd1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.


In terms of signaling for elite lawyers, I would agree with that sentiment for Midlevels. For summers and first years, even the most selective firms would admit they're guessing based on a combo of school + one year of grades.


Disclaimer - don't get bent out of shape, this is just for fun on a slow night

Tier 1 (Yale equivalent): Wachtell, W&C
No idea how to account for a Stanford equivalent. Munger? SF Biglaw firms like Orrick and Cooley (though those firms are a lot less prestigious than those listed below)?
Tier 2 (Harvard, CCN) - Cravath, Sullcrom, Skadden, Davis Polk, Simpson, Cleary, Quinn Emanuel (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 3 (UVA, Penn, Michigan, Duke) - Kirkland, Latham, Paul Weiss, Gibson Dunn, Deb (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 4 (Cornell, Northwestern, Cal-Berkeley) - Weil, Sidley, Jones Day, Ropes, White & Case
Tier 5 (Georgetown) - Paul Hastings
Boies would go somewhere, but don't know where


Why should anyone care about your opinion when you don't even understand the school tiers you're comparing firms to?

Y
H=S
C=C=N
M=V=P=B
D=N
C
G

lol at CCN being on par with Harvard or Duke being above Berkeley.

Those are the traditional rankings, but in practice that does not hold up


If you’re going by traditional practice (and placement), then it still makes no sense. It should be more

Y

H/S

CCN and Penn

Duke UVA Cornell

Northwestern, Michigan, Berkeley





Georgetown

Cornell places significantly better than its ranking. Berkeley and Michigan don’t place as well in biglaw. And Georgetown is Georgetown.

dabigchina

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Posts: 1429
Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:22 am

Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby dabigchina » Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:12 am

Anonymous User wrote:
dabigchina wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
nerd1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.


In terms of signaling for elite lawyers, I would agree with that sentiment for Midlevels. For summers and first years, even the most selective firms would admit they're guessing based on a combo of school + one year of grades.


Disclaimer - don't get bent out of shape, this is just for fun on a slow night

Tier 1 (Yale equivalent): Wachtell, W&C
No idea how to account for a Stanford equivalent. Munger? SF Biglaw firms like Orrick and Cooley (though those firms are a lot less prestigious than those listed below)?
Tier 2 (Harvard, CCN) - Cravath, Sullcrom, Skadden, Davis Polk, Simpson, Cleary, Quinn Emanuel (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 3 (UVA, Penn, Michigan, Duke) - Kirkland, Latham, Paul Weiss, Gibson Dunn, Deb (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 4 (Cornell, Northwestern, Cal-Berkeley) - Weil, Sidley, Jones Day, Ropes, White & Case
Tier 5 (Georgetown) - Paul Hastings
Boies would go somewhere, but don't know where

1. I question whether Harvard is on the same tier as CCN. Seems like it should be higher.
2. Seems like Yale should include elite boutiques like Susman, KVN, HH, SG, etc.


1. Did you go to Harvard?
2. Those aren't big law firms


1. I went to ccn
2. So what?

sourbritecrawlers3

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby sourbritecrawlers3 » Sat Sep 22, 2018 10:28 am

This thread is getting out of hand. Wut non-NY office r u going to OP?

oblig.lawl.ref

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby oblig.lawl.ref » Sat Sep 22, 2018 2:33 pm

I'm not going to read this whole thread, and it did appear to go off the rails a bit, but I did want to pile on because I think there are a lot of good points being made in here in the service of dunking on what looks like a shameless recruiting department OP:

1. That first post had to be by Latham recruiting which is (a) sad and (b) illustrative of the kind of game firms like Latham and Kirkland are engaged in.

2. Latham is a great firm and a great place to start a career.

3. I do not think it is, by any measure other than maybe full-service-ness and number of locations in the U.S. to not being horrible ratio, a top 5 firm. It is perhaps a top 5 firm by that ratio, though. So I can see why large corporations may want to use it so that they can find mostly competent lawyers doing a wide variety of work in any time zone they want. But I don't think that should be a compelling reason for 2Ls to join. In fact, the largeness of it maybe should count against it for 2Ls.

4. Related to #1 and #3, I'd like to put in a word to drag both K&E and Latham as firms that are interested in aggressive growth, while appearing prestigious, in the U.S. at all costs. They've both been successful in doing so, as evidenced by law students and first year attorneys on this forum, but I don't think that environment is actually conducive career development for junior attorneys. If you do great work, work real hard, and put a lot of thought and effort into finding and selecting the right teams to work for, it can work out well. But it's easy to get lost in firms like these and they really do not care about you, to even a greater extent than others. I think GD&C and O'Melveny are two other firms that are chasing this same game, to a lesser extent.

5. I think a lot of people choose NYC V15, K&E, Latham and GD&C because they have no idea what they actually want to do. Not all people. Those firms do good things in various offices and if you pick them to do specific things in specific offices, you're doing it right. Unless you are interested in a particular firm to do a particular thing in a particular office, you are probably picking firms wrong. Figure out what you may want to do with your life. You should be at least 23 years old. Come on.

iwelf

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby iwelf » Sun Sep 23, 2018 12:52 am

dabigchina wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
nerd1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:The thing is, there’s not this strict hierarchy of firms like 2Ls think there is. Vault creates this hugely misleading impression, much like USNews law school rankings did before they went to “tiers” below the top group.

And Latham is really a fine firm. You last 6 years at Latham, your next job will be really good (and a hell of a lot better than the job of the Cravath guy who lasted 2 years ...)

The reason people crap on Latham, such that they do, is that it’s the one of the best names in the tier of “amorphous giant big law firms with strong transactional practices”, but it’s not the last firm that’s distinctively a bit better than that. To put it in law school terms, it’s like going to BC or Vandy for law school. Those are good law schools! You do well there, you can get hired by damn near any firm! If you act like you’re going to Harvard, people are going to roll their eyes . . .

To some extent, this is a blessing. Law school grades are pretty damn random outside of big chunks (I’m pretty sure a top quarter candidate is better than below median, but I don’t think there’s much value to a 3.4 over a 3.35). So if most law firms are kind of interchangable, and your future success is based more on your success as a practicing lawyer rather than your firm name, thats good and fair. When we get a midlevel candidate from, I dunno, Weil and Sidley, and both have otherwise similar resumes, the firm doesn’t really matter - at best it’s a pinky on the scale for Weil, but no more. Other factors matter so much more.

That being said, for transactional work, it is critical you are at a firm (and an office within the firm) that gets real deal flow for all sorts of transactional work. The big Latham offices check that box for sure.


Going to a big, well-known, prestigious but not super prestigious firm like Latham is more like going to a T14 law school that is not Harvard, Yale or Stanford. You are smart. You are an elite lawyer. But you cannot signal to others that you are one of the smartest or most elite young lawyers in the United States just by working at Latham.


In terms of signaling for elite lawyers, I would agree with that sentiment for Midlevels. For summers and first years, even the most selective firms would admit they're guessing based on a combo of school + one year of grades.


Disclaimer - don't get bent out of shape, this is just for fun on a slow night

Tier 1 (Yale equivalent): Wachtell, W&C
No idea how to account for a Stanford equivalent. Munger? SF Biglaw firms like Orrick and Cooley (though those firms are a lot less prestigious than those listed below)?
Tier 2 (Harvard, CCN) - Cravath, Sullcrom, Skadden, Davis Polk, Simpson, Cleary, Quinn Emanuel (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 3 (UVA, Penn, Michigan, Duke) - Kirkland, Latham, Paul Weiss, Gibson Dunn, Deb (not sure about this one tbh)
Tier 4 (Cornell, Northwestern, Cal-Berkeley) - Weil, Sidley, Jones Day, Ropes, White & Case
Tier 5 (Georgetown) - Paul Hastings
Boies would go somewhere, but don't know where

1. I question whether Harvard is on the same tier as CCN. Seems like it should be higher.
2. Seems like Yale should include elite boutiques like Susman, KVN, HH, SG, etc.


A lot of this would depend on market as well (this particular list, aside from W&C, is very NYC-centric). For example, Sidley/Kirkland would be ranked a lot higher for Chicago. Kirkland > Simpson >>> Skadden in Houston for corp. Cleary and Skadden would be below tier 2 in DC. Gibson would be tier 1 in several cities (LA, Dallas, etc) and tier 2 in DC. Etc. Etc. And it's hard to create a list like this while aggregating lit and corp.

ChangeGoinCome

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby ChangeGoinCome » Sun Sep 23, 2018 2:49 am

LMAO with the firm rankings analogy. Law Students will be law students.

wons

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby wons » Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:40 am

Seriously, guys, you’re missing the point. There are a handful of firms that provide a meaningful resume boost. It’s not the same handful in lit or transactional, but in each case it’s a handful.

And then there’s a big mass - my guess is it’s ~20-30 firms - of basically fungible firms that are generally equivalent. If you work for those firms, other factors (practice group, references, etc) matter so much more than your firm name that working at one versus the other doesn’t provide you any material advantage in either direction.

So there’s no point in ranking firms, other than if you’re still in school. No one gives a shit or actually thinks of firms in that way once you’re out in the real world. And this is coming from someone who’s worked at firms in both “tiers”, and for a long time.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 23, 2018 10:31 am

Why is everyone so high on Cleary? I’m at a lower T-14 and Cleary tosses out tons of offers here. There was definitely plenty of overlap with people interviewing and getting offered there and at firms like Latham/Weil/Kirkland

dabigchina

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby dabigchina » Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:27 am

This thread is like a greatest hits album of all the things that make tls just awful.

HamlinMcgill

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby HamlinMcgill » Mon Sep 24, 2018 1:15 pm

This thread is so dumb. Latham is a very well-respected law firm. Other firms mentioned in this thread are also very well-respected. They pretty much all pay the same and do similar work. Analyzing minute differences in subjective "prestige" is not a great use of time. Making decisions based on the opinions of anonymous people on a law school discussion board is not going to lead to a happier or more fulfilling life.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 25, 2018 9:22 pm

OP here. I'm going to one of the midsize Latham offices (think Boston, Costa Mesa, Houston, Menlo Park, San Diego, or San Francisco).

I'm a little shocked at some of the responses in this thread. I think some of the criticisms of my OP are legitimate but I also feel there is a lot of irrational anti-Latham bias with some of the people here. Some of the people here are probably bitter they didn't get offers from Latham.

First of all, a lot of people here are making straw man arguments saying that I said Latham was the most prestigious firm. I never said that or even claimed to say that.

With that said, it is indisputable that Latham is a V5 firm. This is literally a fact. When you wake up tomorrow morning this fact will still be true and there is nothing you can do about it. Some people seem to be suggesting that Latham is a "fake" V5 firm. What about firms like Davis Polk, which are literally not in the V5? I have never seen anyone call DPW a "fake" V5 firm.

Second of all, I am not a Latham recruiter. The mods here can see who I am - I have been on this site for years and am clearly a 2L law school student. I think it is very telling that some people think that anyone who says anything good about Latham must be a recruiter.

I do think some of the criticism of how Latham handled the recession is legitimate. But to be fair this probably applies more to the New York office.

Finally I think it is funny people seem to be accusing me of putting to much of my self-worth into my firm. I am not the one going around on internet message boards tearing down other peoples' firms. I just think that is a little funny.

2013

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby 2013 » Tue Sep 25, 2018 10:20 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. I'm going to one of the midsize Latham offices (think Boston, Costa Mesa, Houston, Menlo Park, San Diego, or San Francisco).

I'm a little shocked at some of the responses in this thread. I think some of the criticisms of my OP are legitimate but I also feel there is a lot of irrational anti-Latham bias with some of the people here. Some of the people here are probably bitter they didn't get offers from Latham.

First of all, a lot of people here are making straw man arguments saying that I said Latham was the most prestigious firm. I never said that or even claimed to say that.

With that said, it is indisputable that Latham is a V5 firm. This is literally a fact. When you wake up tomorrow morning this fact will still be true and there is nothing you can do about it. Some people seem to be suggesting that Latham is a "fake" V5 firm. What about firms like Davis Polk, which are literally not in the V5? I have never seen anyone call DPW a "fake" V5 firm.

Second of all, I am not a Latham recruiter. The mods here can see who I am - I have been on this site for years and am clearly a 2L law school student. I think it is very telling that some people think that anyone who says anything good about Latham must be a recruiter.

I do think some of the criticism of how Latham handled the recession is legitimate. But to be fair this probably applies more to the New York office.

Finally I think it is funny people seem to be accusing me of putting to much of my self-worth into my firm. I am not the one going around on internet message boards tearing down other peoples' firms. I just think that is a little funny.


What was the point of your OP if you’re just going to try to bat away every criticism of Latham? Clearly you just want to go there or you didn’t get a better offer, which is fine.

Latham is a great firm. But it’s a behemoth that probably will Latham again if the economy tanks. Some of the offices you mentioned “Boston, Costa Mesa, Houston, Menlo Park, San Diego, or San Francisco” are highly leveraged, so those will probably be more susceptible to lathaming.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby iwelf » Tue Sep 25, 2018 10:42 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. I'm going to one of the midsize Latham offices (think Boston, Costa Mesa, Houston, Menlo Park, San Diego, or San Francisco).

I'm a little shocked at some of the responses in this thread. I think some of the criticisms of my OP are legitimate but I also feel there is a lot of irrational anti-Latham bias with some of the people here. Some of the people here are probably bitter they didn't get offers from Latham.

First of all, a lot of people here are making straw man arguments saying that I said Latham was the most prestigious firm. I never said that or even claimed to say that.

With that said, it is indisputable that Latham is a V5 firm. This is literally a fact. When you wake up tomorrow morning this fact will still be true and there is nothing you can do about it. Some people seem to be suggesting that Latham is a "fake" V5 firm. What about firms like Davis Polk, which are literally not in the V5? I have never seen anyone call DPW a "fake" V5 firm.

Second of all, I am not a Latham recruiter. The mods here can see who I am - I have been on this site for years and am clearly a 2L law school student. I think it is very telling that some people think that anyone who says anything good about Latham must be a recruiter.

I do think some of the criticism of how Latham handled the recession is legitimate. But to be fair this probably applies more to the New York office.

Finally I think it is funny people seem to be accusing me of putting to much of my self-worth into my firm. I am not the one going around on internet message boards tearing down other peoples' firms. I just think that is a little funny.


I don't disagree with the general message here, but just wanted to emphasize that Vault rankings are pretty much meaningless in the markets that you mentioned. Having said this, Latham is easily tier 1 in Houston for corp, for example (although the recent defection of its biggest partner to Kirkland may change things). Conversely, Skadden (another V5) is close to bottom-tier in Houston. The same kind of pattern applies to the other non-NYC markets you listed. Also, Vault is useless for lit.

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby timbs4339 » Tue Sep 25, 2018 10:58 pm

OP: If you are going to a midsize Latham office in one of these cities, than some of the advice you are getting in this thread is even more important. The fact that Latham is a "V5" firm means nothing (just like the fact that DPW is highly ranked means very little if you are going to DPW's DC or Menlo Park offices). Just to take the first location on your list, Latham is certainly not one of the elite firms in Boston (but that doesn't mean Skadden or Weil or Kirkland are either).

I think Latham and certain other firms get a lot of flack on this forum because you have people going into threads where they are an option and telling 2L's they should pick them based on their Vault ranking without knowing anything about the poster's goals or the firm's history. I get it, those firms are currently in an expansion phase, but that's terrible advice to be giving to people looking to make a meaningful choice between firms. It's just like telling someone to pick a law school that is halfway across the country from the poster's target market vs. a local school just because the former is 25 spots higher in USNWR. People should be encouraged to actually figure out what they might want to do with their careers rather than just making choices based on a silly national ranking that everyone who has taken it seems to agree is largely bogus.

That's not to say that many of the posters won't be right - Latham's an elite firm in some markets and a great firm in many others. But that doesn't have anything to do with the Vault ranking.

For your purposes, just stop worrying about what your firm is Vault ranked and whether the Wall Street elite public M+A firms are more prestigious than Latham. It's not going to matter anyway since you aren't in New York.What's going to matter vastly more is Latham's rep in your market, the practices that it has the best rep in, the partners and clients you work for, and whether you survive to the midlevel ranks.

oblig.lawl.ref

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Re: Why does everyone dump on Latham?

Postby oblig.lawl.ref » Wed Sep 26, 2018 2:05 am

Anonymous User wrote:I think Latham and certain other firms get a lot of flack on this forum because you have people going into threads where they are an option and telling 2L's they should pick them based on their Vault ranking without knowing anything about the poster's goals or the firm's history. I get it, those firms are currently in an expansion phase, but that's terrible advice to be giving to people looking to make a meaningful choice between firms. It's just like telling someone to pick a law school that is halfway across the country from the poster's target market vs. a local school just because the former is 25 spots higher in USNWR. People should be encouraged to actually figure out what they might want to do with their careers rather than just making choices based on a silly national ranking that everyone who has taken it seems to agree is largely bogus.


This is correct. I turned down a V3 (haha) for a V50-ish and it was an easy decision and, in retrospect, far and away the right one. I never mention that though because it is entirely meaningless. It's not like turning down Harvard for a scholarship at Duke or whatever and telling everyone about it.

I would encourage dumping on Latham because it needs it when people like OP don't understand that V5 means almost nothing, especially now that Latham is barely in it. Law firms are not law schools. Vault isn't even USNWR or even close to it. OP appears to have picked a firm for very bad reasons. I think it's important to stop others from making similar, poorly informed decisions.



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