Law school news: bar passage rates hit low; B-school instead of law school; predicting your class standing.
Law school news: bar passage rates hit low; B-school instead of law school; predicting your class standing.
Two weeks after news broke of its high-profile raid on O’Melveny & Myers for six prominent entertainment industry partners, Latham & Watkins has opened a second Los Angeles office in Century City. Joseph Calabrese, a former practice chair at O’Melveny and head of the firm’s Southern California transactional group, chats with The Am Law Daily about his decision to join Latham.
A Nov. 20 ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit overturned the conviction of Albert Woodfox, who has been in solitary confinement for more than 42 years as the last member of the Angola Three. Woodfox's longtime lawyer from Squire Patton Boggs says his release depends on what Louisana’s attorney general does next: retry a 1972 murder case or admit defeat and release him.
Roughly 750 lawyers and staffers from Bingham McCutchen will join Morgan, Lewis & Bockius under the terms of an agreement finalized Sunday night between the Am Law 100 firms.
Romi Nayef, an ex-Dentons partner and a lead lawyer for Qatar in its controversial World Cup bid, joins Greenberg Traurig as of counsel in his hometown of Houston; Carlton Fields Jorden Burt hires more Bingham McCutchen refugees; a Hogan Lovells partner returns to Yale; Mintz Levin hires again from Edwards Wildman Palmer; Wiley Rein prepares to absorb a 50-person lobbying group and more notable hires from throughout The Am Law 200.
The two corporate partners led the deal for Latham & Watkins' representation of Allergan in a hotly contested takeover battle against Valeant Pharmaceuticals that ended with the company being bought by Actavis plc.
Cravath, Swaine & Moore has long kicked off associate bonus season, but this year saw Simpson Thacher & Bartlett beat its Wall Street rival to the punch with a Friday announcement that was soon followed by Paul Weiss and Milbank.
A bankruptcy judge in Manhattan brought Thelen LLP a giant step closer to a final resolution of its Chapter 7 liquidation, ruling Thursday that partners who haven't yet settled with the bankrupt firm's estate have to pay back monthly draws they received during the now-defunct firm's final year.
Some creators of ranking systems try to avoid responsibility for the behavior their rankings produce.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius has extended offers of full-time employment to more than 300 legal professionals at Bingham McCutchen, a source close to Morgan Lewis said.
Two Reed Smith partners have left the firm for wildly different opportunities. Richard "Rip" Sullivan Jr. became a partner at Arlington, Va.-based Bean Kinney & Korman, which recently saw its managing partner hospitalized after a brutal stabbing. Meanwhile, Pittsburgh-based litigator Bruce Stanley, a longtime nemesis of recently indicted former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship, launched his own solo shop to focus on representing the families of victims killed or injured in mining accidents.
Goodwin Procter, Hogan Lovells and Willkie Farr & Gallagher grabbed roles this week on a $2.29 billion initial public offering for Paramount Group, the largest-ever public listing for a real estate investment trust.
Bingham McCutchen employees in its Lexington, Ky., back offices have received a mix of termination letters and offer letters from Morgan Lewis, which last week agreed to absorb 226 of the firm's partners, along with other staff. Come Friday, as many as 30 marketing and document review employees in Kentucky could be let go, according to two sources, and the remainder must decide whether to accept Morgan Lewis' offers or potentially forgo severance.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Chinese oil and gas company CNOOC cut its ties to Baker & McKenzie because of alleged conflicts of interest between an in-house lawyer and her husband, the firm’s chief representative in Beijing.
The embattled Japanese auto parts company has retained a high-powered defense team from Dechert to handle a criminal probe, congressional inquiry and class action litigation related to a growing scandal into defective airbags.
Since free trade agreements opened the country's legal market to foreign firms in 2012, some 20 U.S. and U.K. firms have planted flags in Seoul, putting pressure on legal fees and ramping up competition between foreign and local firms.
Forget mentoring, sponsorship and empowerment.
Two Andrews Kurth partners peel off for Sidley Austin in Houston's hot lateral market; a handful of firms make big hires in London; Blank Rome adds a pair from Bingham McCutchen; and other notable moves from throughout The Am Law 200.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius has agreed to take on 226 partners from Bingham McCutchen, but uncertainty looms for the latter’s back office in Kentucky, opened two years ago.
Jones Day accuses the Careerist of lacking professionalism, integrity and more.
DLA Piper's Turkish office has demerged from the firm to reestablish itself as an independent practice.
The Am Law 100's most profitable firm on a per partner basis took the lead on two big deals announced Monday: Halliburton's $34.6 billion acquisition of oil services rival Baker Hughes and Botox maker Allergan on its proposed $66 billion sale to Actavis. A half-dozen other Am Law 100 firms also had key roles on both transactions.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius is gearing up to absorb 226 partners from Bingham McCutchen by month's end. But some partners from the latter not making the move are finding themselves stuck until Dec. 1. Meanwhile, The Am Law Daily has also identified the top Bingham McCutchen rainmakers headed to Morgan Lewis.
The labor and employment firm is taking another step toward increasing associate efficiency by getting rid of the billable hour as an evaluative tool for measuring performance and awarding bonuses.
Edwards Wildman Palmer and Bingham McCutchen lawyers head for the exits; Kirkland & Ellis hires again from Covington & Burling; a quick turnaround for two Quinn Emanuel litigators; government roles beckon some big firm partners and other notable hires from throughout The Am Law 200.
After months of sparring, Hachette Book Group and Amazon.com agreed Thursday to let the New York-based publisher set its own prices for e-books. Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer represented Hachette, while Amazon handled the matter in-house.
Todd, a corporate partner at Munger, Tolles & Olson, led the firm's deal team on Berkshire Hathaway's $4.7 billion all-stock buy of Procter & Gamble's Duracell battery unit.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius partners voted early Friday afternoon to admit 227 Bingham McCutchen partners into their fold, according to the firm. But not everyone at Bingham McCutchen will be making the move.
The ABA has finally weighed in on InfiLaw's proposed acquisition of the Charleston School of Law—sort of.
In what appears to be a strengthening recovery, legal industry revenues and demand increased in the first nine months of the year over the same period last year, according to an analysis of law firm financial results by Wells Fargo Private Bank's Legal Specialty Group.
Forget making law review or working your butt off. There are other ways to launch your career.
FIFA, the Zurich-based governing body for global soccer, released a summary of its investigation into the World Cup bidding process on Thursday, clearing Russia and Qatar of wrongdoing. But the head of the investigatory branch of the organization's ethics committee disagrees.
Analysis of states' employment projections shows higher ratios of lawyers and law graduates to jobs, but improvement is likely with fewer law students.
Bingham McCutchen's ongoing odyssey to find a merger partner could be coming to an end following a recent vote by the firm in favor of a combination with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius. The Am Law Daily has learned that Bingham cleared a key hurdle with the firm this summer by quietly settling an ongoing malpractice dispute with Frank McCourt, the former owner of Major League Baseball's Los Angeles Dodgers. The league is a longtime Morgan Lewis client.
The Wall Street stalwart took the lead Wednesday advising BB&T Corp. on its $2.5 billion cash-and-stock purchase of Susquehanna Bancshares, having recently handled two other banking mergers for clients AmericanWest Bank and Sterling Bancorp.
The firm agreed to settle claims filed by the trustee managing the bankruptcy estate of the Girls Gone Wild enterprise, and stepped up to represent the second wife of a deceased Proskauer litigation partner in an inheritance dispute.
Latham & Watkins makes a major bid to become a Hollywood heavyweight by luring six high-profile media and entertainment partners from O'Melveny & Myers; Proskauer Rose loses three while Duane Morris adds two; Sidley Austin and Wilson Elser partners go in-house and more notable hires from throughout The Am Law 200.
The firm closed the one-man outpost in Tennessee on Oct. 30 following the death this summer of former U.S. Senator Howard Baker, Jr., whose grandfather founded the office in 1888.
Didn't get into the law school of your choice? No problem.
The retail chain on Monday reported its largest revenue drop in four years, in part due to $5.3 million in fees spent during the third quarter following the suspension and internal investigation of ousted CEO Dov Charney. Jones Day, legal counsel to American Apparel's board on the internal probe, and FTI Consulting, head of the internal probe, collected the lion’s share of those fees.
The trend lines for corporate demand for legal services were once again mixed in the first half of 2014: Hours purchased were down by 4.4 percent compared with 2012, while fees paid increased by 2.9 percent, according to the latest LegalView Legal Market Index produced by TyMetrix.
In a down year for big corporate bankruptcies, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom bagged a big assignment Monday for Seattle-based biotechnology company Dendreon as the prostate cancer drug maker filed for bankruptcy in Delaware. Also tapped by the debtor as claims agent in its Chapter 11 case is Prime Clerk, a company started last year by former Weil, Gotshal & Manges restructuring partner Shai Waisman.
New York-based Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle is opening an office in Rome with the addition of two partners focused on banking and finance and real estate.
Firms like Thacher Proffitt & Wood, Thelen, Shea & Gould and Bower & Gardner may no longer exist, but their vast networks of former attorneys and staff still keep in touch through organized gatherings and informal meetups.
Covington & Burling picks up a leading consumer financial services lawyer from Morrison & Foerster, a firm that recently saw a technology transactions partner join the NBA; Gibson Dunn makes a government hire after election season; two more firms raid Bingham; and other notable hires from throughout The Am Law 200.
Drinker Biddle, Paul Weiss and Paul Hastings advised on Canadian beverage maker Cott Corp.'s acquisition of DSS Group Inc., the parent company of direct-to-consumer water and coffee services provider DS Services of America Inc.
The legal sector added 300 jobs last month, slowly recovering from a big dropoff in September, according to seasonally adjusted preliminary data released Friday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The firm's partner and cohead of technology finance and mergers and acquisitions led the legal team advising on diagnostic testing company Laboratory Corporation of America's buy of clinical trial research company Covance Inc. for $6.1 billion in cash and stock.
Thomas Jefferson School of Law survived its financial crisis. That's unfortunate.
The Washington, D.C.-based firm confirmed a decision to separate its eight-lawyer bankruptcy and financial restructuring practice following a strategic review.
Bingham McCutchen and Edwards Wildman Palmer aren't the only big firms with strong New England roots playing the merger game. Boston-based Hinckley, Allen & Snyder bolted on a four-lawyer IP boutique in Providence this week as the 150-lawyer regional firm with $90 million in gross revenue sidles up to the back end of The Am Law 200.
As Boston-based legal giants Bingham McCutchen and Edwards Wildman Palmer move toward potential merger votes with separate suitors, the latter is shedding a small number of staffers from its struggling London office. Bingham, meanwhile, could see up to 25 partners in three offices head elsewhere ahead of a possible union with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, which this week quietly hired the cohead of Bingham's derivatives and commodities practice.
Jones Day's $3 million pets; Weil partner's legal woes; 3,000-hour billable requirement.
Michael Viccora, a labor and employment partner who worked at Seyfarth Shaw for 25 years, has enrolled in a teacher certification and master’s degree program at George Mason University with the goal of returning to his first love: teaching high school social studies.
New York-based wine and spirits company Sovereign Brands tapped Cooley for counsel on its sale of its interest in the Armand de Brignac Champagne brand to a new company led by hip-hop icon Shawn "Jay Z" Carter.
The firm on Tuesday announced that it had picked up Patrick Larrivé as a managing partner and Christophe Simonnet as an M&A partner to help expand Dentons' presence in North Africa. The two arrive from Paris-based firm UGGC Avocats' offices in Morocco.
Overall, demand momentum improved compared with the first half of 2014. And although there was a slight slowing in revenue growth, while expense growth increased slightly compared with the first half, margin growth continued to be positive.
One of the world's largest firms expands in the Garden State and Casablanca; Katten Muchin Rosenman adds a former Dealmaker of the Year; Norton Rose Fulbright gets into cybersecurity; Willkie Farr & Gallagher goes to Houston and more notable hires from throughout The Am Law 200.
Willkie Farr & Gallagher is opening an office in Houston, marking the Wall Street firm's foray into the booming legal market in Texas as well as its first new domestic office since 1981, when it opened in Washington, D.C.
David Navetta and Boris Segalis are leaving Chicago-based InfoLaw Group LLP to join Norton Rose Fulbright's offices in Denver and New York as part of a wave of hiring by Big Law to beef up their booming cybersecurity practices.
An annual partnership retreat at Bingham McCutchen scheduled for this week in Scottsdale, Ariz., has been canceled. Bingham's partners are facing a Wednesday deadline to accept offer letters from Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, as the two firms continue to mull a potential combination of their operations.
The American Lawyer held its 11th annual awards ceremony honoring Lifetime Achievers, the A-List and best legal department winners at New York's Gotham Hall on Oct. 29.
Monday was a three-deal day for the corporate lawyers at Cravath, Swaine & Moore and Sullivan & Cromwell, as the two leading Am Law 100 firms each advised clients on a trio of notable transactions. Covington & Burling, Hogan Lovells, Jones Day, Kirkland, Davis Polk and Wachtell also had key roles on five separate deals.
Two weeks after Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe opened an affiliated office in Cote d’Ivoire’s capital city of Abidjan, the local bar association accused the San Francisco-based firm of misrepresenting two of its lawyers.
Hispanics and Asians pull ahead, blacks still behind.
A Steptoe & Johnson crisis manager joins a spin shop, while a former special counsel quietly departs; Kirkland adds another Skadden partner; King & Spalding brings on Bobby Jindal's brother; Baker & Hostetler bags three across the country; a Bingham IP star departs; and more notable hires from throughout The Am Law 200.
Paul Hastings corporate partner Thomas Kruger—an avid bike rider who last month helped Tate's Bake Shop find a private equity buyer—is advising another investor group on its purchase of Alta Bicycle Share, a company behind ride-sharing programs in several cities, including New York. Edwards Wildman Palmer and Jones Day also picked up roles on the deal, which could give the Big Apple’s embattled Citi Bike program a much-needed reboot.
After more than two years and nearly $14 million in legal and consultant fees, a judge has approved the city of Stockton, Calif.'s plan to exit from bankruptcy. Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe is raking in the bulk of those fees as lead counsel to the municipality.
Davidson, partner and head of Baker Botts' master limited partnership practice, took the lead for the team advising the conflicts committee of Williams Partners L.P. as controlling owner Williams Companies merges it with Access Midstream Partners L.P. in a $50 billion transaction.
In our latest roundup of litigation in which Am Law 200 firms are either defendants or plaintiffs, Morgan Lewis beats back legal malpractice claims, while Dentons, Squire Patton Boggs and DLA Piper try to get out from under them.
Irwin Raij, cochair of Foley & Lardner's sports industry team, is part of a star-studded, 22-person investor group bringing a second professional soccer team to Los Angeles. McDermott Will & Emery and Proskauer Rose are also working on the deal, which reportedly marks the highest price ever paid for a franchise in Major League Soccer.
Reed Smith just launched its global Ebola group. Should your firm do so too?
After 12 years, Norton Rose Fulbright chief executive Peter Martyr will relinquish his managing partner responsibilities in the U.K. to Martin Scott, the firm announced Wednesday. Meanwhile, John Coleman, managing partner of Norton Rose Fulbright Canada, will pass the baton to Charles Hurdon.
News roundup: Law schools, bonus season and bad TV.
As the 2014-15 National Basketball season tips off this week, several Am Law 100 firms are getting in on some off-the-court legal action. DLA Piper has been retained to advise on a sale of the NBA's Atlanta Hawks, Sullivan & Cromwell is counseling the owner of the New York Knicks on a potential split of his company's operations and Proskauer Rose its representing the league itself on a landmark deal in Brazil. The NBA players union also filed its annual operating report, which details legal fees paid to Paul Weiss, Orrick, Steptoe, Weil and Winston & Strawn.
David Tresch, Mayer Brown’s former chief information officer who in April 2013 admitted to running an eight-year scheme to defraud the firm, was sentenced to 27 months in prison and also ordered to pay $1.1 million in restitution.
Three more Edwards Wildman Palmer partners head elsewhere amid the firm's looming merger vote with Locke Lord; Kirkland's latest lateral raid targets Skadden; a Bingham McCutchen restructuring partner heads in-house; Tom Daschle joins forces with Baker Donelson; and more notable hires from throughout The Am Law 200.
A few months after losing out in its pursuit of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett IPO specialist Joshua Ford Bonnie, Kirkland & Ellis has poached Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom corporate finance partner Richard Aftanas in New York.
Riding the wave of foreign investment south of the border, Baker & McKenzie has lured a team of transactional partners from DLA Piper's Mexico City office. At the same time, DLA Piper announced its own plans to combine with local firm Gallastegui y Lozano.
Chiquita Brands International accepted a $682 million cash offer from orange juice producer Cutrale Group and holding company Safra Group three days after its own shareholders voted down a planned inversion deal with Fyffe. Skadden and Kirkland & Ellis advised Chiquita, while Cravath represented to Cutrale and Safra.
After months of rumors, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom confirms that it will leave its current New York headquarters at 4 Times Square and head to the city's Hudson Yards district on the far west end of Manhattan in the spring of 2020.
Jian Ghomeshi, the former host of Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's cultural affairs radio show 'Q,' has hired Dentons Canada to represent him in a $55 million lawsuit against his employer after he was dismissed over allegations of sexual misconduct.
Is Philadelphia the new Houston?
Melanie Moss slaved away as an associate in New York for nine years—first at Arent Fox, then at Dewey Ballantine. But rather than pursuing a partnership track, she headed for paradise.
You don't have to go to Harvard Law to make money like a Harvard grad.
Eight months after leaving Kirkland & Ellis for McDermott Will & Emery, private equity partner Leonard Klingbaum is on the move again; Greenberg Traurig hires a former California Senate leader; Weil, Gotshal & Manges adds a high-yield partner in London; and other notable hires from throughout The Am Law 200.
Borden Ladner Gervais, one of Canada's largest firms, will open an office in Beijing. The Toronto-based firm, which focuses on business and IP law, cited China's growing economic significance to Canada as the impetus for its new outpost.
Ahead of a looming merger vote with Locke Lord, a 20-lawyer IP group from Edwards Wildman Palmer in Boston is poised to depart for Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo as a result of a conflict between their representation of a large pharmaceutical company and Locke Lord's work for a generic drug manufacturer.
Kenneth Wainstein, a former U.S. Justice Department official and chair of the white-collar defense and investigations practice at Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, headed an eight-month investigation that revealed nearly two decades of academic fraud involving thousands of students at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, many of whom were college athletes.
A month after Bingham McCutchen's management disclosed to its partnership plans to merge with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, lingering issues remain over what a combined firm might look like. At the same time, Bingham is grappling with internal issues, including controversial pay packages, a heavy debt load and an exodus of top talent.
Is your job covering you for egg freezing?
Snell & Wilmer announced on Tuesday that John Bouma, who served as chair for 30 years, will be replaced by corporate partner Matthew Feeney. Porter Wright Morris & Arthur will also see a leadership change, with its chief operating partner Robert Tannous to take over for Robert "Buzz" Trafford, who served managing partner for 18 years.
Six weeks after joining Fried Frank, former Sidley Austin securities and derivatives enforcement head David Katz returns to the firm; Kirkland & Ellis makes two more high-profile additions; Schulte Roth snags Patterson Belknap's trusts and estates chair; and other notable hires from throughout The Am Law 200.
In yet another high-profile lateral addition, Kirkland & Ellis poached Weil, Gotshal & Manges private equity partner Douglas Ryder in New York. The hire is the latest in a series of notable moves by Kirkland, which also recently raided Ropes & Gray in Hong Kong, but will lose the founding partner of its San Francisco office to a longtime private equity client.
The private equity firm is stepping up its investment in Creative Artists Agency to become the majority owner of the talent agency. TPG turned to Wachtell Lipton, Rosen & Katz for legal advice, while CAA tapped Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton.
Cravath, Hogan Lovells and Weil advise as IBM agrees to pay Santa Clara, Calif.-based Globalfoundries, Inc. $1.5 billion in cash to take on its money-losing semiconductor business, including manufacturing plants and intellectual property.
The downsizing trend for office space continues but is starting to slow as many firms already have given up space per lawyer to save money, according to the latest survey by commercial real estate services company Jones Lang LaSalle.
Some juicy, quirky news items you might have missed.
As the U.S. moves to become the world's largest oil producer, lawyers from Cooley, Latham & Watkins, McGuireWoods, Norton Rose Fulbright, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz are helping QEP Resources unload its natural gas pipeline and processing unit for $2.5 billion in cash to Tesoro Logistics, a refinery operator owned by Tesoro Corp.
Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe is opening up shop in West Africa, while Littler Mendelson's growing Latin American presence gets a boost with a new outpost in Peru.