Floyd Abrams of Cahill and Evan Chesler of Cravath: two great lawyers who are also great to work for.
With all the negative press surrounding partners lately — see, e.g., here and here — it’s about time for some good news, about good partners.
Last month we asked you to nominate the best partners you work for, tell us why they are the best, and rate them in six categories: expertise within the practice area, quality of work given to associates, hands-on training given to associates, provision of feedback on associate work, respect for associates’ schedules, and professionalism with associates. And we didn’t even have to pay these associates to say nice things about the partners they nominated.
Over the next few weeks, the ATL Career Center, hosted by Lateral Link, will bring you the list of the best partners to work for, divided up by geographic region. This week we will focus on New York, Above the Law’s home base, and give you the top 24 partners to work for in the Big Apple as nominated by you, our readers.
Judge Posner at ACS panel: For my home equity loan, I got 100s of pages of documentation; I didn’t read, I just signed. #ACS10#Posner#LOL
This generated laughter from the crowd, due to Judge Posner’s status as one of the greatest legal minds of his (or any other) generation. It was amusing to imagine the brilliant Posner flipping page after page of paperwork and mechanically scribbling next to every “Sign Here” flag, without even bothering to read what he was signing. It’s the kind of behavior one would expect from a person earning $35,000 and a buying a $600,000 home two hours outside of Phoenix, circa 2006 — but not from one of America’s leading jurists.
As it turns out, Judge Posner isn’t the only boldface name of the legal profession who skips over the fine print in form contracts….
This morning I attended a very interesting panel discussion sponsored by the Yale Law School Center for the Study of Corporate Law, Citizens United: Mountain or Mole Hill? Because the talk was sponsored by my rather left-leaning alma mater, I expected the answer to the question presented to be “Mountain” — and not just any mountain, but Mount Doom.
I was pleasantly surprised. The deeply thoughtful discussion pointed more in the direction of “Mole Hill.” This was especially surprising given the liberal bona fides of the three star panelists:
Floyd Abrams, the longtime Cahill Gordon partner and celebrated First Amendment lawyer, who argued in the case for Senator Mitch McConnell (as amicus curiae, in support of Citizens United);
Heather Gerken, the J. Skelly Wright Professor of Law at Yale Law School, and a leading scholar of election law and voting rights; and
Samuel Issacharoff, the Reiss Professor of Constitutional Law at NYU School of Law, and an expert in voting rights and civil procedure.
Could the credit rating agencies who are now being sued for their alleged role in the financial meltdown have a valid First Amendment defense? Floyd Abrams, god of First Amendment law and longtime partner at Cahill Gordon & Reindel, thinks so.
Abrams is the subject of a lengthy, interesting article in Sunday’s New York Times, focused on his representation of Standard & Poor’s, the biggest of the rating agencies. From the NYT:
Dozens of investors have filed lawsuits seeking redress from the rating agencies, contending that the companies bear responsibility for investors’ losses, under a Whitman’s sampler of theories. The recession, in other words, is about to begin its litigation phase, and Mr. Abrams and a handful of partners at the law firm of Cahill Gordon & Reindel are readying defenses for more than 30 suits filed against S.& P. Up first, an oral argument on a motion to dismiss one case is set for July 31….
Mr. Abrams will contend that S.& P.’s ratings deserve exactly the sort of free-speech protections afforded to journalists, on the theory that a bond rating is like an editorial — an opinion based on an educated guess about the future. And for the same reason you can’t sue editorial writers, Mr. Abrams will argue that you can’t sue a bond rater because the economy went into a free fall that few saw coming.
Is this a valid comparison? Is trying to sue a ratings agency like trying to sue a newspaper editorial board? Or the weatherman?
Read more, and debate the issue, after the jump.
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When Chintan Panchal decided to leave a global BigLaw partnership to start his own firm, he could only hope that he would face the high-quality problem of firm building that many had cautioned him about. Focused on the uncertainty surrounding of a new firm launch, he decided to tackle staffing needs, IT challenges, and financial planning requirements after he had built up his legal practice.
Panchal Associates LLP–a corporate/finance and outside general counsel boutique–was quickly off to a great start. Clients and matters were flying in the door, and Chintan soon had a team of lawyers and staff with a variety of operational needs. To continue building an excellent team and provide them with a competitive benefits package, to expand his physical presence to include a European practice and additional partners, and to scale his operations and IT capabilities to support this growing enterprise brought with it demands of time, money, and expertise. Chintan knew he needed help.
“With the assistance of NexFirm, we have upgraded the capabilities of our firm to meet, and in some cases exceed, the standards we were used to at our former BigLaw firms. Operationally, we can now attract and service clients we didn’t have the bandwidth to support in the past, and continue to build our team with the best and brightest legal talent in the industry,” said Chintan Panchal, adding “It has worked out quite well in our case; NexFirm is an essential partner for us.”
The holiday season is upon us, and yet again, you have no idea what to get for the fickle lawyer in your life. We’re here to help. Even if your bonus check hasn’t arrived yet, any one of the gifts we’ve highlighted here could be a worthy substitute until your employer decides to make it rain.
We’ve got an eclectic selection for you to choose from, so settle in by that stack of documents yet to be reviewed and dig in…
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