If you’re a former Supreme Court clerk, the legal world is your oyster. In the words of one observer, “Supreme Court clerkships have become the Willy Wonka golden tickets of the legal profession. So many top-shelf opportunities within the law, such as tenure-track professorships and jobs in the SG’s office, [are] reserved for members of the Elect.”
If you work at a hedge fund, maybe after a stint at Goldman Sachs or a similarly elite investment bank, you’re the Wall Street version of a SCOTUS clerk — at the top of the field, but with way more money. There aren’t many Lawyerly Lairs out there that cost $60 million (the cost of hedge fund magnate Steve Cohen’s new Hamptons house).
What could lure four high-powered lawyers and hedge-fund types, including two former clerks to the all-powerful Justice Anthony Kennedy, to leave their current perches? How about the chance to earn the kind of money that would make a Supreme Court clerkship bonus look like a diner waitress’s tip?
Ted Olson and David Boies: adversaries, then allies, then adversaries again.
After covering the Dewey & LeBoeuf bankruptcy hearing on Wednesday morning, I walked a few blocks uptown to the Second Circuit for another exciting event: oral argument in the closely watched Argentina bondholder litigation. It was a Biglaw battle royal, pitting Ted Olson, the former solicitor general and current Gibson Dunn partner, against a tag team of top lawyers that included David Boies, Olson’s adversary in Bush v. Gore (and ally in Hollingsworth v. Perry).
Here’s my account of the proceedings, including photos….
It must be tough to leave an apartment like this one, with great views of Central Park, to go work in a drab federal office building.
Being a federal prosecutor is an amazing legal job, but it doesn’t pay particularly well. When I worked in theU.S. Attorney’s Office, I earned well under six figures. An assistant U.S. attorney can break the $100,000 mark after a sufficient number of years in practice, but AUSAs generally don’t earn Biglaw money.
(People who work as special AUSAs on secondment from better-paying parts of the federal government, such as Main Justice or the SEC, earn significantly more than regular AUSAs on the “AD” — Administratively Determined, aka Awfully Depressing — pay scale. But even these SAUSAs, not to be confused with the completely unpaid SAUSAs, make less than they would in comparable private practice positions.)
This brings us to the question du jour: how can a federal prosecutor afford to live in an apartment that is worth more than twice as much as the most expensive lawyer home in Washington, D.C.? We’re talking about a $25 million apartment on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, in one of Fifth Avenue’s finest prewar buildings, with amazing views of Central Park.
Transactional attorneys have been showered with opportunities lately. Spring has sprung and it is raining jobs for fund formation associates. The recruiters at Lateral Link are currently looking to fill a number of fund formation positions in Chicago, Hong Kong, L.A., London, the Silicon Valley and the Middle East. The latest Job of the Week is for a junior associate with experience in the formation and management of private equity funds.
Position: Junior Associate
Description: A national firm is looking to hire a junior associate at a top firm with general corporate or tax experience. Private equity fund formation and management experience is preferred but not required. Excellent academic credentials are required.
Fund practices are heating up in the Windy City, and this week’s job is a great opportunity for a junior attorney. As Lateral Link principal T.J. Duane recently discussed in the American Lawyer, lateral hiring next year is going to be hot. So if you are looking to make a move, now is the time to start the process — and Lateral Link can help.
Position: Junior Fund Formation Associate
Location: Chicago, IL
Description: Top Chicago corporate practice seeks a junior corporate associate to join its fund formation practice and to focus exclusively on fund formation transactions. One to three years of corporate transactional experience required. Experience in the formation, structuring and management of private equity funds is ideal but not required. Big firm experience and top academics required.
For more information about this opening, see Position 7422 on Lateral Link. If you are not a current Lateral Link member, you can register for free at www.laterallink.com. All active Lateral Link members work with a personal search consultant who provides assistance throughout the job search process.
We’ve been following the legal wranglings between SAC Capital’s Steve Cohen and his ex-wife, Patricia. Why wouldn’t we, how often does an ex-wife file civil RICO charges against a billionaire?
Initially, Patricia Cohen retained civil RICO expert, Paul Batista. Apparently, Cohen and counsel didn’t see eye-to-eye. Batista withdrew the initial suit and Cohen retained Gaytri Kachroo of McCarter & English.
But the drama doesn’t stop there. Patricia Cohen might at times act like she has a little bit too much in common with Glen Close in Fatal Attraction, but it’s Batista who won’t be ignored…
Patricia Cohen, ex-wife of SAC Capital billionaire Steve Cohen, has dropped her lawsuit against her ex-husband.
Except she hasn’t. Dealbreaker is covering all the ins-and-outs of this case. After it was reported that the lawsuit had been dropped, Dealbreaker received comment from Patricia Cohen. Bess Levin writes:
Uh, so Patricia has this to say: “I did not authorize Paul [Batista] to withdraw the case. My attorney, Gaytri Kachroo, will take the necessary actions in response to this.” So we’re back on!
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Ed. note: The Asia Chronicles column is authored by Kinney Recruiting. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates, counsels and partners in Asia than any other recruiting firm in each of the past six years. You can reach them by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Deal flow has clearly picked recently up for most US associates, counsels and partners in Hong Kong/China and Singapore. We are on the phone with a lot of these folks on a daily basis, many of whom we have known for years. Further, the head of our Asia team, Evan Jowers, and Kinney’s founder and president, Robert Kinney, frequently meet in person with leading US partners in Asia to assess their needs and keep on top of the inside scoop at as many firms as possible. The need for legal recruiting help in Asia from experienced recruiters appears to be live and well. In March, Evan and Robert were in Beijing at such meetings, in April, Evan was in Hong Kong, and for half of June Evan will be in Shanghai and Hong Kong. Thus its pretty easy for us to tell when there has been an across-the-market pick up in capital markets and corporate work.
On an average day in Asia when Evan and Robert visit firms, they typically have 5 to 9 meetings a day, mostly with US partners in the market. The reason they have these meetings is not simply because Kinney makes a lot of US attorney placements in Asia and that a particular firm may have openings; instead these are just visits with friends. After years of working together as business partners, the folks at Kinney are actually these peoples’ friends. The firms Kinney work closely with in Asia (which is just about every law firm – call us if you want to know the one firm in the world we will never place anyone with again, ever, and why) look forward to the visits, or at least act like they do. After seven years in the market, many of the client partners are former associate candidates. Also, these US partners see Kinney as a very good source of market information as well, because they know how deep their contacts are in the market and how frequently they are speaking to counterparts at peer firms.
In a land that is right here and in a time that is right now, a technology has arisen so powerful that it can replace basic human document review. Is it time to bow down before our new robot overlords?
First, here’s a little story about me: my life in the legal world began as a paralegal. My first case was a GIANT patent infringement case that was already six years old and had involved as many as five companies, multiple US courts, the ITC and an international standards committee. I knew nothing about any of this.
On my first day, my supervisor (a paralegal with at least eight other cases driving her crazy) sat me down in front of a Concordance database with a 100,000+ patents and patent file histories. “Code these,” she said. I learned that “coding”, for the purposes of this exercise, meant manually typing the inventor’s name, the title of the patent, the assignee, the file date, and other objective data for each document. I worked on that project – and only that project – for at least the first six months of my job. After a week or so, time began to blur.
What I know, in retrospect and with absolutely certainty, is that as time began to blur, so did my judgment. So did my attention to detail. If you could tell me that I did not make at least one mistake a day – one inconsistent spelling, one reversed day and month, one incorrectly spaced title – I frankly would need to see your evidence. I would not believe it. The human mind is trainable but it is not a machine.
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