Steve Molo

Andy DeVooght

We’ve discussed in these pages the trend of going “from Biglaw to boutique” (and it was the title of Tom Wallerstein’s column for us as well). Lawyers who could easily work at mega-firms are opting instead for the flexibility and collegiality of small-firm practice — and clients are following them.

Today’s notable move involves Andy DeVooght, coming out of the U.S. Attorney’s in Chicago. DeVooght has an enviable résumé. Before joining the U.S. Attorney’s Office, he worked as a partner at Winston & Strawn and clerked on the U.S. Supreme Court, for the late Chief Justice Rehnquist.

Instead of returning to Biglaw, a common path for someone in DeVooght’s shoes, he’s joining a buzz-generating boutique. Which one?

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Musical Chairs: An Elite Boutique’s Latest High-Profile Hire”

As regular readers of Lawyerly Lairs know well, some attorneys have beautiful — and expensive — homes. As we’ve just learned from the impressive submissions in our contest to find the best law firm offices in America, many attorneys’ workplaces are no less spectacular.

With the help of Mary Kate Sullivan, our wonderful intern here at Above the Law, I’ve winnowed the large and impressive field to eight finalists. There’s nice diversity here, in terms of firms (Biglaw versus non-Biglaw); decor (traditional versus modern); and geography (seven different cities, located all over the country).

Let’s check them out, shall we?

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Ed. note: This is the final column by Anonymous Partner based on his interview of a more-senior partner, “Old School Partner” (“OSP”). You can read the first column here and the second column here.

We had been talking for a while, when the conversation turned to Old School Partner’s experiences as a general counsel. He pulled no punches. “I was a very sophisticated consumer of legal services,” Old School Partner told me. In short, Old School Partner, when he turned to outside counsel, had high standards.

Having already decided to leave the security of a leadership position at a Biglaw firm for in-house life, Old School Partner demanded the same attention to detail and professionalism from his chosen outside counsel as he displayed when doing work for his former clients. As an example, he shared how he went about choosing litigation counsel.

“I was looking for counselors,” he told me, and that meant no fluffy credentials without real experience backing them up. “I wanted trial lawyers with real trial experience, who could have the confidence to forego a deposition that was not going to be of any value at trial.” Unlike many clients today, Old School Partner was willing to pay top dollar for real guidance, and did not default to assigning his cases to the lowest bidder or a firm that had a “preferred relationship” with his company. I got the sense that he viewed each case his company was engaged in as a business problem that needed solving, and was willing to pay handsomely for a solution — because he realized that throwing money at a litigation “team” was ultimately less effective and more costly than buying top-drawer help….

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I believe the defendant failed a saving throw against berserker, so when he killed those people he didn't know right from wrong.

* Dressing shrinks as wizards when they testify would be an AWESOME idea. I’m serious. Why can’t we have this? And titles, too. “Your Honor, I call Dr. Freud — Ph.D in weakness management and keeper of the sacred staffs of Ivory guard — to the stand.” [Overlawyered]

* iTextbooks! Could be awesome, could widen the gap between the rich and the iPoor. [Adjunct Law Prof Blog]

* Old lawyer accidentally smuggles a gun onto a plane, mainly because security — which noticed said gun — forgot to stop her. TSA doesn’t make us more safe, folks. It just makes us more molested. [Daily Mail]

* Apparently, LLMs go great with Brazilians. The people, not the grooming. Or maybe both — I don’t know, but I was only asked about people. [Live Mint]

* To be clear, putting slavery analogies into our math problems is bad… unless you are a college basketball or football star trying to work out how much you got paid in free tuition for last night’s game, versus how much the university made off of the performance of your team. Then the analogy is “apt.” [CBS Atlanta]

* White people problems, written by a former Cahill Gordon associate who quit to take a job in television. [Funny or Die]

* Additional impressive hires by an elite litigation boutique. How long before MoloLamken ends up on somebody’s hot list? [MoloLamken]

We’ve reached the end of our career advice webcast, We Know What You Should Do This Summer, in which a panel of experts provided career advice for this summer. The panel was sponsored by our friends at the Practical Law Company, which provides law students with free access to its excellent resources so they can succeed over the summer. Check out PLC’s law student home page to learn more.

Check out the last installment, as well as links to all of the prior segments, after the jump.

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A Final Note on Networking.

In prior installments of our Above the Law webcast offering career advice for this summer, graciously sponsored by our friends at the Practical Law Company, we’ve focused on what law students should do in order to make the most of their summers. We’ve discussed such subjects as how to find summer jobs, how to network, and how to balance work and social activities.

Now let’s turn our attention to the flip side of the coin: what not to do over the summer….

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What NOT to do: potential pitfalls for summer associates.

Law school deans — as well as other administrators, and law students — obsess over law school rankings. It’s understandable why deans fixate on rankings; for better or worse, it’s their job.

But what about law students? Should they put so much stock in rankings? Do people, specifically employers, pay too much attention to where an applicant went to law school?

May is graduation month. Once you’re out in the real world of legal employment, do folks actually care where you went to school? That’s the topic for the latest installment in the ATL career advice webcast, sponsored by the Practical Law Company: Does your law school matter?

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Does where you went to law school matter?

In cooperation with our friends at the Practical Law Company, we produced a webcast, We Know What You Should Do This Summer. Career experts, including law firm partners, discussed subjects of interest to law students who want to excel as summer associates.

The recession might be officially over, but we’re not back to the glory days of 2006 and 2007. If you’ll be a summer associate this year — congratulations, by the way — you don’t want to run the risk of being no-offered.

Let’s take a look at the latest video segment, which looks at how economic times have affected what’s expected of summer associates, and offers practical advice on how to succeed as a summer….

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The post-recession summer associate experience.

Here at Above the Law, we try to offer practical tips for how to succeed in the legal profession. See, e.g., our recent posts about how to take vacation in Biglaw, or the best time for starting your own law firm.

Together with another company that provides useful advice and insight to lawyers, the Practical Law Company, we produced a webcast, We Know What You Should Do This Summer. A panel of career experts tackled topics of interest to law students who want to succeed over the summer — and beyond.

Prior installments of the webcast appeared here and here. Now let’s look at the latest segment….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “ATL Webcast: Career Advice for This Summer (Part 3)
Government jobs; balancing work and play in Biglaw.

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