50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

minnbills
Posts: 138
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2018 8:53 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by minnbills » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:41 am

I'm happy to share some knowledge about Minneapolis.

A brief primer on the market: The State of Minnesota enjoys a robust and diversified economy. The excellent quality of life in the land of lakes, coupled with the presence of three law schools in the state, has resulted in an over-saturated market in which entry-level positions for lawyers are fiercely competitive. Further, students who leave the state to pursue law degrees with T14 schools often come back to MN within a few years of graduating.

There is a large federal bench in the state, with 3 8th Circuit Judges (Straas, Murphy, and Loken), 12 District Court Judges, 9 Magistrate Judges, and 5 Bankruptcy Judges calling MN home. Accordingly, there are strong opportunities for federal clerkships here. Likewise, the MN Court of Appeals typically hires about 30 clerks per year, and the MN Supreme Court hires maybe 10-15 clerks.

Large MN firms generally operate on a low-cost business model, as opposed to true biglaw firms located on the coasts. This means that while starting salaries may appear commensurate with what a junior associate can make in NYC or another large market, there is very little salary growth after the first year. Thus, a senior associate at a market-paying firm in MN may only make about 200k per year. Typical yearly salary increases are in the range of 0K (seriously) to 5k per year. However, the low cost of living and strong exit options because of the sheer number of corporations located in MN makes the market an attractive option nonetheless.

Partners at the largest firms in MN may make about 500k per year, while partners at the remainder of these firms are probably bringing in between 250-350/yr depending on the practice area and seniority. However, the low cost of living, excellent public schools, and lower hours than what you find in NYC/Chi make partnership at one of these firms a great landing spot.

Law Schools: There are three law schools in Minnesota: (1) The University of Minnesota; (2) Mitchell Hamline School of Law; and (3) the University of St. Thomas. UMN is by far the highest ranked, usually bouncing between 20-25 in the US News rankings. UMN dominates the market, which a majority of large firm and clerkship placements each year going to UMN grads. UMN enjoys some national reach, with a small percentage of students placing into large firms and federal clerkships across the country. Mitchell Hamline is the product of a merger between William Mitchell School of Law (which produced Chief Justice Berger) and Hamline School of Law. Though not highly-ranked, Mitchell Hamline has a robust and active alumni network in the state, and enjoys strong placement into smaller firms and state-level clerkships. UST opened its doors about 15 years ago, but has carved out a space for itself in the market. Backed up by a strong business school, UST routinely places some high-ranking students into prestigious jobs in Minnesota.

Large/Prestigious firms:

1) Greene Espel. The highest paying and most-prestigious firm in the state is Greene Espel. GE is a boutique mostly-litigation firm which employs maybe 50 lawyers. With starting salaries at 180k, GE sets the market and positions are highly competitive, usually going to 8th Circuit Clerks.

2) Jones Day. Jones Day, Nights, and Weekends opened its Minneapolis office two years ago by poaching several partners from other prominent Twin Cities firms. Jones Day has quickly established itself as a litigation powerhouse in the state, boasts 30 lawyers in MN, and is the second-highest paying firm with starting salaries at 160k. The firm has hired as many as 5 federal clerks per year since it opened, with these hires comprising almost the totality of junior-level hiring. The firm boasts former US Attorney Andrew Luger as a partner.

3) Dorsey & Whitney, and Faegre Baker Daniels. These two firms were historically the two powerhouses in the MN legal field. Dorsey famously produced Justice Harry Blackmun, the primary author of Roe V. Wade, and counts Senator Amy Klobuchar and former Governor Tim Pawlenty as alumni. Former Vice President Walter Mondale is currently a partner at the firm. Dorsey enjoys a nationally prominent M&A practice and has consistently delivered one of the highest deal volumes of any firm in the country. Dorsey's New York office has grown to about 100 lawyers in recent years. Dorsey is known to be actively seeking another large firm in the U.S. to merge with.

The law firm of Faegre Baker Daniels is the largest firm in MN, and enjoys strong practice groups across the firm. Faegre is a product of a merger between indianapolis based Baker Daniels and the old Minneapolis firm of Faegre & Benson. Now, Faegre boasts particularly strong corporate and restructuring groups, and has a nationally-prominent financial services litigation team. Faegre is known to service some of the strongest hedge funds in the midwest. Both Dorsey and Faegre have offices across the U.S. and increasingly across the world. Junior associates at either firm can expect starting salaries of 140k (might be up to 160k shortly) and long hours. Both firms typically hire 5-10 summer associates per year in Minneapolis, and actively recruit laterals from coastal biglaw firms.

All of the following may be more appropriately described as midlaw

4) Robins Kaplan. The law firm of Robins Kaplan is a large litigation-focused firm. With a reputation as a mini quinn emanuel, Robins associates can expect starting salaries of 140k and a sink-or-swim environment. Robins boasts one of the strongest IP litigation teams in the country. Robins typically hires 5-10 summer associates per year. Known to be a hostile environment with a lot of churn.

5) IP-only Firms. Fish and Richardson, Patterson Thuente, Carlson Caspers, and Merchant and Gould are all boutique IP firms. Prospective associates should know that these firms generally offer higher compensation packages than non-IP firms.

6) Winthrop & Weinstein. "Fratty" is an appropriate description of the culture at this firm. Honestly, I don't like almost everyone I know who works there. Winthrop is known as a strong litigation firm with an active presence in the agribusiness space. Winthrop pays 160k and is a sink-or-swim environment.

7) Stinson Leonard Street. The product of the merger of the Minneapolis firm of Leonard Street and Deinard, and the Stinson firm of Kansas City, Stinson is a strong regional firm with some offices on the coasts. Stinson boasts a strong corporate department and pays 140k to first years. Stinson tends to hire 3-5 summer associates per year.

8) Fredrikson & Byron. "Where law and business meet," Fredrikson has staked itself out as a strong business-oriented full service law firm headquartered in Minneapolis. Fredrikson boasts one of the strongest litigation teams in the state, has a strong presence in the oil & gas field, and also features the only large debtor-side bankruptcy practice in the United States west of Chicago. Fredrikson frequently hires laterals from biglaw firms on the coasts and has been expanding aggressively in recent years. Starting salaries of 140k and strong partnership prospects make this an attractive firm for young attorneys. 3-5 summer associates positions per year.

9) Briggs & Morgan. Briggs is a regional firm with a strong litigation presence in MN. Several former MN Supreme Court Justices reside in the litigation department. The firm has a "fratty" reputation and is known to have some outsized personalities among its partnership ranks. The firm has a strong construction and real estate practice. Starting salaries at 140k and 2-5 summer associates per year.

10) Gray Plant Mooty Mooty & Bennett. GPM is a first-rate, if a bit on the small side, law firm that boasts one of the strongest franchise practice groups in the U.S. GPM is known to grow conservatively and offers some of the best entry-level experience available in the state of MN. The firm has a genteel culture and is known as a great place to work. Starting salaries at 130k and 2-5 summer associate hires per year.

11) Maslon. Formerly "Maslon Edelman Borman & Brand," Maslon began as the "jewish" firm in MN back when it was difficult for jewish lawyers to find employment with large firms. (Seriously.) Maslon rebranded in recent years and enjoys an excellent reputation as a small-ish firm with first-rate lawyers. The firm has a professorial culture, boasts one of the strongest litigation teams in the midwest and heavily recruits laterals from coastal biglaw firms. Starting salaries at 130k (might be 120k) and 1-3 summer associates per year.

12) Fox Rothschild. The Philadelphia-based firm of Fox Rothschild moved into the MN market when it acquired the venerable Minneapolis firm of Oppenheimer, Wolff and Donnelly. Since then, the Minneapolis Office of FR has grown conservatively and hires maybe 1-3 summer associates per year.

13) Ballard Spahr. Ballard moved into Minneapolis with the acquisition of the venerable firm of Lindquist & Vennum, which boasted former MN Supreme Court Justice (and pro football hall of famer) Alan Page amongst its illustrious alumni. Ballard is rumored to have chosen Lindquist solely for its strong M&A group Now, not surprisingly, the Minneapolis office of Ballard Spahr is home to one of the top M&A practices in the midwest. Like Fox Rothschild, since its merger Ballard has grown conservatively. Starting salaries at 130k and maybe 1-3 summer associates a year.

14) Larkin Hoffman. Located in the suburb of Bloomington, Larkin has staked itself out as a low-cost but high performing firm with a focus on corporate work. Starting salary below market but a great work-life balance.

Other firms of note:
-Anthony Ostlund Baer & Louwagie (high octane litigation boutique);
-DLA Piper. (Recently moved into the market and has grown to about 10 lawyers. The firm recently poached the strongest restructuring partner in the state, Michael Fisco, and has an active corporate group);
-Best & Flanagan (venerable MN firm with some strong partners, like Tom Heffelfinger, former US Att'y.);
-Barnes & Thornburg (strong litigation and restructuring practice, pays less than market);
-Ciresi Conlin (recently formed by Michael Ciresi, former name partner at Robins Kaplan. Small firm but one of the strongest litigation teams in the cities.)

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:42 am

[Reserved for MS]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:42 am

[Reserved for MO]


User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:42 am

[Reserved for NE]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:42 am

[Reserved for NV]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:43 am

[Reserved for NH]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:43 am

[Reserved for NJ]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:43 am

[Reserved for NM]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:43 am

[Reserved for non-NYC NY]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:44 am


User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:44 am

[Reserved for ND/SD]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:44 am

[Reserved for OH]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:44 am

[Reserved for OK]


User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:45 am

[Reserved for PA]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:45 am

[Reserved for RI]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:45 am

[Reserved for SC]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:45 am

[Reserved for TN]

Woodford
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 09, 2018 7:32 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by Woodford » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:45 am

I'll take a crack at Dallas. Caveat: This is also a jumping off point, feel free to talk me down if I am wrong.

Rather than try to break the market up into a bunch of tiers, I'll organize it this way: 1. National firms 2. Texas Biglaw 3. BigTex firms

I. National firms: Over the past three decades, Dallas has come to be dominated by a number of national satellites (not to the extent that Houston has, but that might change in coming years). All of these firms pay Cravath scale (Jones Day might be Cravath-ish). Of the national firms, I would say that GDC and Sidley are the most well-regarded. Jones Day is right below them, and Winston & Strawn is the wild card. All have sophisticated work, but the work at Gibson and Sidley is probably marginally better than the other two. Partnership prospects at all of these firms are slim to non-existent.
Gibson, Dunn Crutcher: Strongest corporate shop of the national firms, largest deals. Supposedly a decent place to work, but they have some interesting personalities.
Sidley Austin: Raided Weil to create a foothold a few years ago. Seem to be pretty evenly split between lit and corporate, and offer high quality work. Has more of a satellite feel than GDC, but plenty or organic work.
Jones Day: Seems to be on the down slide, office size has decreased by about a third over the past five years. Heard poor things about the culture, but they are pretty busy.
Winston & Strawn: Opened up at the beginning of last year, snagged a ton of high profile litigators from Fish & Richardson, Jones Day, and a few of the BigTex shops. Most litigation-focused of all of the national firms in town. They have a smattering of PE and Tax people they brought over, corporate work seems to be an afterthought for now.
Akin Gump: AG started in Dallas, but D.C. is the crown jewel now and Dallas has been relegated to satellite status. Don't seem to be as busy as the other firms, decreased in size over the last decade, but their bankruptcy and commercial litigation practices are still well regarded.
Weil: Shadow of its former self, focuses mostly on PE now, fairly busy.
There are other national firms in town, including Holland & Knight, K&L Gates, Polsinelli, Baker McKenzie, etc., but they are all much smaller than the above listed firms. I don't know much about any of them individually, they don't hire very many associates, but I know that some of them are well regarded for niche practices (Baker McKenzie's tax group)

II. Texas BigLaw: The Texas Big Three all factor into the Dallas legal landscape, although NRF seems less busy than the other two. All three are very much satellites to their Houston offices and a lot of their work originates in the main office. Haynes and Boone is the largest OG Dallas firm. I'm including Thompson and Knight and Locke Lord into this category as well. All of these firms have national reach, but they handle more middle market deals/matters than the national satellites, They all pay at/near market, but my understanding is that Cravath bonuses are reserved for exceptional billing, and there is a range for those just hitting their targets. Partnership prospects are marginally better than the national satellites, especially at places like HayBoo and T&K that are headquartered in Dallas.
V&E: Very strong corporate practice, but known for having a weird office culture (supposedly similar to BB Houston) and some difficult personalities.
Baker Botts: Their corporate department has been raided lately, and I'm not sure how busy they are, but I believe their litigation practice groups are well regarded. The people seem great, but I have heard the partners are very much into the stuffy old Dallas, Highland Park scene that turns some people off. Doesn't seem true of the associates.
NRF: In a similar situation to BB, their office seems to be becoming more dependent on Houston for work. I have heard good things about the people and the hours.
Haynes and Boone: Very strong reputation in Dallas. Solid mid-market corporate group, but they handle some larger deals as well. Their real estate group seems very busy, and they have a large lit department with a diversity of practice areas. I have heard good things about the culture, but their reputation as a "lifestyle" firm is a relic of years past. The hours are on par with the other big Texas firms.
Thompson & Knight: They are the most O&G-centric of the Dallas firms. They have diversified, and all of their practice groups are well regarded, but energy work is still king. Good culture.
Locke Lord: Well regarded litigation firm with a peculiar culture. I have heard the hours can be brutal.
Gardere and Andrews Kurth fit in here as well, but I don't know how their recent mergers will change their Dallas offices.

III. BigTex: All of these firms are more regional than the firms listed above. The work is almost exclusively middle market. They all pay market or close to it for first-years, but the scale is usually compressed and the bonuses are smaller. Partnerships prospects are better.
Jackson Walker: Great culture. Probably the largest, most respected of the BigTex Dallas firms. Their corporate work isn't all that sophisticated, but they handle a lot of PE and real estate transactions. Solid lit group. The knock on JW is that there are remnants of a "good, old boy" culture.
Winstead: Another of the old-line Dallas firms. They are slightly smaller than JW, but their corporate and finance practices are well regarded.
Strasburger: Once upon a time they were a major player in Dallas, but their office is undergoing quite a few changes, including a merger. Handle a lot of insurance work. I have heard that they have some strong personalities.
Within this tier, there are a lot of firms like Carrington Coleman, Wick Phillips, and Munsch Hardt that might be classified as Midlaw by most definitions, but they are well regarded locally.

There are also a number of strong litigation boutiques in town. Susman Godfrey closed its Dallas office two years ago, but McKool Smith, Figari & Davenport; Lynn, Pinker, Cox (or whatever they are now), and Reid Collins are all very good, and pay well.

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:45 am

[Reserved for UT]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:46 am

[Reserved for VT]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:46 am

[Reserved for VA]

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:46 am

This is not a guide for WA, but does a really good job of discussing the Seattle market, so it'll be an adequate proxy for WA for now.

Seattle/Washington

User avatar
UVA2B
Moderator
Posts: 2893
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:26 pm

Re: 50 Market Survey (Secondary Market Advice Compilation)

Post by UVA2B » Tue Apr 24, 2018 9:46 am

[Reserved for WV]

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Jubo and 6 guests