About Ballard Spahr LLP

Growing from an influential Philadelphia base to more than a dozen offices throughout the U.S., Ballard Spahr has been traditionally strong in litigation, finance and real estate. The firm has scores of lawyers and dozens of practice areas and has earned accolades for its pro bono work from American Lawyer and for its focus on diversity from MultiCultural Law and the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Philadelphia Breeds a Nationwide Network

In 1885, Philadelphia lawyer Ellis Ballard joined a law firm helmed by Rufus Shapley; in 1904, fellow UPenn law school alum Boyd Lee Spahr joined the practice. After Shapley's death and the welcoming of several other partners, the firm became Ballard Spahr Andrews & Ingersoll in the 1930s (the firm's name officially changed to Ballard Spahr in 2009). Ballard himself represented various corporations, most notably serving as the general counsel for the Philadelphia Rapid Transit Company until he retired in 1931 and handed representation of the trolleys to his son, Frederic Ballard.

Although the firm has maintained its roots in Philadelphia, the opening of a Washington, DC, office in 1978 marked the beginning of decades of expansion beyond the home of the Liberty Bell. In 1981, Ballard Spahr created its first gateway to the west by opening an office in Denver, followed by offices in Salt Lake City, Phoenix, Las Vegas and Los Angeles. The firm has also sought to consolidate its grip on the mid-Atlantic corridor by opening offices in Baltimore, New Jersey, Wilmington, Bethesda and New York. With the opening of a white-collar crime defense-centered office in San Diego, the acquisition of Needle & Rosenberg-a small IP Atlanta firm-and the entrance in 2017 into Boulder-a hub for innovation and entrepreneurial leadership-the firm now has 15 offices.

While Ballard Spahr is a full-service firm, about two-fifths of its attorneys practice within its litigation group.  Real estate has also proved a major profit generator for the firm, as well as a large and diverse one, ranging from luxury condominium and hotel deals to representing industrial warehouse interests. The firm has also used its construction expertise to advise in the creation of Kansas City's Nuclear Security Campus for the Nuclear Security Administration.

A Core Financial Strategy

The firm jumped to provide advisory services to financial clients as a result of the financial regulations coming out of DC starting in 2010, representing big finance names like PNC Bank, Chase, Citibank, TD Bank and Sallie Mae. The firm has also done business with Comcast, which snatched up former Ballard Spahr chair David Cohen as its Executive Vice President.

Brotherly Love, Indeed

Perhaps Ballard Spahr's most famous attorney is Governor Ed Rendell, who has returned to the firm after serving two terms as mayor of Philadelphia, as head of the National Democratic Committee, and-with a stint with Ballard Spahr in between-as Pennsylvania's governor from 2003 to 2011.

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Ballard Spahr LLP

1735 Market Street
51st Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19103-7599
Phone: (215) 665-8500


  • Employer Type: Private
  • Managing Partner: Mark S. Stewart
  • Hiring Partner: Jason A. Leckerman
  • Total No. Attorneys 2017: 561

  • Base Salary
    1st year: $135,000 (higher for IP)
    Summer associate: $2,600/week Baltimore
    1st year: $125,000
    Summer associate: $2,400/week Delaware, New Jersey, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, San Diego, and Washington, DC
    1st year: $150,000
    Summer associate: $2,900/week Denver and Phoenix
    1st year: $120,000
    Summer associate: $2,300/week Las Vegas and Salt Lake City
    1st year: $115,000
    Summer associate: $2,200/week New York
    1st year: $160,000
    Summer associate: $3,100/week

  • Summer Associate Offers
    17 out of 18 (2Ls only) (2016)

  • Major Departments & Practices
    Antitrust • Appellate • Bankruptcy, Reorganization and Capital Recovery • Business and Finance (EB-5 • Investment Management • Mergers and Acquisitions/Private Equity • Securities • Transactional Finance) • Class Action Litigation • Commercial Litigation • Consumer Financial Services • E-Discovery and Data Management • Emerging Growth and Private Capital • Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation • Energy and Project Finance • Environment and Natural Resources • Family Wealth Management • Government Relations, Regulatory Affairs and Contracting • Health Care • Higher Education • Housing (FHA and GSE Financing • Government-Assisted Housing • Housing Bonds • Tax Credits) • Insurance • Intellectual Property • Intellectual Property Litigation • Labor and Employment • Life Sciences and Technology • Litigation • Media and Entertainment Law • Mortgage Banking • Municipal Securities Regulation and Enforcement • P3/Infrastructure • Privacy and Data Security • Product Liability and Mass Tort • Professional Liability • Public Finance • Real Estate • Real Estate and Construction Litigation • Real Estate Development and Complex Transactions (Construction • Eminent Domain • Leasing • Mixed-Use Development and Condominiums • Real Estate Tax • Zoning and Land Use) • Real Estate Finance and Capital Markets (Commercial Loan Servicing • CMBS Loan Origination • Distressed Real Estate • Insurance Company Institutional Investments • Private Equity Real Estate) • REITs • Resort, Hospitality, and Timeshare • Securities Enforcement and Corporate Governance Litigation • Sports • Tax (Exempt Organizations) • White Collar Defense/Internal Investigations

Major Office Locations

  • Atlanta, GA • Baltimore, MD • Bethesda, MD • Boulder, CO • Wilmington, DE • Denver, CO • Las Vegas, NV • Los Angeles, CA • Cherry Hill, NJ • New York, NY • Philadelphia, PA • Phoenix, AZ • Salt Lake City, UT • San Diego, CA • Washington, DC