Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP at a Glance

Uppers

  • “Collegiality”
  • “Good compensation”
  • “Mentoring programs”

Downers

  • “Transparency of decision-making”
  • “Philadelphia-centric management structure”
  • “Bonuses”

The Buzz

  • “Strong IP practice”
  • “Philly”
  • “Local”

About Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP

Drinker Biddle is a national, full-service law firm providing litigation, regulatory, and business solutions to public and private corporations, multinational Fortune 100 companies, and start-ups. Founded and headquartered in Philadelphia, the firm has branched out into major U.S. cities through it's more than 160 year history, including New York, DC, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Chicago.  The firm provides a range of legal services in various industries, including health care, financial services, insurance, energy, retail, education, and pharma and life sciences. Major clients include AT&T, Johnson & Johnson, Kellogg Company, Urban Outfitters, Comcast, Travelers, and Puerto Rico Telephone Company. Drinker Biddle has grown strategically and carefully, for example, in 2012 the firm added an insurance regulatory practice in the New York office and in 2013 launched a dedicated information governance and eDiscovery subsidiary, Tritura.

Historical Footprint

Founder John Christian Bullitt arrived in Philadelphia on Inauguration Day of 1849 and opened the firm as Bullitt and Fairthorne, and although the moniker has changed, over the decades, the firm has been involved with numerous iconic and household names. Drinker has a long history with the University of Pennsylvania. In 1881, partner Samuel Dickson became a member of the University's board of trustees, a position he held until his death in 1915. He also served as counsel to the University, a role the firm held onto for several years after his death and then regained again in 1927 when Henry Drinker became the school's attorney.

In 1871, the firm presided over the creation of Drexel, Morgan and Co.-an investment bank that would later become JP Morgan. Drinker also assisted Georg von Trapp (of the legendary von Trapp Family) in 1939 in sorting out visa issues at Ellis Island and with other legal matters during World War II.

Also during World War II, the firm was called upon to negotiate a compromise on a tax lien and reorganize a shipping yard that would prove critical to the American war effort. In the post-war era, Henry Sawyer III, a veteran of the war who had helped develop the Marshall Plan, represented several clients called before the House Committee on Un-American Activities. The firm stood by the American Civil Liberties Union in defending those accused of having communist sympathies in spite of the firm's strongly conservative leadership.

The firm's contemporary practice is aimed at providing elite services on a national, and, increasingly, international scale. While the firm expands its horizons, it still stays true to its roots.

Leaders in Associate Training

In 2009, while some firms postponed associate start dates or rescinded offers, Drinker Biddle created a groundbreaking training program, now in its eighth year. For the first three months of their employment, incoming associates have no billable obligation-their only "job" is to learn. An interactive curriculum that addresses practical skills and practice-specific experience is followed by apprenticeship opportunities with experienced colleagues on client matters.

Pro Bono Focus

Pro bono work is a strong facet of the firm culture at Drinker Biddle. Pro bono hours are credited the same as billable hours up to 6 percent of the lawyer's actual billable hours for purposes of bonuses and other compensation. The firm, however, has an express policy to grant liberal exceptions to this and nearly all pro bono time is approved in practice.

Associates can get involved in a number of existing programs, as well as bring their own matters of interest to the firm. There is partner supervision on all matters and associates' approved pro bono time is equally as valuable as billable work when considering bonuses and advancement. The firm encourages its lawyers to fight for the causes that interest them and appeal to their sense of justice. It does not screen cases on ideological grounds and works for a variety of causes, such as individuals who cannot afford counsel, organizations fighting for justice in the community and inmates on death row.

IN THE NEWS

June 2016
You Better Recognize!

More than 69 Drinker Biddle lawyers and 13 practice groups recognized as leaders in their fields by Chambers and Partners, a client and peer reference-driven guide to the world's top lawyers

April 2016
Annual Checkup

Drinker Biddle released its annual report, a digital review of the firm's achievements. The Fiscal 2015 Report showcases the firm's highlights, top wins and cases, and recognitions as well as summarizes professional development investments, and contributions by our Public Interest, Diversity, and Women's Leadership committees.

Early 2016
Middle Market Masters

Over the past two years, the firm's national M&A practice has successfully closed over 145 transactions with an aggregate value of more than $15.5 billion. To provide an overview of the middle market transactions advised on by the firm, Drinker Biddle released its 2015 M&A report.

September 2015
Strategic Plan

Drinker Biddle released its strategic plan, which sets the direction of the firm over the next three-to-five years, while addressing the challenges and opportunities confronting the profession and the needs of its clients.

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Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP

One Logan Square, Ste. 2000
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Phone: (215) 988-2700

Stats

  • Employer Type: Private
  • Chairman & CEO: Andrew C. Kassner
  • Executive Partners: Mary Devlin Capizzi, Robert C. Juelke, Michael W. McTigue Jr.
  • Hiring Partner: Joanne C. Lewers
  • Total No. Attorneys 2016: 600

  • Base Salary
    All Offices
    1st year: $160,000
    Summer associate: $3,077/week 

  • Summer Associate Offers
    19 out of 20 (2Ls) (2015)

  • Major Departments & Practices

    Antitrust • Corporate Restructuring • Class Actions • Corporate • Customs and International Trade • Education • Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation • Environment and Energy • Financial Services • Government and Regulatory Affairs • Health Care • Information Governance and eDiscovery • Insurance Litigation and Coverage • Insurance Regulatory and Transactional • Intellectual Property • International • Investment Management • Labor and Employment • Litigation • Lobbying, Policy and Advocacy • Privacy and Data Security • Products Liability and Mass Tort • Real Estate • Retail • Tax • Telecommunications and Mass Media • The Telephone Consumer Protection Act • White Collar Defense and Corporate Investigations 

Major Office Locations

  • Philadelphia, PA (HQ)
  • Albany, NY
  • Chicago, IL
  • Florham Park, NJ
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Milwaukee, WI
  • New York, NY
  • Princeton, NJ
  • San Francisco, CA
  • Washington, DC
  • Wilmington, DE
  • London (Drinker Biddle & Reath (U.K.) LLP)
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