Mayer Brown LLP at a Glance


  • “Excellent compensation”
  • “International footprint”
  • “Cutting-edge substantive work”


  • “Billable hours requirement is too high”
  • “Lack of communication by management”
  • “Little formal training after first year”

The Buzz

  • “Prestigious”
  • “Great appellate shop”
  • “Clerkship-obsessed”
  • “Chicago’s second-best”

About Mayer Brown LLP

Mayer Brown is a leading international law firm with offices in key business centers across the Americas, Europe and Asia. Serving a majority of the Fortune 100, the firm is renowned for top-flight corporate, finance and appellate work.

Giddy Up

It was the summer of 1879, and a Chicago court was hearing arguments about the sale of a lame horse. The defendant was David Mayer, a wealthy local merchant. His attorney was his younger brother Levy, who had just graduated from Yale Law School. The Mayers lost. They appealed to a higher court, as did their adversary: a 30-year-old, self-taught Czech lawyer named Adolf Kraus. The Mayers felt they should have prevailed; Kraus believed he was entitled to $200, not the $25 he'd been awarded.

The appeal ended in a settlement two years later, under most unusual circumstances: the younger Mayer had impressed Kraus in the courtroom, so Kraus asked him to form a partnership. Each man contributed $100 to satisfy the pending claim and erase any conflict of interest. They quickly discovered that they worked well together.

During the early decades of the twentieth century Mayer and Kraus' Chicago-based firm grew, adding attorneys and partners, and became known for its work in some of the era's most notable cases. The firm represented owners of the Iroquois Theater in Chicago when a 1903 fire killed 600 people (many exits were blocked because the doors only opened inward). The theater owners were exonerated, but the outcome of the case resulted in tougher fire codes that were adopted in municipalities across the nation. By 1970, the firm was called Mayer, Brown & Platt, and in the ensuing decades it doubled in size, opening offices throughout the United States and in Europe.

A Transatlantic Merger

In 2002, Mayer, Brown & Platt merged with U.K.-based Rowe & Maw. The latter firm dated back to 1895, and at the time of the combination, it boasted 250 attorneys and locations in London, Paris and Frankfurt. A streamlined moniker was introduced in 2007 as the firm became known as Mayer Brown, and the following year it merged again, joining forces with JSM, one of the largest firms in Asia. This brought the Mayer Brown brand to major hubs in the region, including Hong Kong, Shanghai, Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Guangzhou and Singapore (in Asia, it's officially known as Mayer Brown JSM).

Appellate Expertise

Although Mayer Brown's practices cover everything from banking to real estate, it's particularly well-known for its appellate work. In fact, it was one of the first firms to establish a dedicated Supreme Court practice, which it formed in the early 1980s with recruits from the solicitor general's office.

Mayer Brown's attorneys and practices have been recognized by Chambers, the Financial Times, BTI Consulting's Client Service Performance Survey and IFLR for their work around the globe. Its clients hail from nearly two dozen sectors, including aviation, business and technology sourcing, energy, health care, infrastructure, mining, rail, real estate, shipping, sports and entertainment, telecommunications, construction, e-commerce, hospitality, information technology, chemicals, private investment and outsourcing.


July 2014

Team Tax
Mayer Brown was named Tax Controversy Team of the Year in the Legal 500 United States Awards 2014. "Mayer Brown is 'among the best' and fields a large team…dedicated exclusively to tax controversy and transfer pricing," said Legal 500 and its sources in the 2014 U.S. edition. "The firm's extensive experience spans the full gamut of controversy work, from administrative appeals to litigation in the trial court and at appellate court level."

April 2014

BTI "Brand Elite"
Mayer Brown was ranked sixth among 26 law firms with a substantially better brand than all other law firms in the BTI Brand Elite 2014: Client Perceptions of the Best-Branded Law Firms. Published by The BTI Consulting Group, the report is based on feedback from more than 300 interviews with in-house counsel at the world's largest organizations that measured "top of mind recognition" of nearly 450 law firms. The report also ranked Mayer Brown as a "Best Brand Builder," one of only 19 firms with outstanding upward trajectory in brand out of the 650 law firms serving large clients.

January 2014

Moving on Up
In 2014, 22 Mayer Brown lawyers in five practices and 11 offices in the Americas, Europe and Asia joined the rank of partner through internal promotions earned by superior legal work and client service, which long have been hallmarks of the firm's partners. Mayer Brown takes great pride in each class of newly promoted partners because they represent the firm's ability to grow from within and bring new vitality and enthusiasm to the partnership.

December 2013

Equality All-Stars
Mayer Brown received a perfect 100 score in the 2014 Human Rights Campaign Foundation's annual Corporate Equality Index (CEI) and earned the "Best Places to Work for LGBT Equality" distinction. The CEI serves as a tool to rate American businesses on their treatment of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees and their families, and on their demonstration of corporate commitment to LGBT equality.

November 2013

Always Innovating
For the fourth consecutive year, Mayer Brown was ranked among the most innovative U.S. law firms by the Financial Times. In the 2013 edition of its annual special report, "US Innovative Lawyers," the publication awarded Mayer Brown "Standout" and "Commended" rankings in the Finance category and a "Commended" ranking in the Litigation & Dispute Resolution category.

The Best, 187 Times
Mayer Brown was once again one of the top-performing law firms in the annual ranking of "Best Law Firms" by US News/Best Lawyers. The firm received 36 national tier one rankings and 89 metropolitan tier one rankings in the 2014 edition. Overall, the firm was ranked in 187 national and metropolitan categories. In addition, US News/Best Lawyers named Mayer Brown the "Firm of the Year" in the Appellate Law category for the second consecutive year. These outstanding rankings demonstrate high client satisfaction with the legal services Mayer Brown lawyers deliver across a broad range of practice areas and geographies.

July 2013

They've Got the World on a String
For the third year in a row, Mayer Brown was named to Law360's "Global 20' list that recognizes the law firms that did the most substantial, complex and diverse global work and had the greatest worldwide presence during the previous year. Law360 said Mayer Brown continued to "flex its international muscle" and cited the firm's handling of transactions in the billions of dollars in the US, Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East, many of them involving cross-border teams of Mayer Brown lawyers.

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Mayer Brown LLP

71 South Wacker Drive
Chicago, IL 60606
Phone: (312) 782-0600


  • Employer Type: Private
  • Chairman: Paul Theiss
  • Managing Partner: Kenneth S. Geller
  • Chicago Hiring Partners: Debra Bogo-Ernst & J. Bradley Keck
  • Total No. Attorneys 2014: 1,600

  • Employment Contact
    Erin Boswell
    Attorney Recruitment & Marketing Coordinator
    Email: Chicago
    Attorney Recruitment Administrator
    Email: Houston
    Lindsey Dusek
    Attorney Development & Recruitment Manager
    Email: Los Angeles
    Attorney Recruitment Manager
    Email: New York
    Attorney Recruitment Administrator
    Email: Palo Alto
    Attorney Recruitment Manager
    Email: Washington, DC
    Suzanne Alderete
    Attorney Development & Recruitment Manager

  • Base Salary
    Charlotte, NC; Chicago, IL; Los Angeles, CA; New York, NY; Palo Alto, CA; Washington, DC; Houston, TX
    1st year: $160,000
    2nd year: $170,000
    3rd year: $185,000
    4th year: $210,000
    5th year: $230,000
    6th year: $250,000
    7th year: $265,000
    Summer associate: $3,077/week (Charlotte: $2,750/week)  

  • Summer Associate Offers
    59 out of 59 (2013)

  • Major Departments & Practices
    Banking & Finance
    Corporate & Securities
    Employment & Benefits
    Financial Services Regulatory & Enforcement
    Government/Global Trade
    Intellectual Property
    Litigation & Dispute Resolution
    Real Estate
    Restructuring, Bankruptcy & Insolvency
    Wealth Management: Trusts, Estates & Foundations

Major Office Locations

  • Charlotte, NC
  • Chicago, IL
  • Houston, TX
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • New York, NY
  • Palo Alto, CA
  • Washington, DC
  • Bangkok
  • Beijing
  • Brussels
  • Düsseldorf
  • Frankfurt
  • Guangzhou
  • Hanoi
  • Ho Chi Minh City
  • Hong Kong
  • London
  • Paris
  • Rio de Janeiro*
  • Sao Paulo*
  • Shanghai
  • Singapore
  • *Tauil & Chequer Advogados in association with Mayer Brown
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