Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP at a Glance


  • “The people are very friendly”
  • “Interesting, complex work”
  • “True commitment to pro bono”


  • “Lack of transparency”
  • “The grueling hours”
  • “Dry subject matter”

The Buzz

  • “Excellent litigation shop”
  • “Progressive”
  • “Overworked”
  • “Robot factory”

About Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP

For decades, Paul, Weiss has valiantly defended the coffers and reputations of some of the world's largest financial institutions and companies. Though perhaps best recognized for its courtroom dazzle, the firm's prolific corporate and restructuring departments more than hold their own. The firm is also known for its expertise in telecom and entertainment law.

Diverse to the Core

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison dates to pre-WWI New York, where Samuel William Weiss and partners opened a practice to handle commercial law matters for other members of the local Jewish business community. Back then, Jewish attorneys struggled to find acceptance in Gentile firms, so many formed firms of their own. Weiss's son Louis took a different tack-after graduating from Columbia Law he went into business with a classmate, John F. Wharton, who was a Protestant. It was one of the earliest instances of an American law firm where Jews and Gentiles worked as equals. Eventually Weiss & Wharton merged with the firm Louis' father had helped start.

The firm's focus on diversity continued. Paul, Weiss was the first New York firm to hire a black associate and was the first major New York law firm to make a woman partner. The words of longtime partner Simon H. Rifkind remain entrenched in the firm's statement of principles: "We are sensitive to the fact that we practice in New York City, which is a pluralistic community and the major international and financial center of the Western world. We believe in maintaining, by affirmative efforts, a membership of partners and associates reflecting a wide variety of religious, political, ethnic, and social backgrounds, characteristic of that community." Paul, Weiss continues to make serious efforts to hire and retain a diverse mix of lawyers and support staff through the work of the firm's Diversity Committee and programs such as its annual Diversity Networking event.

With Liberals and Justice for All

From its earliest days, Paul, Weiss was associated with progressive politics and civil rights. Well-known First Amendment lawyer Walter Pollak joined the firm in 1936, after having argued some of the infamous "Scottsboro Boys" trials (which inspired Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird) before the United States Supreme Court. Named partners Lloyd Garrison and Randolph Paul joined in the mid-1940s. Paul was a tax attorney who'd previously worked at the Treasury, and Garrison-the great-grandson of an abolitionist-stood up for clients like Arthur Miller, J. Robert Oppenheimer, and Langston Hughes during the McCarthy era.

The last name partner to join the masthead was Judge Simon Rifkind, who came on board in 1950 after serving as a federal district court judge and working in the Roosevelt administration to craft New Deal legislation. He stayed with the firm until his death in 1995 and is credited with helping to establish the firm as a litigation powerhouse.

Trial Size Gets Huge

The firm grew through the 1960s and 1970s, expanding from litigation, tax, and entertainment law to include corporate clients. It continued to be involved in the kinds of cases that defined their times, from the earliest environmental lawsuits to the "salad oil scandal," in which major financial institutions, including American Express, got caught up in a fraudulent loan scheme involving a New Jersey vegetable oil company. In the 1980s, the firm developed a white-collar defense practice-star attorney Arthur Liman defended corporate raider Carl Icahn, mutual-fund embezzler Robert Vesco and junk bond dealer Michael Milken.

Today Paul, Weiss is smaller than many of its rivals, but it remains among the top 50 firms in the U.S. by gross revenue. It has forged ahead during the financial crisis, representing Bear Stearns and major client Citigroup in litigation and regulatory matters.


May 2016
Enjoying Better

Paul, Weiss client Time Warner Cable (TWC) closed its $78.7 billion merger with Charter Communications. This historic transaction represents the culmination of a three-year roller coaster ride. Paul, Weiss's relationship with the client began in the early 1970s and the firm has been involved in the company's most transformative transactions and litigations over the past 45 years, including Warner Communications' contested $14 billion merger with Time Inc., which created Time Warner Inc. (TW); defeating Paramount Communications' attempt to enjoin the Warner/Time Inc. merger; prevailing in a 2000 trial regarding TW's role as licensing agent for the National Hockey League and the NHL Players Association; TW's $17.9 billion joint acquisition, with Comcast, of the cable properties of Adelphia Communications; TWC's multibillion-dollar spin-off from TW; defeating (in arbitration and at trial) carriage access complaints against TWC brought by MASN and Wealth TV; and TWC's $3 billion acquisition of Insight Communications.

April 2016
One Person, One Vote

Paul, Weiss client The Brennan Center filed an amicus curiae brief analyzing apportionment throughout the nation's history and arguing that apportionment on the basis of total population is rooted deeply in the Constitution's vision of representative democracy and guarantee of equal protection to all persons. Invoking the principle of "One Person, One Vote", the Supreme Court of the United States issued an 8-0 decision in Evenwel v. Abbott, upholding the right of the states to apportion state legislative seats on the basis of total population, rather than eligible voters.

Tackling NFL's Concussion Litigation

Paul, Weiss client The National Football League obtained a significant victory in April 2016 when the Third Circuit issued an opinion affirming the district court's approval of the landmark class action settlement of the NFL Concussion Injury Litigation, which resolved the claims of a class of over 20,000 retired football players who alleged that the NFL failed to inform them of and protect them from the long-term risks of concussions.

September 2015
Get Real… Estate

Paul, Weiss client EXOR S.A. completed the sale of Cushman & Wakefield to a group of private equity investors led by TPG and its portfolio company, DTZ Worldwide. The combined company, which will do business under the Cushman & Wakefield name, will be one of the world's largest real estate services firms, with a combined total of $5 billion in revenue, 43,000 employees, and more than 4.3 billion square feet under management. The transaction valued Cushman & Wakefield at approximately $2.042 billion, generating net cash proceeds of approximately $1.278 billion to EXOR for its controlling interest.

August 2015
Kicked Across the Pond

Paul, Weiss secured the dismissal of a putative class action against firm client Citigroup brought on behalf of purchasers of 26 Citigroup Euro Note offerings traded on exchanges in Luxembourg and Denmark, alleging $9 billion in damages. In a succession of amended complaints, plaintiffs asserted claims under U.K. and Luxembourg law and alleged that defendants made material misrepresentations relating to Citigroup's exposure to and valuation of subprime-related assets between 2005 and 2009. The federal district court granted Citigroup's motion to dismiss on the ground of forum non conveniens, in favor of litigation in England, and subsequently denied plaintiffs' motion to alter or amend the judgment to impose certain conditions on the dismissal. In England, plaintiffs will be subject to decidedly less favorable rules regarding class actions and attorneys' fees. The district court's decision was affirmed by the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in August 2015.

July 2015
Too Soon, Biosimilar

Paul, Weiss won on behalf of client Amgen, Inc., the world's largest independent biotechnology company, in an action against Sandoz for patent infringement, conversion, and unfair competition over the first biosimilar application filed and approved by the U.S. FDA under the pathway established by the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act of 2009 ("BPCIA"). Sandoz's product, Zarxio, is a biosimilar version of Amgen's product, Neupogen, which helps decrease the incidence of infection in patients receiving anti-cancer treatments. The case was the first one to address the interpretation of the BPCIA, an issue of critical importance to the biotechnology industry. On July 21, 2015, the Federal Circuit agreed with our interpretation, holding that a biosimilar applicant cannot launch its product until at least 180 days after it has received FDA approval and provided a so-called "notice of commercial marketing" under 42 U.S.C. § 262(l)(8)(A), and granted Amgen an injunction preventing Sandoz's launch until 180 days after Sandoz gave operative notice following FDA licensure of Zarxio.

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Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP

1285 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10019-6064
Phone: (212) 373-3000


  • Employer Type: Private
  • Firm Chair: Brad S. Karp
  • Deputy Chair: Valerie E. Radwaner
  • Hiring Partners: Catherine Nyarady & T. Robert Zochowski, Jr.
  • Total No. Attorneys 2016: 949

  • Base Salary
    New York, NY; Washington, DC
    1st year: $180,000
    2nd year: $190,000
    3rd year: $210,000
    4th year: $235,000
    5th year: $260,000
    6th year: $280,000
    7th year: $300,000
    8th year: $315,000
    9th year+: $325,000
    Summer associate: $3,500/week

  • Summer Associate Offers
    141 out of 141 (2Ls) (2015)

  • Major Departments & Practices
    Bankruptcy & Corporate Reorganization
    Communications & Technology
    Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation
    Intellectual Property
    Personal Representation
    Real Estate

Major Office Locations

  • New York, NY (HQ)
  • Washington, DC
  • Wilmington, DE
  • Beijing
  • Hong Kong
  • London
  • Toronto
  • Tokyo
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