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


  • “Good perks”
  • “Very strong culture of public service”
  • “Cases on the front page”


  • “Compensation could be higher”
  • “Terrible hours”
  • “Lots of big egos”

The Buzz

  • “Litigation powerhouse”
  • “Great people”
  • “Party firm”
  • “Associate grinder”

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.


February 2014

Football Follies
Paul, Weiss represented the National Football League in an investigation into workplace conduct within the Miami Dolphins organization.

Arbitration Achievement
Paul, Weiss represented Citigroup in a $7.5 billion International Centre for Dispute Resolution arbitration brought by the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority. The three-person arbitration panel unanimously decided in Citigroup's favor. The favorable arbitral panel ruling was subsequently upheld by Judge George Daniels of the Southern District of New York and, most recently, by the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

Citigroup Success
Paul, Weiss achieved a victory for Citigroup when the Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed by summary order the U.S. District Court's grant of summary judgment in favor of our clients Citigroup Global Markets Inc. and Citigroup Alternative Investments LLC.

Television Tonight
Paul, Weiss represented Time Warner Cable in its $45.2 billion stock-for-stock merger with Comcast Corporation.

January 2014

Private Equity Fund Fortunes
Paul, Weiss advised Apollo Global Management in connection with the formation of a wide variety of investment funds and accounts, most notably the formation of its latest private equity fund.

June 2013

Equality for Edith
Paul, Weiss client Edith Windsor won a landmark ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court in her challenge of the constitutionality of section three of the Defense of Marriage Act. In a 5-4 decision, the Court, per Justice Kennedy, ruled that the federal government cannot discriminate against married lesbian and gay couples for the purposes of determining federal benefits and protections.

- Show Less + Show Full Description

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP

1285 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10019
Phone: (212) 373-3000
Fax: (212) 757-3990


  • Employer Type: Private
  • Firm Chair: Brad S. Karp
  • Valerie E. Radwaner: Deputy Chair
  • Hiring Partners: Daniel J. Toal and RT. Robert Zochowski, Jr.
  • Total No. Attorneys 2014: 854

  • Employment Contact
    Pamela N. Davidson
    Chief Recruitment Officer
    Phone: (212) 373-3000
    Fax: (212) 757-3990
    E-mail: Recruiting contacts for all locations at

  • Base Salary
    New York, NY; Washington, DC
    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
    8th year: $280,000
    9th year: $290,000
    Summer associate: $3,100/week

  • Summer Associate Offers
    119 out of 119 (2013)

  • 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
  • Tokyo
  • Toronto
- Show Less + Show More

Become a Vault Basic Member

Complete your Vault Profile and get seen by top employers