Pepper Hamilton LLP at a Glance


  • “Collegiality is amazing”
  • “Early, substantive responsibility”
  • “Opportunities to thrive”


  • ”Uneven workloads”
  • “Flawed evaluation process”
  • “Bonuses could be higher”

The Buzz

  • “Great corporate department”
  • “Elite”
  • “Local counsel”
  • “Average large firm”

About Pepper Hamilton LLP

Pepper Hamilton was founded 125 years ago in the City of Brotherly Love, where it strictly remained for 80 years. While it still maintains more of an East Coast presence, the firm has grown to over 500 attorneys in offices across the United States, including California offices in Los Angeles, Silicon Valley and Orange County.

Some Pepper with Your Con Law?

Pepper Hamilton traces its roots back to 1890, when George Wharton Pepper and Bayard Henry opened a two-man shop in Philadelphia. From the start, George Pepper was an intellectual force. An essay he wrote in his final year of law school would be cited 50 years later by Justice Brandeis in the famous (or infamous, to 1Ls) case of Erie Railroad v. Tompkins. Pepper was such a dominant force in matters of constitutional law that he not only successfully argued a large portion of The New Deal was unconstitutional, but the court quoted his oral argument in full in its opinion.

Capitol Cronies

In 1954, the firm merged with Evans, Bayard, and Frick, a firm founded by another mental giant: John Johnson. Johnson was the son of a blacksmith, and after a few years of working as a document clerk at a law firm, he passed the Pennsylvania bar, never having attended college or law school. Johnson would go on to handle over 10,000 cases in his career, with some 2,000 before the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court and a more-than-impressive 168 before the United States Supreme Court. Among Johnson's clients were Standard Oil and U.S. Steel.

In 1955, after being with the firm for 65 years, George Pepper stepped down as chairman and was succeed by John Hamilton. After graduating from law school, Hamilton was elected to the Kansas House of Representatives, eventually rising to the rank of Speaker of the House and also chairman of the Kansas Republican Party. In 1936, Hamilton gained a prestigious position on the national scene, serving as chairman of the Republican National Committee. After retiring from politics, he moved to Philadelphia and put his name on the Pepper Hamilton shingle. One of Hamilton's most noteworthy cases was the defense of Harry Gold, the confessed courier for Soviet spies Julius and Ethel Rosenberg.

Some of Pepper Hamilton's notable cases in more recent times include the Dover, PA school district "intelligent design" dispute dubbed Scopes II; precedent-setting defense rulings on behalf of drug and device manufacturers; big wins in patent litigation before the International Trade Commission; obtaining defense jury verdicts-twice in three years-in a long-running antitrust case for Mack Trucks; and the representation of several Guantanamo Bay detainees.

Paving the Way

Pepper Hamilton was founded 125 years ago in the City of Brotherly Love, where it strictly remained for 80 years. While it still maintains more of an East Coast presence, the firm has grown to over 500 attorneys in offices across the United States, including California offices in Los Angeles, Silicon Valley and Orange County.


April 2016
Chief Client Ambassador

Pepper announced that Nina M. Gussack would take on a newly-created position of "Chief Client Ambassador." Ms. Gussack began her new role by meeting clients in the life sciences space-pharmaceutical, manufacturing and medical device companies-to learn their legal and business challenges and will ultimately go firm-wide with other practices. Ms. Gussack is the past chair of Pepper's Health Effects Litigation Practice Group and the past chair of the firm's Executive Committee.

January 2016
Moving on Up

Pepper announced that seven attorneys have been elected to partnership: Tambry L. Bradford, John P. Falco, Michael A. Kadlec, Gregory D. Len, Stephanie L. Pindyck-Costantino, Nicholas A. Stawasz, and William M. Taylor. In addition, two attorneys have been elevated to of counsel: George S. Haight, IV and Judith L. O'Grady. All were promoted from within the firm.

November 2015
Unable to Label

Pepper's pharmaceutical and medical device litigation practice defeated state law claims in multidistrict litigation (MDL) in a ruling involving product labels. The MDL accused multiple pharmaceutical manufacturers including Eli Lilly & Co. of failing to warn patients of pancreas problems from Type 2 diabetes drugs. However, a federal judge found that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration would have not approved the new warning labels and dismissed 750 failure-to-warn suits. Thus, the federal agency's finding on the matter preempted state law failure-to-warn claims and shielded the pharmaceutical manufacturers from such claims.

October 2015
Protecting Civil Liberties

Pepper was honored with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Pennsylvania's 2015 Civil Libertarian Award. The award is to honor Pepper in recognition of the firm's significant contributions to the ACLU in serving as cooperating attorneys for a number of important cases in recent years, most significantly, in Briggs v. Norristown, which not only protected the rights of Norristown, PA resident Lakisha Briggs, but led to the repeal of Norristown's controversial "nuisance" ordinance which punished domestic violence victims who requested police assistance.

September 2015
Big Deals in the Big Apple

Pepper's New York office lent a hand in two big deals this past September. In the first transaction, Pepper provided legal counsel to Applied DNA Sciences Inc., a NASDAQ Capital Market-listed provider of DNA-based anti-counterfeiting technology, product genotyping services and product authentication solutions, in its acquisition of the assets of Vandalia Research Inc., a privately held company. In the second transaction, Pepper provided legal counsel to Techniks Industries, a leading provider of industrial cutting tools and tool holders in North America, and Tenex Capital Management, a private equity firm that invests in middle-market companies across diverse industries including industrials, manufacturing, and health and business services, in Techniks's acquisition by Audax Private Equity, an alternative asset management firm specializing in investments in middle market companies, from Tenex.

Philly's Major Tech Deals

Pepper played a role in two of the most significant transactions in the recent history of the Philadelphia technology community. The first transaction involved Pepper's representation of iPipeline, a provider of cloud-based software solutions for the life insurance industry and one of the most prominent tech companies in the Philadelphia region, in its sale to San Francisco private equity firm Thoma Bravo, LLC. The second transaction involved Pepper's representation of wealth-planning software maker eMoney Advisor in its acquisition by mutual fund behemoth Fidelity Investments.

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Pepper Hamilton LLP

3000 Two Logan Square
Eighteenth & Arch Streets
Philadelphia, PA 19103-2799
Phone: (215) 981-4000


  • Employer Type: Private
  • Managing Partner: Thomas J. Cole, Jr.
  • Hiring Partner: Daniel J. Boland
  • Total No. Attorneys 2016: 525

  • Base Salary
    Berwyn, PA; Philadelphia, PA; Princeton, NJ; Wilmington, DE
    1st year: $150,000
    Summer associate (2L): $2,900/week Boston, MA; Los Angeles, CA; New York, NY; Orange County, CA; Silicon Valley, CA
    1st year: $160,000
    Summer associate (2L): $3,100/week

  • Summer Associate Offers
    16 out of 17 (2Ls) (2015)

  • Major Departments & Practices
    Commercial Department:
    •   Corporate and Securities (M&A, Private Equity, Public Company Compliance, Venture Capital, etc.)
    •   Corporate Restructuring and Bankruptcy
    •   Employee Benefits
    •   Financial Services
    •   Life Sciences
    •   Real Estate
    •   Tax
    •   Trusts and Estates
    Intellectual Property Department:
    •   Intellectual Property Litigation
    •   Intellectual Property Transactions and Rights Management
    Litigation and Dispute Resolution Department:
    •   Commercial Litigation
    •   Construction
    •   Environmental and Energy
    •   Health Effects Litigation
    •   Labor and Employment
    •   White Collar Litigation and Investigations

Major Office Locations

  • Philadelphia, PA (HQ)
  • Berwyn, PA
  • Boston, MA
  • Detroit, MI
  • Harrisburg, PA
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • New York, NY
  • Orange County, CA
  • Pittsburgh, PA
  • Princeton, NJ
  • Silicon Valley, CA
  • Washington, DC
  • Wilmington, DE
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