Highlights Arnold & Porter LLP
Spanning more than 65 years of practice in Washington, DC and having eight other offices in the US and Europe, Arnold & Porter LLP has earned broad respect across a wide range of industries and sectors as a preeminent international law firm. Our global reach and experience allow us to work across geographic, cultural, technological, and ideological borders, serving clients whose business needs require US, EU, or cross-border regulatory, litigation, and transactional services. Our recent combination with prestigious San Francisco firm Howard Rice doubled our California presence. And our award-winning pro bono tradition stretches back to the McCarthy era, when firm co-founders Abe Fortas and Thurman Arnold defeated a laundry list of erroneous "Communist espionage" charges against Owen Lattimore. Today, the cases are different, but the principled commitment is the same.
High Time at the High Court
Arnold & Porter has a distinguished Appellate practice that’s been recognized on National Law Journal’s Appellate Hot List as one that has “amassed precedent-setting victories in the US Supreme Court, the circuit courts of appeal and state appellate courts and that have demonstrated impressive track records over time.”
In 2011-2012, the firm represented clients in five Supreme Court cases (four wins, one pending). For its work on a landmark First Amendment case -- Sorrell v. IMS Health, Inc., 131 S. Ct. 2653 (2011), the only case decided during the relevant time period for this submission, Arnold & Porter was named “Health Care Group of the Year” by Law360.
The practice made news outside the courtroom when appellate team member Anthony J. Franze’s novel The Last Justice, a legal thriller set in the high court, was published in February 2012. The Legal Times said “Franze’s page-turner is downright respectful of the Court, scrupulously accurate in its details about the institution’s inner working. In a surprising way, the book reflects Franze’s admiration for the Court.”
Trusted for Antitrust/Competition
Our Antitrust/Competition practice is recognized worldwide for its breadth, depth, and record of excellence. Global Competition Review's "GCR Global Elite" 2012 ranked our practice as fourth worldwide. Chambers USA 2012 ranked us one of the top Antitrust practices in the nation, including awarding us the “Chambers Award for Excellence in Antitrust” in 2012. The head of our global practice last year was named one of "The Decade's Most Influential Lawyers" by The National Law Journal and was twice honored as the leading competition lawyer in the world by the International Who's Who of Business Lawyers.
With credentials like this, it’s no wonder Arnold & Porter -- with more than 80 attorneys in the US and Europe -- is considered a go-to firm for the full range of antitrust and trade regulation matters. Notable cases include representation of GE in connection with its joint venture with Comcast with respect to NBC Universal, valued at $30 billion and representation of Kraft Foods in its hostile acquisition of Cadbury plc.
To quote a client in Chambers and Partners: "This practice is in a league of its own: We particularly value its relationships with the regulatory agencies and have found it particularly reasonable and flexible with regard to its fees."
IP Around the Globe
The world’s leading companies turn to us when dealing with complex legal and public policy challenges to their IP rights around the globe. Our international practice addresses emerging issues in both new media law and the life sciences industry. We were named in 2012 to the National Law Journal’s inaugural Intellectual Property Hot List as one of 20 firms that “excel in providing patent, copyright and trademark legal services.”
Over the past two years, we’ve fortified our IP practice by adding nearly a dozen senior attorneys with substantial patent litigation and technology practices. The team is positioned to represent clients with an arsenal of technical and scientific knowledge in the information technology, software, hardware, medical device, pharmaceutical, and life sciences sectors.
In May 2011, following six years of litigation, Arnold & Porter won a major competition/IP case challenging VeriSign Inc.’s operation of the .com and .net Internet registries, in CFIT v. ICANN. The case was closely watched as raising issues important to the operation of the Internet, and decided important questions of IP and competition law. In another case, the firm represented Boston Scientific Corporation (BSC) in a series of patent infringement actions brought against the BSC’s drug-coated stents by Johnson & Johnson.
Nice firms finish first
FORTUNE magazine has included Arnold & Porter's name on its annual list of "100 Best Companies to Work For" eight times. Other best-of lists Arnold & Porter frequents include The Human Rights Campaign's list of LGBT-friendly workplaces (with a perfect 100 rating every time), Working Mother's "100 Best Companies for Working Mothers, Yale Law Women Top 10 Family Friendly Law Firms, and Corporate Board Member’s “America’s Best Corporate Law Firms” Arnold & Porter has also received numerous awards for its diversity efforts from The Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA).
Arnold & Porter has enjoyed a progressive, family-friendly reputation that was greatly helped by the opening of the country's first in-firm child care center in 1995. With weekend and backup hours in addition to daily availability and a full-time preschool program, the center remains the "gold standard" of law firm child care. Covington & Burling is the only other top-10 firm in DC to offer full-time child care.
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Corporate America is finally showing the Earth some love, and Arnold & Porter is joining in. The firm kicked off its Green Office Initiative in 2007, implementing a plan to reduce consumption of paper, energy and transportation firm-wide. Significant changes range from a switch to recycled paper for printing and copying (on printers set to double-side printing), as well as electronic holiday cards, to carbon offsets for business travel, to installing air pumps in employee parking lots (under-inflated tires, as Mario Andretti will tell you, are not only dangerous, but also hurt fuel economy). The driving force behind the Green Office Initiative is DC partner Jonathan Martel, who was previously at the Office of General Counsel of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and focuses his practice on Clean Air Act issues. For him, the key to making BigLaw environmentally friendly is "built on peer pressure." So, c'mon, everyone's doing it.
Arnold & Porter is also setting an example for others by collaborating with the ABA and EPA to develop what they call an "Eco Challenge," encouraging law firms to take steps toward a more environmentally friendly practice of law. Furthermore, it is the first major U.S. law firm to form a partnership with Carbonfund.org in order to support carbon reduction projects and other sustainable business practices.
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"Grades," begins one insider, before repeating "grades" twice more, just in case you didn't catch it the first time. A senior associate agrees that "the firm looks for candidates at the top of the class who are willing to work very hard." Adds a veteran associate, "We have very high standards, but nothing is a sure bet. The firm really values work experience when hiring associates." A midlevel notes that "like most large law firms, grades and law school are probably the two most important factors when considering a candidate for an on-campus interview and subsequent callback."
One junior associate details the selection process, “We are looking for sharp people who get along well with others." A corporate source asserts, "The firm is looking for people who have the ambition and potential to be great at what they do." One New York litigator admits the firm looks for "typical top schools; NYU, Georgetown, Columbia elites. Grades are important, but personality also factors in a lot." An insider agrees that "you have to have excellent grades and (usually) come from a top school, but that is not enough. This firm pays a lot of attention to fit, and I know countless people from my law school, many with better grades than me, who did not receive callbacks or offers." Indeed, agrees a corporate associate, "People with great paper credentials will not get hired if the firm's sense is that they would not fit in or that they are not nice. I mean it; we really care about `nice.'"
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OUR SURVEY SAYS
"The office is very casual and there is not a great deal of hierarchy between levels of attorneys," begins one insider, before adding that "politically, the lawyers at the firm tend to be pretty liberal, but we have our conservatives, too. Most importantly, the large majority of lawyers I work with are just nice; a rare trait in this business." An observant newbie has noticed that "the firm is very conscious of maintaining work/life balance, promoting diversity/inclusion and being a 'good place to work.' This is reflected in the many committees, groups and initiatives, formal and informal, that speak to the needs of moms, minorities, women and social interests." One insider appreciates the "congenial" office, with "lots of even-keel people and very 'nice' personalities. Politics are generally center-left, but a surprising number of more conservative and Fed-Soc types who are just as respected and warm as everyone else."
A veteran characterizes "the firm culture as friendly and sociable," while another breathes a sigh of relief that "generally, associates work well together as a team. I have not experienced the intensive competition at this firm that I have known at other firms; here, associates are not out to get each other." Claims one insider, "There is an incredible spectrum of diverse personalities at the firm that makes the culture inclusive and interesting."
Says a Washington litigator, "We have a bar called the Garden Room that opens up at 5:30 every day. On Fridays, the place is packed with lawyers and a good place to catch up with friends." However, adds one insider, socialization occurs rather "infrequently outside of firm-sponsored events like these." Agrees one junior associate, "This is a liberal, laid-back culture in comparison to most other big law firms. Folks are friendly, but there is no pressure to socialize outside working hours."
Just tell me what you want ...
"Arnold & Porter values its talent," asserts a midlevel, "and the firm is willing to be flexible to keep it." Adds one insider, "The firm offers real part-time work schedules, and actually respects your part-time hours." According to a tax attorney, "There is little emphasis on face time; as long as the work gets done and you're there for important meetings, partners don't mind when you're in the office or if you work remotely as needed."
One litigator dissents, "The firm claims to be flexible with hours, but I don't see how they possibly can be. When the work is there, you need to be there to do it." However, defends a corporate source, "The hours, billable and in-office, can vary greatly from week to week in any group." A detailed analysis from one insider: "Although working long hours is to be expected when working at any big firm, I feel I work fewer hours than attorneys at comparably sized law firms. Also, the firm doesn't put a lot of emphasis on face time as long as the assignments you have been given are completed diligently and on time." Agrees a junior associate, "The partner I work for has no problems with me working from home, which I often do at least once a week." A veteran associate clarifies that "people work hard, just like at other large firms. A&P is flexible with leave policies and face time is not necessary. People are given the freedom to get their work done on the schedule that works for them." One newbie appreciates that there is "no struggle to find work as a first-year, and reasonable demands on my time."
There is "some flexibility to leave earlier if you have children," notes a source, "but be prepared to have to log back in at night from home to make up the hours (to get the work done) and work as many hours as associates who are not parents." Indeed, one litigator admits to "coming in around 10 a.m. and leaving between 7 and 9. I also work from home once or twice every other week." One novice litigator knew this practice area "would of course lead to occasionally long days, but things have generally been pretty predictable about seven to eight hours a day in the office. I tend to work from home in the mornings via remote login, and it's never been a problem."
Freedom of choice
"It's hard to choose," begins an overwhelmed newbie. There is "great training available; sometimes too much!" A seasoned litigator agrees that "the firm provides training on so many levels, there's no excuse for not being well trained." One midlevel commends "the extensive commitment to professional development evident" through the firm's renowned training. A novice litigator appreciates that "nearly every day there is a training session going on somewhere in the firm," while one insider says that "we have so much training it is impossible to keep track of it, much less participate in all of it. And as if that's not enough, the firm will almost always pay for additional training outside the firm if some particular topic is not being offered in house. Each practice group has a partner who mentors associates' development and makes sure that everyone is getting the work experiences they need to grow."
Although veteran attorneys agree that "the firm has good training resources with excellent staff," litigators still feel the firm "needs to do better at communicating those resources to associates." Agrees one source, "There are information sessions on areas of law. However, there is no training with actual work assignments." A midlevel adds that "training is available, but fitting it in is tough, and IP training is something you have to go and get yourself." We're told that "the firm provides formal training, but programs are hit-or-miss when it comes to timeliness and practical utility." From a junior associate: "There's a formal training program in place. I can't say that all of the events are particularly useful, but they are there." However, looking toward the future, a banking source prizes the firm "for doing a good job in the last few years of offering more formal training options to associates."