First, we encourage associates to assume as much responsibility as possible. Typically, this means that within a year, associates will be taking and defending depositions, briefing substantive motions, and working directly with clients.
Second, given our size and the fact that we are not highly leveraged, we do not staff cases with layers of associates, one reporting to another. We staff cases leanly, many times with only one partner and one or two associates. For those cases that carry a larger workload, we put together a team for the course of the case. This approach provides associates with a deep case knowledge, and the confidence to take on new challenges and advance their legal skills.
Third, because our associates do gain hands-on litigation experience faster than at other firms, being considered for partner during the seventh or eighth year following graduation is the norm rather than the exception.
Fourth, we strongly believe that to become a great litigator, an attorney needs to gain broad practice experience working in many substantive legal areas. Therefore, we have not formed formal practice groups. While many of our attorneys are renowned in specific fields, we pride ourselves in our ability to tackle any and all complex litigation, whether civil or criminal. We especially encourage our associates to work on a variety of cases.
Consistent with this approach, we seek top-caliber candidates through on-campus recruiting of summer associates and recruiting of law clerks and lateral junior associates across the country.