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Vault Guide to the Top 100 Law Firms, 2018 Edition.pdf

The practice group is a meritocracy so the work is

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• “The practice group is a meritocracy, so the work is not necessarily evenly distributed among all associates. Many of the partners strongly prefer face-time, so working remotely is still a foreign concept to many of them. However, they are very understanding if you need to work remotely for finite periods due to personal or family reasons.” • “Although face-time isn’t required, work for me often ‘pops up’ with little to no warning. If I were not in the office at the time, it would make accepting those projects difficult if not impossible.” • “Face-time is highly encouraged and sought after, with partners often coming to my office to discuss strategy and next steps.” Compensation • “I think our compensation is above-market in our market. However, overall, bonuses are small and contingent on meeting the billable hours threshold; there is little incentive to pursue bonuses because of how small they are. There is no 401(k) matching, which is something most associates are unhappy about.” • “We are paid base market salaries, but bonuses are a fair amount below market. It is also hard to reach the billable threshold in some practices because so much important work is creditable/non-billable. That said, our work/life balance is significantly above market, so this is a trade-off that personally I am willing to take.” • “I earn a very competitive salary for a first year associate. With 1950 billable hours yearly (this includes client work and pro bono work), I am eligible to receive a year-end bonus. However, the 1950 billable hours is a threshold for a bonus, but not a requirement to keep your job.” • “The bonus is straightforward: get over 1950 hours and you get one. It’s low, relative to the market.” Quality of Work • “Quality of work is hit or miss. Often I get very substantial work, sometimes work that is even beyond my level. However there are occasions where the work seems below my level. I often perform research and writing, drafting motions and filings and discovery responses, handling discovery matters, assisting with and sometimes giving depositions.” • “I spend the majority of my time as a first year on research projects or making technical and substantive edits to contracts. I’ve received a wide array of projects from quick and easy to very complex, theoretical, or technical, which is nice to provide for a diverse work experience every day.” • “I spend a good deal of time on substantive legal work, with a nice combination of challenging work that pushes
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327 Vault Guide to the Top 100 Law Firms, 2018 Edition K&L GATES my skill set forward and more routine work that can get somewhat repetitive but which is necessary and far from my understanding of doc review. Even in the routine assignments, I am encouraged to think critically about my work and to contribute to improving even the routinized processes.” • “There is a solid mix of work and those partners that still care
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  • Fall '16
  • Hugard

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