Law Firm News

Dechert Offers Free Brexit Advice to AIG Policyholders

September 13, 2016

Dechert is planning to offer free legal advice to an entire segment of AIG policyholders on the impact of Brexit.

Firms Invest in Nonlawyer Industry Experts for Niche Services

By Lizzy McLellan |

In a client-driven legal market, law firms are constantly seeking ways to stand out as providing unique services and better value, even if it requires a long-term investment. And for some firms, that means pulling in skilled professionals with training and experience in other industries.

Former Phila. Solicitor Joins Archer & Greiner

By Lizzy McLellan |

Archer & Greiner has added another former member of Philadelphia's Law Department to its ranks, bringing on former Philadelphia city solicitor Shelley R. Smith as a partner.

Beemer Taps Cozen O'Connor Partner as Special Adviser

By Gina Passarella |

Pennsylvania Attorney General Bruce Beemer has continued building out the leadership team that will advise him for the four or so months he is slated to have the job.

Contract Lawyer Ranks to Grow as Firms Seek to Protect Profits

By Lizzy McLellan |

As law firms look to staffing adjustments as a way to maintain or fatten their profit margins, and young lawyers seek alternate employment routes in lieu of the traditional partner track, the role of contract attorneys is likely to gain prominence, legal industry observers said.

In Offit Kurman Fee Dispute, Some Discovery to Remain Public

By Lizzy McLellan |

In a fee dispute involving a Philadelphia lawyer it dismissed in 2012, Offit Kurman has been allowed to file certain information regarding the firm under seal, but was not granted the blanket seal on discovery materials it sought. The firm is facing allegations that it failed to comply with its promise to pay origination fees to an attorney after he left the firm.

Court Invalidates Lawyer's Fee Split With Litigation Investors

By Lizzy McLellan |

In a first-impression issue, the Pennsylvania Superior Court has affirmed the dismissal of a lawyer's unjust enrichment claim against litigation funders, ruling that the fee agreement between them and the plaintiff could not be enforced.

Justices Allow New Petition on Nonpartner Fee Dispute

By Lizzy McLellan |

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has agreed to give a second chance at recovering damages for attorney fees to a law firm that was denied breach of contract damages because the lawyer who entered the agreement was not a partner.

Morgan Lewis Settles Dispute With Ex-Partner

By Gina Passarella |

After languishing on the docket for months, a largely sealed lawsuit between Morgan, Lewis & Bockius and a former partner who left the firm after allegations he shared confidential client information has settled.

Energy Industry, DEP Become Litigation Targets Under New Fracking Rules

By Max Mitchell |

Energy companies and the state Department of Environmental Protection are seen as the biggest and most likely targets of litigation that attorneys anticipate will flow from a series of much-anticipated oil and gas regulations expected to take effect this fall.

Energy Practices Expect Boon—For Now—From New DEP Rules

By Lizzy McLellan |

As Pennsylvania's energy industry prepares for a new set of regulations, expected to take effect this fall, law firms with energy and environmental practices in the state are gearing up to provide guidance about what those regulations will require.

Costlier Cases, Dispute Resolution Top Trial Lawyers’ Trend List

By Zack Needles |

There are many different types of litigators, but they all share one common trait: adaptability.

Ballard Spahr offices in Washington, D.C. March 24, 2015. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Penn Medicine Data Privacy Lawyer Rejoins Ballard Spahr

By Lizzy McLellan |

Ballard Spahr has rehired a data privacy and intellectual property attorney from the University of Pennsylvania, where she spent two years working in data privacy issues related to HIPAA compliance.

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Energy Lawyer Rejoins Post & Schell After In-House Stint

By Lizzy McLellan |

A former Post & Schell shareholder who was most recently in-house at an energy company has returned to the firm as a principal in its environmental, energy and utilities and Marcellus Shale practice.

received 9/8/16-  David H. Marion, senior counsel, White and Williams, Philadelphia

Longtime Phila. Litigator Joins White and Williams

By Lizzy McLellan |

White and Williams has added to its litigation bench in Philadelphia, bringing in veteran trial attorney David H. Marion as senior counsel.

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Eckert Seamans Hires Former Aria Health Chief Counsel

By Lizzy McLellan |

The former chief legal counsel for Aria Health, Rafael Villalobos, has joined Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott as a member, allowing the firm to offer a greater variety of health law services.

Handout

Duane Morris Trademarks DNA–Sort Of

By Gina Passarella |

Almost three years after Duane Morris developed a proprietary system for analyzing the anatomy of its cases for pricing purposes, the firm has trademarked its logo for the tool, DNA.

Bochetto & Lentz Loses High-Court Bid for Referral-Fee Recovery

By Lizzy McLellan |

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has declined to take up a case over an alleged improper referral, rejecting Bochetto & Lentz's appeal and finalizing a summary judgment order in favor of defendant and attorney A. Harold Datz.

Young Hispanic businesswoman sitting in a meeting room with some of her colleagues

Despite High Satisfaction, Pa. Midlevel Associates Gripe Over Pay

By Lizzy McLellan |

Pennsylvania midlevel associates generally reported high levels of satisfaction, with a few firms making major jumps in national rankings, in a recent survey conducted by Legal affiliate The American Lawyer. But some firms showed noteworthy declines in associate satisfaction, with survey responses revealing complaints about compensation or workload.

Layoffs Likely on Horizon, but Less Severe in Pennsylvania

By Lizzy McLellan |

Pennsylvania firms are not immune from a nationwide dip in demand, which industry observers predict will lead to layoffs, but the impact in Pennsylvania may not be as severe as in other regions, where more firms have raised first-year associate salaries to $180,000.

James J. Eisenhower.

Veteran White-Collar Defense Attorney Joins Dilworth

By Lizzy McLellan |

James J. Eisenhower, a longtime white-collar defense lawyer with roots in federal prosecution, has joined Dilworth Paxson as a partner in Philadelphia.

Phila. Firms Robust So Far in 2016, but Challenges Will Mount

By Lizzy McLellan |

While Philadelphia-area firms were looking better than the rest in the first half of 2016, based on revenue data collected by Wells Fargo Private Bank's Legal Specialty Group, the second half of the year is likely to show a drop-off.

Pa. Firms Boosted by Rise in Litigation, Citi Survey Shows

By Gina Passarella |

Pennsylvania law firms outperformed the national averages for revenue and profit growth in the first half of 2016 thanks to strong inventory coming into the year along with improved collection cycles and significant expense management, according to a recent report by Citi Private Bank's Law Firm Group.

No Legal Windfall Yet From Rising Pa. Natural Gas Production

By Lizzy McLellan |

While Pennsylvania's natural gas production is on the rise, energy lawyers in the state said that will not have an immediate impact on their practices. But, they said, the numbers forecast a bright future for multidisciplinary energy practices in Pennsylvania, as well as the overall state economy.

Crisis illustration

Pa. Firms Feel Effects of Demand Hit That 'Blindsided' Industry

By Lizzy McLellan |

In the midst of a jarring decline in demand for legal services nationwide, some Pennsylvania firm leaders said transactional practices are suffering, as corporate clients become more selective in their work with outside law firms.

Obermayer Can't Arbitrate Ex-Associate’s Bonus Allegations

By Gina Passarella |

Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel has lost its bid to arbitrate a lawsuit filed against the firm by a former associate who alleged its billing rate allocation denied associates their fair share of bonuses.

Amid Rent Debt, Bankruptcy Firm Seeks Chapter 11 Protection

By Lizzy McLellan |

A western Pennsylvania bankruptcy firm that changed hands in the midst of a now-suspended principal's disciplinary troubles has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Bennett Bricklin Opens Wilkes-Barre Office

By Lizzy McLellan |

Bennett Bricklin & Saltzburg is opening an office in Wilkes-Barre, with the addition of a defense litigator from Thomas, Thomas & Hafer.

Trujillo Joins Chamberlain to Spearhead Growth in Phila.

By Lizzy McLellan |

Ken Trujillo, a Philadelphia litigator from Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis and a player in the local political scene, has left the firm to join Houston-based Chamberlain Hrdlicka and grow its Philadelphia presence.

Ballard Spahr offices in Washington, D.C. March 24, 2015. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Clients Oppose Ballard Suit Seeking Cut of Merger Money

By Lizzy McLellan |

Clients of Ballard Spahr want the firm's suit against them thrown out, arguing the law firm has no claim to a cut of the proceeds from a merger that resolved antitrust litigation Ballard filed on their behalf.

Plaintiffs Bar Diversity Improves Slightly as Conversations Shift

By Lizzy McLellan |

While certain firms made individual gains in attorney diversity since last year, improvement in the number of minority and female trial attorneys remained sluggish from 2015 to 2016, based on The Legal's ninth annual survey examining diversity at the largest plaintiffs firms in the state.

Kimberly Kitchen, left, leaves the Huntingdon County Courthouse in Huntingdon, Pa., on March 24, 2016, after she was found guilty of posing as an attorney for nearly a decade. Kitchen was convicted March 24 on charges of forgery, unauthorized practice of law and felony records tampering in Huntingdon County.

A Pa. Lawyer Who Wasn't Faces Sentencing After Years of Deception

By Ben Seal |

Kimberly Kitchen's past began to unspool two years ago. Kitchen was, by all accounts, a generous member of the Huntingdon community whose volunteer work with charitable organizations made her a familiar face around town. She was also a forger who practiced law without a license, for which she was found guilty in March of two misdemeanors and a felony. As she prepares to be sentenced Tuesday, the Huntingdon County bar is picking up the pieces left behind by her ruse.

Munich, Germany.

Pa. Firms Keep Eyes on Germany in Wake of Brexit Vote

By Lizzy McLellan |

In the wake of last month's Brexit vote, and in preparation for the United Kingdom's exit from the European Union, some large Pennsylvania firms are looking to expand operations in Germany.

Blank Rome Partners, Including Son of Firm Founder, Join Fox

By Gina Passarella |

Fox Rothschild has hired two longtime partners from Blank Rome who were conflicted out of their former firm after it acquired more than 100 partners and new practices from Dickstein Shapiro earlier this year.

Economic Factors Driving Increase in Nonlawyer Payment Inquiries

By Zack Needles |

As evidenced by a recent Pennsylvania Superior Court ruling invalidating an alleged fee-splitting arrangement between a law firm and an outside consultant, questions about the proper way for attorneys to pay nonlawyers who help generate business still arise frequently.

Ajay Raju, executive chairman and CEO of Dilworth Paxson. 2015. HANDOUT.

Changes at Dilworth: 'Identity Crisis' or 'Radical Vision'?

By Lizzy McLellan |

Dilworth Paxson's attorney head count has taken some noticeable hits in recent months, leading some to express concern for the firm's future, but its leader said he is encouraged by the shape Dilworth has taken since he began implementing a new strategy more than two years ago.

Business handshake and business people

Notable Mergers, Departures Show Through in Pa. Firm Head Counts

By Lizzy McLellan |

While Pennsylvania's largest law firms maintained a steady head count overall in 2015, a number of firms experienced noticeable gains and decreases due to mergers, strings of departures or group moves, according to data reported by Legal affiliate The National Law Journal.

As Merger Fever Continues, Phila. Market Is Hot

By Lizzy McLellan |

As law firms nationwide experience a record pace for mergers and acquisitions, Philadelphia-area firms have accounted for a significant share of the activity.

Credit: inarik/iStockphoto.com

From Golden Girls to Tracing Lincoln's Footsteps: How These Pa. Lawyers Survived the Bar Exam

By Lizzy McLellan |

We asked several prominent Pennsylvania lawyers how they managed the stress of studying for the bar exam.

Burns White Grows Med Mal Group With Obermayer Attorneys

By Lizzy McLellan |

Two medical malpractice attorneys from Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel, including the co-chair of that practice, have joined Burns White, further adding to the latter firm's growing litigation bench.

Drinker Biddle Litigator Gregory Miller Joins JAMS

By Lizzy McLellan |

Gregory P. Miller, a former managing partner at Drinker Biddle & Reath, has joined JAMS.

Reed Smith Washington, D.C. offices. November 12, 2014.

Reed Smith Hires Lincoln National Lawyer in Philadelphia

By Gina Passarella |

While Reed Smith has seen departures from its Pittsburgh office in recent months, the firm has been growing in Philadelphia where it brought on two new litigators last week.

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Legislation, New Generation Are Focal Points for Trial Bar Leader

By Max Mitchell |

The future will be the focus for Ezra Wohlgelernter, the incoming head of the Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association

Lifetime Achievement Award Winners

The following attorneys were selected to receive Lifetime Achievement Awards. Read More

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Dilworth Partner Who Led Phila. Newspapers Sale Joins Buchanan

By Lizzy McLellan |

Longtime Dilworth Paxson attorney Richard L. Fox has been hired by Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney.

Pa. Firms Ride National Wave of Growth in IP Practices

By Lizzy McLellan |

As large firms across the country beef up their intellectual property practices, Pennsylvania firms have played a major role in the lateral and acquisition activity, and firm leaders expect these hires and deals to continue in the near future.

Stacey Meadows of Saxton & Stump

Former Jefferson In-House Lawyer Joins Pennsylvania Firm

By Lizzy McLellan |

Stacey Meadows, who served Thomas Jefferson University Health System as senior vice president and general counsel for 16 years, has joined legal and consulting firm Saxton & Stump.

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Austin Takes Over as PBA President With Focus on Future

By Ben Seal |

As Sara Austin prepares to take the reins as the Pennsylvania Bar Association's newest president on May 13 following the organization's annual meeting in Hershey, she's thinking about ways to increase engagement with the bar, broaden its membership and better serve the needs of attorneys around the state. The York County civil litigator, who is often found scuba diving when outside of the courtroom, said she already has a theme picked out for her year at the helm: dive right in.

Pa. Law Firms Face Challenge in Matching 2015's Real Estate Boom

By Gina Passarella |

Pennsylvania's largest law firms had above-average financial performances in 2015, often driven by blockbuster years for their real estate practices. While real estate lawyers are still largely bullish through at least 2016, there are signs of a slowdown on the horizon, and the question now becomes how to replicate what was at times double-digit growth.

Pepper Hamilton

What Caused 'Abrupt' End to Pepper-Reed Merger Talks?

By Gina Passarella |

Pepper Hamilton and Reed Smith's merger discussions, though still in the early stages, were moving along in a positive direction until, for reasons that remain unclear, they hit an abrupt speed bump the afternoon of April 22, sources familiar with the talks said.

Pepper Hamilton

Pepper Hamilton and Reed Smith End Merger Discussions

By Gina Passarella |

Pepper Hamilton and Reed Smith have ended merger discussions less than two weeks after the firms confirmed they were eyeing the possibility of joining forces.

The Legal's 2016 Firm Financial Coverage: Fox Rothschild Grows Revenue 9.6 Percent, PPP Under 1 Percent

Reports for the Legal’s annual firm finance coverage are coming in. Check back often to this page for the latest insights on firm revenue, net income and other metrics.

Pepper Hamilton

Will Reed Smith-Pepper Hamilton Merger Leave Some Behind?

By Gina Passarella |

By all accounts, Reed Smith is in the driver's seat when it comes to merger discussions with Pepper Hamilton, but the former head of Pepper Hamilton's lucrative health effects litigation practice is said to hold the keys to her colleagues' future in a combined firm.

Harrisburg

Small-Town Firms Drawing Work From Bigger Cities

By Gina Passarella 
and Lizzy McLellan |

Clients' willingness to experiment outside of their typical roster of law firms has led to more legal work spreading from large cities to less-expensive counties.

Merger Creates 28-Lawyer Firm in Montco-Bucks

By Lizzy McLellan |

Two small firms in Montgomery County and Bucks County have merged, creating a 28-lawyer dual-county general practice law firm.

Corporations Are Moving Work to Less Traditional Law Firms

By Gina Passarella |

While convergence is far from new, general counsel have expressed a growing willingness to experiment with smaller firms and a skepticism of some of the techniques used by larger firms to address costs.

Blank Rome Grows Revenue 4.2 Percent, PPP 7.9 Percent

By Gina Passarella |

An increase in demand coupled with improved billing realization resulted in a 4.2 percent increase in gross revenue for Blank Rome in 2015, firm leadership said.

Reed Smith Washington, D.C. offices. November 12, 2014.

McGuireWoods Takes Team of Reed Smith Finance Litigators

By Gina Passarella |

McGuireWoods is set to hire a team of lawyers from Reed Smith's Pittsburgh office led by partner Mary Hackett, a former head of Reed Smith's financial services litigation group, Reed Smith has confirmed.

Duane Morris Revenue Up 1.5 Percent, PPP Flat

By Lizzy McLellan |

In a year when contingency fees did not weigh in its favor, Duane Morris was able to pull through with a slight increase in annual revenue and no change in profits per equity partner.

Former Insurance Regulator Hired by Stradley Ronon

By Lizzy McLellan |

A former member of the Pennsylvania Insurance Department has retired from the world of insurance regulation, joining Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young as an adviser to businesses and insurance departments.

Cozen O'Connor Grows Revenue 9 Percent, PPP 0.7 Percent

By Gina Passarella |

Cozen O'Connor saw a 9 percent bump in gross revenue in 2015, bolstered by the midyear addition of Chicago litigation boutique Meckler Bulger Tilson Marick & Pearson and an overall rise in demand, firm leadership said.

Pennsylvania Firms Surpassing Expectations for Revenue, Profit

By Gina Passarella 
and Lizzy McLellan |

Demand for legal services has ­remained tight in the past few years and consultants predicted law firms would see an average of less than 5 percent growth in revenue for 2015. But many firms have far outpaced that figure, including a number of Pennsylvania firms that had record years last year.

Morgan Lewis Hires New CAO From Dechert

By Gina Passarella |

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius has hired a new chief administrative officer with a ­background in project and pricing management.

Law Firm Tie-Ups Getting More Creative, Complex

By Gina Passarella |

Recent law firm acquisitions that fall short of full-scale mergers are an example of the creativity industry consultants expect to see more of when it comes to minimizing the risk of expansion efforts. When Morgan, Lewis & Bockius took on more than 500 lawyers from ailing Bingham McCutchen, it acquired some of the liabilities too, while leaving the shell of Bingham, and a chunk of its lawyers, behind. And Feb. 11's announcement that Blank Rome acquired nearly all of the remaining lawyers of Dickstein Shapiro was accompanied by word that Blank Rome would get the assets of Dickstein Shapiro while seemingly avoiding any substantial liabilities. Bingham and Dickstein Shapiro were left to wind down their own affairs.

Reed Smith's PPP Drops 8.3 Percent, Revenue Falls 2.5 Percent

By Gina Passarella |

In the year leading up to 45 lawyers and additional staff being cut at Reed Smith, the firm saw gross revenue drop 2.5 percent and profits per equity partner (PPP) fall 8.3 percent.

Drinker Biddle Grows Revenue 7.5 Percent, PPP 11 Percent

By Gina Passarella |

Drinker Biddle & Reath boosted gross revenue 7.5 percent and profits per equity partner more than 11 percent in the first year under new leadership.

PI Firm Says Paralegal Fired Over Negative Facebook Posts

By Gina Passarella |

Personal injury firm Messa & Associates denied on Friday wage-and-hour claims levied by a former paralegal, instead saying she was fired because she posted negative things about the firm in public forums.

Montgomery McCracken Names New Chairman

By Gina Passarella |

Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads has elected Louis A. Petroni as its new chairman.

Stradley Ronon Opens in Chicago With K&L Gates Hires

By Gina Passarella |

Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young has brought on a four-partner team from K&L Gates, adding to its Washington, D.C., office and spurring the opening of a Chicago location.

People in the News—March 1, 2016—Montgomery McCracken

Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads partner David S. Blum is set to receive the Drexel University Thomas R. Kline School of Law Diversity Award on Wednesday.

Pepper Hamilton

Pepper Hamilton Grows Revenue 1 Percent, PPP 8.5 Percent

By Lizzy McLellan |

In a year when it experienced lower demand, Pepper Hamilton was able to grow gross revenue 1 percent thanks in large part to an especially strong corporate practice and contingent fees from its intellectual property practice.

People in the News—Feb. 29, 2016—Clark Hill

Christopher J. Day, a member in Clark Hill's Philadelphia office, was selected to speak at the Pennsylvania Bar Institute's Identity Theft CLE on March 9 at the PBI Conference Center in Mechanicsburg.

People in the News—Pa. Law Weekly March 1, 2016—Montgomery Bar Association

Gregory R. Gifford, a partner at Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg & Gifford, was elected treasurer of the Montgomery Bar Association.

People in the News—Feb. 26, 2016—Montgomery McCracken

Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads partner Mark B. Sheppard was appointed by Gov. Tom Wolf to the Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing.

Directly above photograph of an application for a visa.

People in the News—Feb. 25, 2016—Las Vegas EB-5 Conference

Klasko Immigration Law Partners attorneys Ronald Klasko and Daniel B. Lundy received awards for their expertise and leadership in the EB-5 industry during the third annual Las Vegas EB-5 Conference sponsored by EB5 Investors Magazine.

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People in the News—Feb. 24, 2016—America Judicial System

James W. Cushing of the Law Office of Faye Riva Cohen is set to lead the 16th annual "America Judicial System" seminar March 3 at Bucks County Technical High School to give social studies students an inside look at the judicial branch of government.

Market Volatility Hampering Demand for Legal Services

By Gina Passarella |

While individual partners may be riding out the waves rippling through the stock market, their clients have made adjustments, holding back on deals and generally slowing the purchase of legal services in an already constrained market for the industry.

People in the News—Feb. 22, 2016—McNees Wallace

McNees Wallace & Nurick attorney Kendra McGuire is set to co-present at the Pennsylvania Conference of State Trial Judges mid-annual meeting, scheduled from Wednesday to Friday in Philadelphia.

People in the News—Pa. Law Weekly Feb. 23, 2016—Marshall Dennehey

The PaLaw Managing Partners Breakfast, The Legal's gathering of Pennsylvania's law firm leaders for a networking and information session filled with useful business intelligence, is scheduled from 8 to 9:30 a.m. March 1 at The Duquesne Club, 325 Sixth Ave., Pittsburgh.

People in the News—Feb. 19, 2016—Drinker Biddle

Drinker Biddle & Reath elected several new partners of the firm.

Protest for the legalization of medical marijuana

Sen. Leach Takes Of Counsel Position At Philadelphia Firm

By Lizzy McLellan |

A Pennsylvania state senator who has taken a leading role in medical marijuana legislation is planning to re-enter the private practice of law at a firm that has lobbied for medical cannabis legalization.

People in the News—Feb. 18, 2016—Philadelphia Bar Association

This month's Philadelphia Bar Association board of governors meeting is scheduled for 4 p.m. Thursday in the 10th-floor boardroom at the bar association.

Pa. Lawyers in Higher Demand, Citi Survey Shows

By Gina Passarella |

Pennsylvania law firms ranked toward the bottom of regions nationally when it came to key financial metrics in 2015, but there is cause to be optimistic, according to results from Citi Private Bank Law Firm Group's year-end survey.

Pa. Firms Adding in State, Focused Less on Corporate Hires

By Gina Passarella |

While most of Pennsylvania's indigenous firms have focused the majority of their lateral growth outside of the state in recent years, the start of 2016 has shown firms are interested in adding talent within the state as well.

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People in the News—Feb. 15, 2016—Widener Law Journal

The Widener Law Journal is set to host a symposium titled "Ruling the Courts: The Future of Local Rules of Civil Procedure in Pennsylvania."

Court reporter - Nassau County Supreme..063015

People in the News—Feb. 12, 2016—National Court Reporters Association

The National Court Reporters Association designated Feb. 14-20 as the 2016 National Court Reporting and Captioning Week.

People in the News—Feb. 10, 2016—Conrad O'Brien

Patricia Hamill of Conrad O'Brien is set to speak at the second symposium on "Representing Students Accused of Sexual Assault: Due Process, Tort, Contractual, and Title IX Considerations."

People in the News—Feb. 11, 2016—Marshall Dennehey

Dana A. Gittleman, associate in the Philadelphia office of Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin, was named treasurer of the Young Lawyers Division of the Philadelphia Bar Association.

Law Firm Leaders' Books of Business Lend Credibility

By Gina Passarella |

As law firms grew in size and complexity, there was a well-adopted school of thought over the past decade that the firms' leaders should focus 100 percent of their time on managing what had become large-scale businesses. But in Pennsylvania alone, there are a number of firms, including the largest by head count and the most profitable, respectively, whose leaders have some of the largest books of business in the state.

People in the News—Feb. 9, 2016—Barley Snyder

Maria Di Stravolo Elliott of Barley Snyder was selected as the practice group leader for the firm's real estate, environmental and municipal group.

Dechert Bolsters Antitrust Group With Buchanan Hire

By Gina Passarella |

In a rare lateral move for Dechert in Philadelphia, the firm has hired an antitrust partner who has served as a member of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney's six-person leadership team.

Signing a contract

People in the News—Feb. 8, 2016—High Swartz

High Swartz partner Eric B. Smith was appointed president-elect of the Montgomery Bar Association for a one-year term.

Dechert Grows PPP 8.5 Percent, Revenue 6 Percent

By Gina Passarella |

Dechert grew gross revenue 6 percent in 2015 and bumped up partner profits by 8.5 percent in a year in which the firm's litigation practice saw double-digit increases.

People in the News—Feb. 5, 2016—McCausland Keen & Buckman

Benjamin R. Picker was elected as a shareholder of McCausland Keen & Buckman.

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People in the News—Feb. 4, 2016—Drinker Biddle

Drinker Biddle & Reath added Mark J. Foley to its labor and employment practice group.

People in the News—Feb. 3, 2016—Marshall Dennehey

Butler Buchanan III of Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin was reappointed as chair of the Campaign for Qualified Judges for 2016.

Connections and Flexibility Keys to Representing Startups

By Lizzy McLellan |

As the innovation economy has begun to spread outside of Silicon Valley, several Pennsylvania law firms have taken a shot at appealing to companies that may be the next Google or Facebook.

Survey: Low Demand, Overcapacity to Lead to More Layoffs

By Gina Passarella |

Financial performance in 2015 coupled with indicators for 2016 show law firms will most likely have to add new attorneys to bolster revenue while cutting staff and other lawyers to protect profits, according to a Wells Fargo Legal Specialty Group year-end survey.

Reed Smith Washington, D.C. offices. November 12, 2014.

Appeal Withdrawn Over Reed Smith's Mandatory Arbitration Clause

By Gina Passarella |

A month after a trial judge explained why Reed Smith's mandatory arbitration agreement in a client engagement letter was unenforceable, the law firm withdrew its appeal, dashing the chance for the first-impression issue to reach the state's appellate courts.

Burns White Adds Med Mal Group In Pittsburgh

By Lizzy McLellan |

Further adding to its litigation bench strength, Pittsburgh-based Burns White has added two members and two associates in the areas of professional liability and ­medical malpractice.

Gina F. Rubel

Real-Time Marketing Tools for Lawyers

By Gina F. Rubel |

Real-time marketing (RTM) is a term of art for a type of marketing that many attorneys have been utilizing for more than 20 years. It is a way to respond instantly to consumer legal questions, events and trends.

What Could Seal Deal Between Blank Rome and Dickstein?

By Gina Passarella 
and Katelyn Polantz |

For Blank Rome, a firm that has long eyed continued growth in Washington, D.C., a combination of some form with ailing Dickstein Shapiro would make sense, if, of course, the price was right, legal observers said.

Babst Calland Opens DC Office

By Lizzy McLellan |

Pittsburgh-based Babst Calland has opened an office in Washington, D.C., the firm announced Monday, bringing a new niche to its energy and natural resources practice.

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Firm Name Partner Layser Jumps to Montco Med Mal Practice

By Lizzy McLellan |

Attorney Derek Layser has departed from the firm he helped found in order to create a medical malpractice presence at a Montgomery County-based firm.

Dickie McCamey Adds New York Office

By Lizzy McLellan |

Pittsburgh-based Dickie, McCamey & Chilcote has added an office in White Plains, New York, to be led by an attorney from its New Jersey office.

Reed Smith Washington, D.C. offices. November 12, 2014.

Reed Smith Lays Off 45 Lawyers, Additional Staff

By Gina Passarella |

Reed Smith has laid off 45 lawyers across its offices in the United States, Europe and the Middle East, along with an unidentified number of staff.

handshake

Ballard Spahr Hires New CMO

By Gina Passarella |

Ballard Spahr has hired a new chief marketing and business development officer with a focus on client development and cross-marketing.

For Merger-Focused Pa. Firms, Where's the Next Hot Spot?

By Gina Passarella |

Coming off a record year for law firm mergers, with the Midwest and southern portions of the country targets of opportunity, Pennsylvania law firms will continue to expand in those markets while eyeing new geographic locations such as the Pacific Northwest, consultants and firm leaders said.

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Montco Bar President to Fight 'Attacks' on Legal Profession

By Max Mitchell |

Protecting the legal profession from taxes on legal services, the rise of discount legal services and declining interest from young leaders will be the focus of the Montgomery Bar Association's newest president.

Louis S. Fine of Fine and Staud Dies

Louis S. Fine, founding partner of Fine and Staud, died Jan. 5.

Lawyers Had Big Hand in Las Vegas Electronics Show

By Gina Passarella |

As technology companies invaded Las Vegas for the annual Consumer Electronics Show this week, touting the ways their new products will make users' lives easier, data privacy lawyers were helping craft the promises those companies could make about what happens to the personal data these products capture.

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Freeh Leaves Pepper Hamilton, Rejoining Freeh Sporkin

By Gina Passarella |

Louis J. Freeh has left Pepper Hamilton to rejoin Freeh Sporkin & Sullivan, the law firm that saw all of its attorneys join Pepper Hamilton in 2012, the latter confirmed.

Pa. Firms Played Big Role in Record Year for Mergers

By Gina Passarella |

The legal community set a new record in 2015 for the number of law firm mergers, with Pennsylvania firms comprising nearly 11 percent of that record-high.

People in the News—Jan. 4, 2016—American Bankruptcy Institute

David L. Pollack, a partner in the real estate department of Ballard Spahr in Philadelphia, spoke at the American Bankruptcy Institute's 2015 Winter Leadership Conference in Phoenix.

Edward W. Mullinix, Retired Schnader Harrison Partner, Dies at 91

Edward W. Mullinix, a retired partner of Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis, died Dec. 9 at age 91.

Stradley Ronon Defeats Santander's $95M Malpractice Suit

By Gina Passarella |

Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young has defeated a long-running malpractice suit filed by former client Santander Bank, which claimed the firm failed to protect the bank's security interest in $95 million it was owed by a bankrupt mortgage servicer.

Fox Rothschild to Acquire Minneapolis Firm

By Lizzy McLellan |

Fox Rothschild has announced its planned merger with Oppenheimer Wolff & Donnelly, a Minneapolis-based firm, which will grow total head count more than 10 percent to over 700 attorneys.

People in the News—Dec. 10, 2015—Real Estate Institute

Robert R. Watson Jr. of Eastburn and Gray is set to serve as a faculty member of the 19th annual Pennsylvania Bar Institute's Real Estate Institute in Philadelphia on Friday.

handshake over coffee

Managing Client Expectations: Strike a Good Balance

By Terry Silver |

Does what you say and what your client hears correlate? Is your vision of an outcome in line with your client's vision? Do you maintain sufficient communication with your client so, as the expression goes, you are "on the same page"? The client's view of our level of service often depends on the quality of communication and the similarity or difference in expectations.

Firm Managing Partners Invited to Business Networking Breakfast

The PaLaw Managing Partners Breakfast, The Legal's gathering of Pennsylvania's law firm leaders for a networking and information session filled with useful business intelligence, is scheduled from 8 to 9:30 a.m. Dec. 8 at the Union League, 140 S. Broad St., Philadelphia.

Vorys Sater Expands in Pittsburgh With Burleson Hires

By Gina Passarella |

Two partners in the Pittsburgh office of dissolving energy boutique Burleson LLP, including its managing partner, have joined Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease.