The passage rate for first-time takers of the Pennsylvania bar was at its lowest since 2003, the first year for which data was available from the state Board of Law Examiners.
Law Firm News
I am sad to say this but many small to midsized law firms are seeing flat revenues. This trend can be reversed if law firm leaders encourage their colleagues to do the following right away.
Houston-based energy law firm Burleson LLP has laid off six attorneys in its Pittsburgh office, including the office managing partner.
Out-of-town firms with offices in Pittsburgh are beginning to bolster their attorney ranks thanks to a confluence of factors including both client opportunities and the focus by some indigenous firms on trimming lawyer head count in the city.
The insurance company for defunct law firm Wolf Block does not have to indemnify the firm over its failure to pay a former partner severance payments, a Philadelphia judge has ruled.
A federal judge has tossed three complaints filed against Pepper Hamilton, Blank Rome and Dechert filed by a law student who claimed the firms' decision not to hire him for a summer position violated the Americans with Disabilities Act.
A trial has been scheduled for the former Fox Rothschild lawyer hit with insider-trading charges stemming from the 2012 Harleysville-Nationwide insurance merger.
In response to Valley Forge-based RatnerPrestia announcing a new office in Munich, leaders of other intellectual-property boutique firms in Pennsylvania said the move is unique and unlikely to start a trend.
Chartwell Law Offices is set to acquire the 22-lawyer Florida law firm Wadsworth Huott, bringing Valley Forge-based Chartwell to more than 110 attorneys, including 40 in the Sunshine State. The merger is expected to go into effect Oct. 5.
In a rare move for a firm of its size, intellectual property boutique RatnerPrestia is set to expand abroad with the Jan. 1 opening of an office in Munich.
Pope Francis' visit to Philadelphia this past weekend meant law firm closures and, for some, more hype than proved necessary.
Pennsylvania law firms were split down the middle when it came to how well received their summer associate programs were this year as compared to last year.
Fox Rothschild appears to be the first Pennsylvania firm, and possibly only second firm nationwide, to elevate a partner to the role of chief privacy officer.
A mass torts attorney for The Beasley Firm has departed to start his own firm and serve as of counsel to a Midwest firm, seemingly leaving his former firm with no mass torts lawyers.
With less than a week before the World Meeting of Families kicks off the pope's visit to Philadelphia, law firms are still making decisions on whether and when to close down in a Center City that will largely be barricaded from Sept. 25-28.
Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young is in the midst of a fee dispute with an attorney and his parents over fees the firm claims it is owed for work representing the attorney in a civil suit filed by a Russian boy the lawyer was convicted of raping.
In hiring a Philadelphia tax lawyer from his solo firm, Post & Schell has launched a new practice group focused on tax disputes with federal, state and local authorities.
William Uchimoto, who spent time running the China practice groups for Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney and Stevens & Lee, said he was "shocked" to learn of the SEC's civil securities fraud charges leveled against him Sept. 10.
Comcast Spectacor has named Brian Rothenberg as the new general counsel of its live events unit, Spectra, the company announced Tuesday.
With the height of the initial Marcellus Shale bonanza several years out and gas prices remaining low, oil-and-gas-related title work has dropped off significantly, leaving some firms and companies facing cutbacks, furloughs and layoffs.
The majority of Pennsylvania law firms on this year's rankings of associate satisfaction by Legal affiliate The American Lawyer saw strong improvement, thanks in large part to both investments in technology and paying closer attention to what the associate committees had to say.
Dilworth Paxson is closing its Washington, D.C., location and choosing not to rebuild its New York office after a lateral defection that left that location without any attorneys, the firm's CEO has confirmed.
Dechert has expanded its reach in the Middle East through an association with the Law Firm of Hassan Mahassni in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Pennsylvania law firms are outperforming their national counterparts when it comes to demand, profitability and rate increases, according to a survey from the Legal Specialty Group at Wells Fargo Private Bank, which also shows a promising trend toward revenue growth at year's end.
The average starting pay for first-year associates in Pennsylvania will be noticeably higher for this fall's class, with several firms increasing pay to $160,000 or just below, according to the National Association for Law Placement and data submitted by the firms.
Cohen Seglias Pallas Greenhall & Furman has added two attorneys to its Pittsburgh office, the firm announced Monday, doubling the office's head count and expanding the firm's oil and gas practice.
A multimillion-dollar malpractice and fraud suit against Squire Patton Boggs over its 17-year relationship with client Alliance Holdings was withdrawn Wednesday, a few months after a settlement agreement appears to have been reached, court documents show.
Reading the legal press over the last two or so years could lead to the natural assumption that law firms are getting better at succession planning, particularly the planning part. A growing number of firms have announced new firm leadership and many have done so upward of a year in advance.
Morgan Lewis & Bockius has been focused on deepening its white-collar defense bench over the past several months, most recently adding Harvey Bartle IV as a partner in the firm's Philadelphia and Princeton, New Jersey, offices.
Board memberships have often been touted as great ways for attorneys to give back to the community and generate business contacts, but a recent situation involving Bill Cosby's defense counsel doubling as the chairman of Temple University's board highlighted why some firms have put tighter scrutiny on board affiliations.
Indicted Attorney General Kathleen Kane's tenure as Pennsylvania's top prosecutor is over whether she wants to acknowledge that or not. It's not a matter of if, but how and when, and how much more damage she's willing to inflict on herself and the state.
A federal judge has sent to arbitration an ADA case against Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin involving an attorney who said the firm didn't make accommodations for her fear of taking the elevator to her 24th-floor office.
Longtime Montgomery County attorney John Paul Knox died July 21 at age 87.
While Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane has said she has no intentions of resigning in the wake of the criminal charges filed against her Thursday, the state attorney disciplinary system could impact her ability to practice law.
Dechert has expanded its international arbitration capabilities to the United States with the hire of two Weil, Gotshal & Manges partners in Washington, D.C.
The makers of Yaz, Yasmin and Ocella have agreed to provide nearly $56.9 million to establish a settlement program for plaintiffs claiming they suffered arterial blood clots as a result of taking the birth-control drugs.
A lawsuit filed by Mexican chicken breeders against pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Zoetis for producing faulty chicken vaccines will be litigated in Pennsylvania, a federal judge has ruled.
Large law firms have been quietly trimming partners, and many of those attorneys are not able to find new or similar positions given the premium placed on books of business, consultants have repeatedly said in recent months.
Saint Joseph's University has hired lawyers at Saul Ewing to represent it in two lawsuits filed over allegations of hazing in the women's softball program.
When more than 90 partners in seven months leave a law firm, no matter how large, eyebrows are raised and at least 91 different stories can be had about the cause. For K&L Gates, those stories have played out publicly across legal media in recent weeks as former partners and the firm's chairman offer up their explanations for departures across the 2,000-lawyer firm's increasingly global platform.
The University of Pittsburgh School of Law has formed the Energy Law and Policy Institute, which will be led to start by Reed Smith partner and law school alumnus Kevin Abbott.
Duane Morris has settled a legal malpractice case filed against it by the former chief medical officer of Aria Health, who argued the firm's representation of him in an underlying suit caused his termination.
Part of a string of lateral hires by Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney in Philadelphia appears to have left Novak Druce Connolly Bove + Quigg's year-old office in the city without any attorneys.
Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney has set a leadership transition plan in place, naming Philadelphia office managing shareholder Joseph Dougherty as the CEO-elect.
A federal judge has rejected a plaintiff's strict liability claims against the manufacturer of an allegedly defective spinal implant that failed and led to a broken back.
Lawyers need to differentiate themselves through relationship-building and personalized pitches that demonstrate a deep understanding of the client's specific business, a panel of general counsel in Philadelphia said Thursday in explaining how to win and keep their business.
Last week, a Philadelphia judge denied the dissolution of an out-of-state civil union between two women who have been separated for more than a decade, dashing the pair's hopes that Pennsylvania's legalization of same-sex marriage last year would pave the way for their divorce. It's issues like those that have family law lawyers warning against just any attorney claiming expertise in the area of LGBT legal affairs.
At midsize firms, rebranding may not require a large marketing team with a wealth of resources, but should center on a unified message that sets the firm apart from its competition, legal marketing professionals said.
Women comprise a disproportionately low percentage of lead trial counsel compared to their representation in the overall legal profession, a study for the American Bar Association's Commission on Women in the Profession has found.
While pro bono work appears to have declined slightly last year at Am Law 200 firms nationwide, large Pennsylvania firms are showing improvements in pro bono participation.
The wife of a former Bracewell & Giuliani client who sued the firm for malpractice was equally as bound by the mandatory arbitration agreement with the firm as her husband, the Third Circuit has ruled.
A recent U.S. Supreme Court decision affirmed for the second time the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, but it also may have given the defense bar a little more of a bargaining chip when it comes to personal-injury cases.
The number of female and minority attorneys at plaintiffs firms in Pennsylvania has shown little change since last year, according to The Legal's eighth annual survey looking at diversity at the largest plaintiffs firms in the state. But a few firms stood out from the rest by adding to the diversity of the trial bar. And there has been progress since The Legal's first study of diversity in the trial bar eight years ago.
The renter and prospective owner of a Philadelphia Main Line estate destroyed by fire may move forward with her claim that the insurance company tried to keep from paying her the entire cost of rebuilding.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius was a different firm a year ago. Certainly many of the same practices and office locations existed, but since then the firm has a new chairwoman and has completed two mergers that catapulted it to the largest in the United States by domestic head count with nearly 2,000 attorneys worldwide.
Pennsylvania's legal marketing community has seen relative stability over the past few years as many of the largest law firms have installed and maintained the next generation of chief marketing and business development officers. But there have been a few changes of late, including what the marketing community has perceived as the abrupt departure of Saul Ewing's marketing leader.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius has disputed it should return to former client Interstate General Media around $700,000 in fees the Philadelphia newspaper company said it was "bled" through the firm's alleged disloyal representation.
The Pittsburgh legal market, despite housing the headquarters of some of the largest law firms in the world, held on longer to the collegial nature of partnerships than some of its brethren in larger markets. But things have begun to change.
Attorney head count among Pennsylvania's largest firms has fluctuated in the first six months of the year from as much as a 9.3 percent increase to an 11.2 percent decline, according to a review of statistics tracked by ALM's RivalEdge.
The Philadelphia public interest community is in the midst of a flurry of leadership changes, and as longtime pillars of the community pass on their organizations' torches, the same appears to be happening nationwide as a generational shift occurs.
Campbell Soup Co. has appointed Adam G. Ciongoli as general counsel, the company announced Thursday.
In what has become a duel between competing motions for sanctions, the gay lawyer who sued Anapol Schwartz over his scuttled lateral move is seeking to recover some court costs against the defendant law firm over a motion for sanctions the firm filed late last month.
Blank Rome has looked to a jurisdiction with one of the busiest intellectual-property dockets in the country to grow that practice nationally and add additional IP litigation capabilities.
Erik Arneson, the executive director of the Pennsylvania Office of Open Records who was ousted from that position by Gov. Tom Wolf in January, has been reinstated.
When Community Legal Services Executive Director Catherine C. Carr accepted the Philadelphia Bar Association's Sandra Day O'Connor Award, she did so in front of her former boss and the first woman to receive the award more than 20 years ago.
Mergers and group departures had significant impacts on Pennsylvania firms' head count numbers—in both growth and decline—in 2014, according to data reported by Legal affiliate The National Law Journal.
As business consolidation has increased along with economic improvement, there have been more senior-level in-house counsel looking for new positions and that typically means a stop, for however long a time, in law firms.
Only two of the 17 Pennsylvania-based law firms included in Legal affiliate The American Lawyer's rankings of firms based on minority attorneys came in above the national average of 14.4 percent and none could be found in the top 50 of the rankings.
Richard Silfen has left his role as general counsel at the embattled American Realty Capital Properties to rejoin his former firm, Duane Morris.
The Third Circuit has refused Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro's request to stop court interviews of 31 firm clients inquiring whether they are willingly dismissing their thalidomide claims against GlaxoSmithKline and others.
The state Superior Court has upheld a decision not to strike a juror from a medical malpractice case, even though he was a client of the same firm representing defendants in that case.
Reed Smith has expanded its intellectual property, information and innovation group, bringing on six attorneys, including three who will launch the group's presence in Delaware.
Michael R. Nelson, the last remaining name partner of Nelson Brown Hamilton & Krekstein, has left the firm to join Sutherland Asbill & Brennan.
When a former Drinker Biddle & Reath contract attorney received a two-year suspension last week for overbilling a client on document review, the legal community's reaction focused not so much on the behavior as on the lawyer's billing rate.
The percentages of female equity partners within Pennsylvania's largest law firms largely place in the bottom third of the national rankings, with a few shining examples of area firms that are outperforming their counterparts when it comes to promoting women.
Defendants opposing claims of discrimination, retaliation and defamation brought by a gay lawyer over his scuttled lateral move have renewed their attempts to have the federal court case against them dropped.
The five Pennsylvania law firms on the Am Law 200 all held steady or showed modest movement up the rankings of the second hundred largest grossing law firms, according to data released Thursday by Legal affiliate The American Lawyer.
The state Superior Court has issued an order—for a second time—to suspend garnishments against defense attorney Nancy Raynor, sanctioned nearly $1 million by a Philadelphia judge.
A Philadelphia Commerce Court judge rejected Morgan, Lewis & Bockius' argument that a fee dispute by the owner of Philadelphia's two major daily newspapers should be moved to the Delaware Court of Chancery.
The gay lawyer who sued Anapol Schwartz over his scuttled lateral move should be sanctioned for allegedly making false statements about a key fact in the case, the defendants argued in a post-trial motion.
A former Drinker Biddle & Reath staff attorney agreed to a two-year suspension from the practice of law after admitting he overbilled for his time doing document review at the firm, according to an order from the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
While GlaxoSmithKline and the plaintiffs firm leading dozens of thalidomide injury suits against the company have largely agreed on the dismissal of 31 of those claims against GSK, the pharmaceutical company is now diverging from the law firm on an attorney-client privilege issue before the Third Circuit.
For the past couple of months, a 1,200-person alternative legal services provider has been quietly building up its team in a new location that serves Philadelphia, Wilmington, Delaware, and South Jersey.
Editor's note: Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille was named Attorney of the Year at The Legal's Professional Excellence Awards dinner Wednesday. His fellow finalists were U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III of the Middle District of Pennsylvania and Morgan, Lewis & Bockius chairwoman Jami Wintz McKeon.
Reed Smith is set to open an office in Frankfurt, Germany, on June 1 with the addition of seven lawyers from four different firms. The new location, which will focus heavily on the financial services industry, will be managed from the firm's 10-year-old Munich office.
A federal judge has denied Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro's request to stay interviews of 31 of the firm's clients to determine whether they are knowingly dismissing their thalidomide-injury cases, but not before the law firm filed a petition seeking a writ of mandamus with the Third Circuit seeking the higher court's intervention.
Christopher Carson has been elected president and CEO of Cohen & Grigsby, the firm has announced.
Editor's note: This is the fourth installment of a series examining the shift in law firm business models and the issues law firms must address to remain competitive in a new age of providing legal services.
As police and government officials were sorting through the wreckage Wednesday of Tuesday evening's derailment of Amtrak 188, lawyers began sifting through potential claims and, for some, offering their services to potential clients.
Lawsuits that Nelson Brown Hamilton & Krekstein and Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith attorneys leveled at each other over allegedly stolen laptops and withheld bonuses have been resolved.
In the wake of the Amtrak train derailment in Philadelphia that, according to public officials, resulted in the deaths of at least seven people and injured more than 200, lawsuits seem all but certain to be filed.
Siemens has agreed to pay $5.9 million to settle claims that it overcharged the federal government for medical equipment, without admitting liability.
Nearly 75 percent of the largest law firms in the country report they have too many attorneys, but Pennsylvania's largest firms have grown head count faster than almost any other market last quarter, data from two recent surveys show.
A Philadelphia jury has rejected a gay lawyer's claims against Anapol Schwartz over his aborted lateral move.
Editor's note: This is the third installment in a series examining the shift in law firm business models and the issues law firms must address to remain competitive in a new age of providing legal services.
Pennsylvania firms' performance in the first quarter of 2015 predicts even better numbers for further into the year, according to data tracked by Citi Private Bank Law Firm Group.
After several years working at Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads, Ellen C. Brotman has left the comforts of the deep white-collar defense bench there to start a new white-collar practice at 11-attorney Griesing Law.
Mark LeWinter, who supervised Jeffrey Downs, the gay attorney suing Anapol Schwartz for defamation, testified Wednesday his trust had been "betrayed" when Downs told another firm leader to keep LeWinter in the dark about Downs' threat of a lawsuit.
A federal magistrate judge has sanctioned Dietz & Watson for repeated discovery violations in a bad-faith suit against Liberty Mutual Insurance Co.
Cozen O'Connor has continued its expansion efforts this year with the addition of a 10-person state attorneys general practice from Dickstein Shapiro in Washington, D.C., and the firm's leadership said it isn't stopping there.
Editor's note: This is the second installment of a series examining the shift in law firm business models and the issues law firms must address to remain competitive in a new age of providing legal services.